A gold medalist of Usman Institute of Technology’s (UIT) Computer Engineering Department, Muhammad Azam Khan, is working on Pakistan’s first processor, which he has planned to name ‘Buraq’. With the help of his institute’s microelectronic research lab and under the supervision of his teachers he pledges to serve the field of information technology.
Internet of Things (IoT) connects sensors through the internet with the hardware to make automation. Khan will be making the first processor of it in Pakistan.
“Currently we are in the designing phase and it will take at least one-and-a-half years to get it done,” he shared with The News at the UIT’s first convocation held at NED University, where 271 fresh engineers were conferred degrees on Saturday.
As many as six students were awarded with gold medals and Rs25,000 for their outstanding performance. Khan shared how the processor, once manufactured, in Pakistan would help students of Information Technology. “They will use locally produced development boards and institutes will not have to import them at a very huge cost,” he explained.
There are heavy duties and taxes on the import of these boards. When Pakistan’s own manufactured boards are be used, he said, there will be a huge positive impact on the country’s economy and several job opportunities will be created.
Sindh Governor and Chancellor NED University Imran Ismail was the chief guest of the graduation ceremony. UIT alumnus, who is now MD Storm Fiber, Fawad Leher, was the guest of honour.
Speaking at the ceremony, the governor said that it was due to utmost efforts of parents that today all these students had become engineers. “In a poor country like Pakistan, where parents in very meager finance teach their children, the government of Pakistan also invests in youth,” he said and lamented that as soon as youths graduated they started leaving the country, and they wanted either America or England’s visa.
“There they will wash dishes in some eatery, but they are not willing to work here,” he said and added that currently Pakistan was giving that opportunity to its students, an opportunity which was not even available in Europe. If a student wants to initiate a business immediately after graduation, he said, the government of Pakistan has announced youth loans, ‘Kamyab Jawan’ [successful youth], of Rs100,000 to Rs5 million. “Go to the internet, apply for it and get the loan. You don’t have to mortgage anything; most of the loan is interest-free and if there’s some interest, it’s very soft. Pitch your idea, form your company and start working,” he shared with the fresh graduates.
On Monday, he said, the first youth loan programme would be launched at the Governor House, Karachi, by Prime Minister Imran Khan. Around 500 to 600 students, he said, would be handed over their cheques.
Director UIT Dr Zahir Ali Syed shared about Khan’s work in the varsity’s Micro Electronic Research Lab where they are working on Reduced Instruction Set Computer V processor design, which is an open-source hardware instruction set architecture based on established reduced instruction set computer principles.
“Its aim is to design indigenous processor line called ‘Buraq’. UIT is very proud of this initiative and our efforts are being acknowledged all over the world,” he said and added that work was also being done in the areas of software defined networks, AI, robotics, IoT, electric vehicles, solar panels, 3D printers/scanners, batteries.
The UIT, he said, is very proud that one of its staff members started an India- Pakistan Peace initiative called ‘Chai ki Dukan’. This has been highly acclaimed internationally and was showcased at the United Nations in New York last year.
In the graduation ceremony, 147 students received Bachelor’s of electrical engineering degree, 55 students were awarded with Bachelor’s of computer science degree and 69 students were receipts of Bachelor’s of software engineering degrees.