BAHAWALPUR-The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) has honoured Dr Gul Shahnaz, a resident of Bahawalpur, with the Fellowship Award and included her in the top 15 young female scientists of the world.

Currently working Quaid-i-Azam University's Pharmacy Department as assistant professor, Dr Shahnaz has brightened the name of Pakistan in the world of pharmaceutical sciences by discovering the treatment of a disease called "Leishmaniasis" in nanotechnology. It happens when a bee called Sand Fly which is found in deserts stings a person. People in Pakistan and all over the world will get cheap and quality treatment now thanks to the research that is being appreciated throughout the world including the US.

Dr Shahnaz, who belongs to Basti Laal Baig of Kehror Paka, 70 kilometers from Bahawalpur, has always been a bright student who loves studies. Her parents and other family members always encouraged and supported her which most of the girls in Southern Punjab are deprived of. She desires to work for the education of women in rural areas of Southern Punjab.

During 2007 to 2012, about 5,000 people lost their lives in Pakistan by falling victim to the disease.  According to the World Health Organisation, the medication currently being used to cure Leishmaniasis is very costly and has intense side effects. However, Dr Shahnaz said, her medicine will be prepared through nanotechnology and will be very cheap and free of side effects. She appealed to the parents to trust their daughters, support and encourage them besides providing them with opportunities to get higher education.