Officials in Islamabad are contemplating renaming a significant thoroughfare in the city. They propose christening it “Dr. Ruth Pfau Road” in tribute to the renowned German physician, Dr. Ruth Pfau, who dedicated over 55 years to treating leprosy patients in Pakistan.
The head of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) has advocated for this road to bear Dr. Ruth Pfau’s name. Among the numerous nameless roads in Islamabad, they have singled out one for this special recognition.
Dr. Ruth Pfau arrived in Pakistan from Germany in 1961 and devoted five and a half decades to combating leprosy in the country. Her exceptional contributions garnered her numerous accolades, including the Hilal-i-Pakistan, Hilal-i-Imtiaz, Nishan-i-Quaid-i-Azam, and Sitara awards.
She established 157 clinics across Pakistan to provide care for individuals afflicted with leprosy, ultimately aiding 56,780 patients. Dr. Pfau’s impact was so profound that a medical college and hospital in Karachi were named in her honor. She sadly passed away in August 2017 and was posthumously honored by the government.
This proposal to rename the road parallels a similar initiative undertaken in June 2023 when the CDA opted to rename the well-known IJP Road as Karnal Sher Khan Shaheed Road. While some welcomed this decision, others had reservations. Nonetheless, the CDA proceeded to officially rename the road.