Showing posts with label Who is who in Karachi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Who is who in Karachi. Show all posts

Friday, November 22, 2013

KWSB urge KESC to restore power supply to pumping stations

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Karachi faced a shortage of 120 mgd in the supplies made to the city following the disconnection of power supply to the pumping stations of the Karachi Water & Sewerage Board (KWSB) and the situation could go from bad to worse if the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) remained adamant in restoring electricity to pumping stations.
 “There is every possibility that a severe crisis situation may arise in the city due to water shortage as a result of KESC’s action,” Qutbuddin Shaikh. Managing Director, (KWSB), warned.

He said that schedule of water supply was badly affected due to shut down of power supply to pumping stations and if this continues, a volatile situation among citizens may erupt and particularly during the weekend when water consumption increases.

He pointed out that the KWSB was already faced with water shortage but KESC’s such behaviour could further worsen the situation making it difficult to maintain equitable supply of water.

Qutbuddin Shaikh reminded that the KWSB is a public utility organization which has been supplying water on a very nominal rate on no profit no loss basis.

He said although there is very low rate of recovery, still the KWSB was supplying water notwithstanding its limitations and KESC should keep the interest of people in view.

He said that the KESC should approach the Provincial and Federal Governments for settlement of its dues instead of punishing the citizens. He hoped that the KESC will make contact at government level instead of resorting to an extreme action.

Reiterating the caution that the water supply shortage can even result in a law and order situation, the KWSB Managing Director elaborated that it takes more time in restoring water supply than the shut down hours and as a result the water supply schedule gets badly affected.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Rtn Nasreen Masood highlights Rotary’s objectives in Radio interview

The President-Elect of the Rotary Club of Karachi Airport (RCKA), Rtn Nasreen Masood, was interviewed by Bushra Noor Khawaja in the popular ‘Prime Time Hour’ by Radio Pakistan on April 27. It was broadcast live on FM 93 as well.

It was a lively one-hour informative session, conducted by a seasoned campaigner, which was made even more entertaining by punctuating it with quite a few popular songs.

Excerpts from the interview:

Q: Would you like to share with our listeners when did you start your career as a social worker?
A: It was more than a decade ago when I got engaged in social work. I am one of the founding members of Rotary Club of Karachi Airport (RCKA) which was chartered in 2008. I was elected unopposed as its President last year.

Q: Rotary motto of ‘Service Above Self’ is truly inspirational. How do you meet the challenge?
A: Rotary International is one of the top voluntary organizations of the world. We have a proper system in place. We act in accordance with our bye-laws. We hold weekly meetings of our club which help considerably in letting us accomplish our goals.

Q: How do you work on your projects?
A: In our weekly meetings we deliberate on the various aspects of the projects to be undertaken. Every member is provided the opportunity and encouraged to play his or her part. It can be in terms of cash or kind. All of us are volunteers. We devote our time and energies. Our Board finalizes the finer details and then the members are assigned tasks in light of commitments they make. The progress of the projects is monitored in our meetings. We work on short-term as well as long-term projects.

Q: How do you motivate your members?
A: Mostly the Rotarians are committed people. We, the resourceful ones, understand our responsibilities to the community and we try to contribute as much as we could to help those who deserve it.

Q: How do you reach the needy people?
A: We just need to keep our eyes and ears open while commuting. Day in and day out we come across people who need our support. We are flooded with requests for help at times. After proper verification we extend them as much support as we could by pooling our resources.

Q: What are the responsibilities of Rotary President?
A: Every Rotarian has a responsibility. The President is just the captain of the team for a term of one year. Our elections are held every year. The President tries to lead by example to let the others take the cue and perform more actively. In my opinion election to the post of the President its an incentive to work harder and create more resources.

Q: Which project has given you the highest satisfaction?
A: It was setting up a dispensary in Sector 11-D of North Karachi. While driving there, I had noticed an elderly man standing between lots of kids in front of a gate. As I drew closer it was discovered that the gentleman was Rahmat Bhai who was providing education free of cost to the area children at his own house.

We sent our club officials there to extract more details and then our meeting was arranged with him. He desired operating a dispensary in the portion of his house and sought our assistance to facilitate free medicine and consultation to the area people, who couldn’t afford costs. We readily agreed. We collected medicines and then persuaded a qualified doctor to work two hours daily on voluntary basis. The dispensary is still running and it gives me enormous satisfaction.

