Amritsar, March 14 Dr. A.K. Thukral, Professor at the Department of Botanical & Environmental Sciences and Director of Research at Guru Nanak Dev University has been elected Fellow of the International Association of Computer Science and Information Technology (IACST), Singapore. IACSIT is a registered international scientific association of distinguished scholars comprising of faculty deans, department heads, professors, research scientists and engineers etc. engaged in application of Computer Sciences to interdisciplinary research in the state-of-the-art methodologies. IACSIT has elected 23 Fellows throughout the world.
Dr. Thukral is one of the earliest computer literates of the country when in the year 1975, he developed expertise in Computer programming in FORTRAN-IV, the only programming language developed at that time. At that time there were less than 10 computers in India and each computer occupied the space of a room. The memory of a computer was only 64 Kilo bytes, as compared to the memory of the present day computers in Giga and Terra bytes. The printer, of the type of a line printer, at that time was of the size of a steel almirah, and programme was punched in punching machine of the size of a typewriter on post card sized punch cards. There were no software developed at that time, and DOS was the only working platform. Department of Botany of GuruNanakDevUniversity was the first Department in India to devise courses in Computer Programming and Applications and Remote Sensing for M.Sc. students in Botany in the early 90’s under Financial Assistance from UGC.
Dr. Thukral did his Ph.D. at BITS, Pilani in 1980 and joined GuruNanakDevUniversity the same year. He did his post doctoral research at the University of Moscow. He applied his knowledge of satellite Remote Sensing to study biodiversity and landscape of Kinnaur of Himachal Pradesh, Harike etc. Besides he is developing computational techniques for ecological modeling, remediation of polluted sites. He has developed statistical software for use of Ph.D. students in biology at the University. With about 100 research papers published, and 2 books edited, he is also a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London, and NationalEnvironmentalScienceAcademy. He has also been awarded Prof. P.N.Mehra award, and other awards for his contributions in environmental sciences.
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