PR Moscow - A Pakistani, Dr Najam ul Sahar Butt, from Lahore got highest civil award of Russia in the field of literature.

The Medal of Pushkin is a state decoration of the Russian Federation awarded to its citizens for achievements in the arts and culture, education, humanities and literature. It is named in honour of Russian author and poet Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin. Dr Najam ul Sahar Butt, who is the first Pakistani to get this award, got his degree in medicine from former Soviet Union. He recently translated several books of Russian literature into Urdu including the biography of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Biography of Russian President Vladimir Putin is compilation of interviews taken by three famous journalists from Putin when he was Prime Minister of Russia and acting president as well. Interviews were conducted by Nataliya Gevorkyan, Natalya Timakova, Andrei Kolesnikov while Putin included his own contribution therefore his name is also in the list of authors.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov presented the Pushkin Medal to him along with three other foreign citizens. Laureates were the subjects of Lithuania, Pakistan, Vietnam and Hungary. The award is presented for merits in strengthening friendship between peoples.

The award was granted on November 4 which is “Day of National Unity” for Russia.

Dr Najam ul Sahar Butt is son of veteran Pakistani journalist Badrul Islam Butt.

While awarding four foreign citizens, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said:

“In the modern world, contacts between people are very important. I express gratitude to people who devoted a large part of their lives to promoting friendship between peoples, popularizing the Russian language, Russian culture and helping the mutual enrichment of societies. Najam Us Sahar Butt, does a lot to ensure that the inhabitants of the country can read the best works of classical Russian literature in good translations”.

The award ceremony took place in the central building of the Russian Foreign Ministry on Smolenskaya Square.

The state award - Pushkin Medal - was established in 1999. It is awarded to citizens of the Russian Federation and foreigners for merits in the field of culture, art, education and the humanities.