Q: What are your cherished goals now?
A: The eradication of polio is on top of the list of our priorities at the moment. Rotary’s National Polio Plus Committee, headed by our dynamic former Governor Aziz Memon, has been trying its level best to eradicate this deadly disease from Pakistan. On our part we are convincing the mothers to take the responsibility of saving their children. No mother wants her kid to be affected by polio. She has to be explained and made responsible. They have to be taught that it would be a criminal negligence to deprive their children of the polio drops that are being provided at their doorstep.  

Q: Who inspired you to take to social work?
A: I have been thoroughly impressed with the spirit and passion of Abdul Sattar Edhi. I always wondered how he worked so selflessly and so effectively round the clock. He was been there everywhere. He takes care of the elderly parents who are deserted by their own children. Similarly he adopts the kids who are abandoned by their parents. It’s quite astonishing how he manages to do so much of work. I am a greater admirer of his. I know that I can’t be like him but I derive inspiration from his acts and try to contribute my bit.

Q: Do you get any time for recreation?
A: To be honest I don’t get much spare but I listen to music whenever possible.

Q: Who are your favourite singers?
A: Noor Jahan and Mohammad Rafi.

Q: What kind of songs you prefer to listen?
A: I am fond of ghazals. I have liked slow songs from beginning.

Q: Tell us about your family.
A: My husband is a mechanical engineer, who secured gold medal at the NED University. He has been working abroad a multinational for the last few years. Both my sons are also engineers, with the elder one having got married just recently.

Q: What kind of mother you have turned out to be?
A: Well I have never compromised on discipline. I didn’t allow my sons to go out once they were back from school with the focus being on studies. I taught them to ignore the mistakes of others and not to get provoked. Both my sons are greatly indebted to me now for having being strict when they were not in a position to find out themselves what was good for them and what was not.

Q: What’s your message to our listeners? A: I will urge the people not to lose hope. You must remain positive and your face should be glowing. Nobody leads an ideal life. The hardships are to be faced with courage. Don’t lose heart when things don’t go your way. Continue working hard because there are no short-cuts to success. If you wish to bring about a change in your lives you must work hard.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Pakistan's engineers and technologists can surmount weak economic conditions: Engr Z A Nizami

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi

The Chancellor Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology, Engr Z A Nizami, has expressed the strong conviction that the qualified engineers and technologists can combat the forces responsible for weak economic conditions of the country and financial constraints in the way of progress.

“They do have the capacity to find ways and means to transform poverty into plenty”, he observed in an interview.

The SSUET, he pointed out, has been playing a major role in equipping the youth with technical education during the last two decades and today its graduates were working on highly important positions in the national and multi-national institutions.

“They are serving in army and civil departments successfully and working as researchers, innovators and making new breakthroughs, not only in Pakistan but also in Europe, US and many other foreign countries like Australia and New Zealand,” he added.

The university, he said, is working under a well managed system and in order to achieve its outlying objectives, its strategies are developed in the light of growing demands and technical knowledge.

Referring to the progress achieved during the last couple of decades, Chancellor Nizami informed that starting with a budget of mere Rs 17.22 million in 1994, its annual budget today stood at Rs 712.3 million.

Since its inception, he said, the university has provided latest equipment worth Rs 370 million to its laboratories besides spending Rs 195 million on buildings and structures – and all this without any financial assistance from the government.

Engr Nizami said the performance of the university can be judged from the spate of admissions being sought by students not only from Karachi but any parts of the country. He said this year 3878 applications were received for admission to six engineering disciplines. Of them 374 applicants had secured above 80 percent marks, 1381 above 70 percent marks and rest above 60 percent marks.

He pointed out that starting with a strength of only 200 students in 1994, SSUET today has over 5600 students on its roll and since 1998, this institution produced around 9820 graduate engineers.

At present, he said, 22 Ph.Ds were serving as faculty members in various departments of Computer, Civil, Electronics, Bio-Medical and Telecommunication engineering besides Computer science while 15 faculty members were pursuing Ph.D programs from this university and a same number pursuing higher studies abroad.

Replying a question, the Chancellor said that the university was founded under the very mission and vision of great educationist and reformer Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and as such no student is rejected admission merely because of his/her financial constraint.

