Two Pakistani archaeologists have received awards from the French government for their noteworthy contributions in the field of archaeology.
Former Director Taxila Institute of Asian Civilization and Quaid-e-Azam University Prof. Dr. Muhammad Ashraf Khan won the award of Officer of “Arts et Lettres”. Whereas, the award of Knight of “Arts et Lettres” was presented to former Director General Department of Archeology and Museums Dr. Fazal Dad Kakar.
The awards were handed out by French Ambassador Dr. Marc Bartey. Federal Minister for Education, Professional Training and Heritage Shafqat Mahmood also attended the ceremony.
The French ambassador praised the services of both individuals. He acknowledged their continuous research and support to the training of a young generation of Pakistani archaeologists who study in France and work in Pakistan with the support of the renowned museum ‘Musee Guimet’ of Paris. This museum has the most extensive collection of Gandhara Art.
He remarked that both Pakistani nationals proved that their training in France has influenced them. They have used the training for the development of the field in Pakistan and promoting ties with France.
He also congratulated the government of Pakistan for managing to organize a full mapping of the country and highlighted the importance of its heritage.
The ambassador also underlined the importance of French cooperation in the field of archaeology. He talked about the discovery of Mehrgarh site by Jean-Francois Jarrige in 1974. He also mentioned the 60th anniversary of the Archaeological Mission of Indus Valley, which will be held on the site of Mohenjo Daro on February 28.
“On the occasion of celebrating more than 60 years of cooperation in Pakistan, I assure further cooperation from the government of France to Pakistan,” said the French ambassador.