Eminent scholars and academicians on Wednesday paid glowing tributes to the late Dr Ahmad Hasan Dani for his remarkable achievements in archaeology, history and anthropology.
They were speaking at a memorial seminar at Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU), marking the birth anniversary of the distinguished scholar.
QAU Vice-Chancellor Dr Masoom Yasinzai recounted Prof Dani’s achievements and said the late academic devoted all his research to the benefit of the society. He urged social scientists to devote their studies to the welfare of the people, adding that the main purpose of social sciences should be to resolve societal issues.
He announced the formation of the Dani Resource Centre at QAU, which will house all the works by or on Dr Dani at one place for the benefit of researchers. The resource centre will be managed by the Society of Asian Civilizations Pakistan.
German professor Dr Hugh Van Skyhawk, who teaches at QAU and was among the last people to work with Prof Dani, touched on the research the late doctor conducted in his final days.
“There is need to follow his legacy so that a meaningful research is possible,” he said.
Archaeology and Museums Director General Dr Fazal Dad Kakar noted that Dani was the only Muslim to complete a master’s degree with honours from Vanarasi Hindu University, for which he was awarded a gold medal. He also reminded the audience of Dani’s expertise in Sanskrit language.
QAU Taxila Institute of Asian Civilizations Director Dr Muhammad Ashraf said “[Professor Dani] left an unmatchable mark in various fields of social sciences and his achievements are recognised worldwide.”
Dr Riaz Ahmad said Prof Dani was a great teacher who inspired students and scholars to undertake field research with devotion and a sense of commitment.
Dr Hafeezur Rehman said Prof Dani was an expert of comparative religions besides being an archaeologist and historian of international repute.
In his concluding remarks, Dr Z A Qureshi said Dr Dani established the Society of Asian Civilizations Pakistan with the sole aim of promoting academic and research-oriented activities in the country.
He set punctuality as the hallmark of the society, which has been observed throughout its 12-year life of multifarious activities, Dr Qureshi added.
The seminar was organised by the Taxila Institute of Asian Civilizations in collaboration with Society of Asian Civilizations Pakistan. Dani’s widow Safia Sultana was the guest of honour.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 21st, 2012.