Nuclear scientist Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan has passed away at the age of 85

Dr. abdul qadeer khan passes away

Well-known Pakistani scientist Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan - also known as the 'father of the atomic weapons program in Pakistan' - died in Islamabad on Sunday, aged 85.

Dr. Qadeer was working for Covid-19 last month and was initially treated at Al-Shifa Hospital and later went to Military Hospital.

He was also repatriated after the successful management of a deadly disease. However, last night Dr Qadeer's condition worsened. He was taken to a nearby hospital where he breathed his last.

The government has decided to bury Dr Qadeer with state honors. In this regard, a meeting was convened by Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid at the Capital Development Authority (CDA) headquarters to finalize Dr Qadeer's funeral arrangements.

Born in 1936 in Bhopal, India, Dr. Qadeer moved to Pakistan with his family in 1947, after the breakup of the African continent. He is considered a pioneer in Pakistan's nuclear program.

Dr. Qadeer has led the world's nuclear program for some 25 years and is considered a national hero. He also founded Khan Research Laboratories in 1976 and was both its chief scientist and director for many years. He was awarded Nishan-Imtiaz for his services in the country.

Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said Dr Qadir's funeral prayers would be held at the Faisal Mosque at 3:30 p.m. He also added that the government has other means of burial in H-8 cemeteries in addition to the Faisal Mosque. Dr AQ Khan's daughter will make the final decision at the cemetery, he added.

Pakistan's national flag will be in the middle, the minister said, adding that the death toll had left the entire nation dead. "The prime minister has instructed him to bury Dr Qadeer with full [state] honors," the interior minister said, adding that ministers had been instructed to attend the funeral services.

According to the minister, joint chiefs of staff and representatives of all armed forces will attend the funeral. Police, Ranger and FC have been instructed to take strict security measures, he added.

Condolences began pouring in immediately after the news of Dr Qadeer's death.

President Dr Arif Alvi has expressed his sadness at the death of Dr Qadeer Khan. In a consolation tweet on Sunday, the President said Dr AQ Khan had helped Pakistan build a "nuclear deterrent".

On Twitter, Prime Minister Imran expressed his condolences on the death of Dr Qadeer. He said the nuclear scientist was popular with the nation because of the "significant contributions" that made Pakistan a nuclear power.

"He will be buried at the Faisal Mosque as per his wishes. My condolences and prayers go to his family," the Prime Minister said.

Opposition parliamentary leader Shehbaz Sharif called Dr Qadeer's death a "great loss" in Pakistan. He said Dr Qadeer had played a key role in making Pakistan a nuclear power.

Military chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa said Dr Qadeer's contributions to making Pakistan's defense force a "significant" force.

According to Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee and all service chiefs expressed their grief over the death of the nuclear scientist.

Former president Asif Ali Zardari also expressed sadness over the death of Dr AQ Khan. In a statement, Zardari said the Pakistani nation would never forget Dr Qadeer's services to the nation.

In 2004, Dr. Qadeer was arrested by the then government of the military governor Gen Pervez Musharraf. He has been arrested under the Security Act for allegedly transferring nuclear technology and centrifuges.

Later, in a video message he admitted that he had sent nuclear secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea, although he later retracted his remarks. Dr Qadeer was released from custody in 2009.

In 2019, Dr Qadeer had spoken to the High Court about the limits of his freedom of movement, stating that "freedom of movement could not be restricted, curtailed or restricted by choice or disapproval even under reasonable limits".

The government has been monitoring its movements with "security issues" and Dr AQ Khan has called these threats to his life "an exaggeration".


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