LAHORE - Nuclear scientist Dr Samar Mubarikmand has disclosed that copper mines and gold reserves have been located in North Waziristan . Addressing the ninth convocation of the Government College University, he said that Pakistan was one of the richest countries of the world in terms of mineral reserves and proper exploration was needed in this regard. If we put steps in the right way, Pakistan would be a developed state in next 10 to 20 years, he said. He said that according to recent evaluation, the copper and gold reserves in Balochistan are amounted to 273 billion dollars and the same kind of reserves had also been discovered in North Waziristan . Dr Samar said that despite the fact that our coal reserves were located in powder form under water, Pakistan could produce 50,000 megawatt electricity and 100 million barrel diesel just through the gasification of these reserves. He said that our talented students had already carried out a successful project to make diesel from the coal gas at laboratory level. He said that Pakistani students were competent enough to explore and utilise the mineral reserves of the country. However, we need thousands of mathematicians, chemical analysts, engineers and other experts for exploration of our mineral reserves at commercial scale. But, unfortunately, we have a very small of number of educational institutes of higher education which are producing quality manpower and GCU is one of them, he added. He very proudly told the participants that out of 140 experts who carried nuclear explosions in 1998, as many as 60 were old Ravians and their team leaders who press the button for explosions were also the former student of the Government College. Dr Samar advised the students that the country cannot wait more for quality leaders. Now, the youth should lead and work for Pakistans progress, he said. He also criticised the nationalisation policy of 1970s, saying that it stalled the countrys progress. Addressing the convocation, GCU Vice Chancellor Prof Khalid Aftab said that absence of quality education was the real cause of the overall social decline in the country. He said higher education in Pakistan had a class bias against the students of low-income strata. He also highlighted that the countrys higher education was not fully tuned to the needs of modern economy and the same was evident in the existing mismatch between the demand for various skills and the availability of manpower produced by the universities. He said that universities need to develop new higher education opportunities at various levels, particularly oriented to the employability skills, specialist knowledge and broad understanding of the new economy. Later, Dr Samar Mubarikmand gave medals and degrees to the position-holders. The university awarded the prestigious medals to its 22 best students for their outstanding performance in academic work and co-curricular activities, while doctorate degrees were conferred on 31 scholars in various subjects. Umar Zia-ud-Din was declared the Best GCU Debater awarded with Muhammad Idrees Medal, while Rana Hamza Ijaz received Prof GD Sondhi Medal, Shehryar Khalid Dauad Ilyas Medal, Isha Tariq Dr Saida Karamat Medal, while Umer Khan got Waleed Iqbal Medal. The prestigious academic medals and Rolls of Honor were awarded to Abid Ali Virk, Ayesha Taj, Asal Ilyas Awan, Aitzaz Mumtaz Khan, Sirat Fatima, Fiza Anwar, Rasees Aslam, Mubashra, Manzoor, Afzal Khan, Ruby Safdar, Sana Asgher, Aharjeel Shahid, Muhammad Asim, Lubna Amjad, Saba, Sharam Sarwar, Asadullah Javed, Fiaz Hussain, Affaf Amjad, Rabia Manzoor, Noreen Mumtaz, Muhammad Ahmad, Javaria Lodhi, Shabih UL Aijaz, Muhammad Ali Aun and Mubarik Amjad. As many as 167 students were awarded with MPhil degrees at the convocation.