He said the university had been liberally assisting deserving and merited students and during 2011-12 alone, it provided Rs 40 million worth of scholarship. In addition the University provided Rs 10 million as financial assistance to deserving students and Rs 2.3 million to deserving employees.

Engr Nizami reiterated that SSUET was the outcome of Aligarh spirit, which had been inculcated in the members of Aligarh Muslim University Old Boys Association (AMUOB), the sponsors of the university, during their stay at Aligarh Muslim University.

He said that the AMUOBA had the strong feeling that education and particularly the technical education provides solution for all the problems of Pakistan and they wanted to establish the university in conformity with the philosophy of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and their success crowned in 1994.

The Chancellor pointed out that in order to adorn the students with Aligarh spirit, the Aligarh Movement is being taught as a subject in the SSUET.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Justice Sabihuddin Ahmed: a profile

Justice Sabihuddin Ahmad, who had an illustrious career as a jurist was born in 1949 in Hyderabad (Sindh). He obtained his early education from different parts of the country, his M.A from Punjab University in 1969, and LLB from the University of Karachi.

Justice Ahmed enrolled in the legal profession in 1972 and started his law practice with a leading lawyer, Khalid M. Ishaque. He was also a member of the Sindh High Court Bar Association and the Supreme Court Bar Association, and appeared before superior courts in important civil and constitutional cases.

He was a founder-member of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) and served as its vice-president from 1987 to 1990. He also participated in several international conferences on human rights and allied issues. He contributed several articles to newspapers and periodicals on constitutional human rights issues.

He was elevated as a judge of the Sindh High Court (SHC) in January 1997. He also participated in several international judicial conferences inside and outside the country, and was elected as a member of the International Advisory council of the International Centre for Promotion of Human Rights, as well as the steering committee of the South Asia Forum for legal education on gender issues.

He was appointed as the SHC chief justice (CJ) on April 28, 2005, after the elevation of the then-SHC CJ, Saiyed Saeed Ashhad, to the Supreme Court (SC). He was deposed by former president, Gen. (retd) Pervez Musharraf, on November 3, 2007, after the proclamation of emergency and the imposition of the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO).

Justice Ahmed, however, accepted a reappointment offer by the present Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) government a as judge of the Supreme Court and re-joined the judiciary in September last year. He had been serving as an SC judge since.

He was also a member of a five-member SC bench that was dealing with Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leaders Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif’s review appeals in their disqualification matter. The five-member bench had suspended the SC judgment last month and ordered the restoration of Shahbaz Sharif as the Punjab Chief Minster.

During his 11-year-long judicial carrier, he delivered many landmark judgments in constitutional, human rights, service and civil matters. While dealing with cases of missing citizens, he took serious notice of the indifferent attitude of government in ascertaining the whereabouts of missing persons and observed that protection of life and liberty of citizen was responsibility of the government.

He also took suo moto notice over siege of Sindh High Court and city courts by miscreants on May 12, 2007 prior to the arrival of Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry in Karachi.

In his recent SC judgment in a human rights case regarding bonded labourers, he declared that High Court had the plenary powers to positively enforce fundamental rights not merely against “public authorities but even private authorities” observing habeas corpus petitions could not be dismissed on the grounds that alternate remedies were available to detained persons. He was also a member of Board of Trustee of Aga Khan and Board of Governors, Hamdard University.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Pir Sahib Pagara


He was born in pir Goth on 22nd November1928. He had his primary education at pir Jo Goth. During arrest of his father, Education was looked after by kalifas at Dargah Sharif. His circumcision was perfumed at Grange bungalow near Sanghar.

From 8th May 1943 to 1946.
In1946 he was kept under house arrest along with his Younger brother and family members in Karachi.He stayed three years Aligrah from 1943 to 1946.in 1946 he was shifted by Ship to liver pool (ENGLAND) In England he was admitted in Majiour Davis Private School and was under arrested. This private school was no less than a hell.

This was in far flung rural area near hero in pioneer. There were only 12-13 students in this school all from foreign countries belonging to those families who opposed British rule in their countries. In this school he had no choose of subjects, but to study whatever administration said. He was forced to study a Christianity subject of Divinity to Learn French and Latin.
In 1949 Prime Minister Liaqut Ali Khan met him in England and assured of restoration of Status of Pir Pagara On 4th February 1952 his status of pir Pagara was officially restored and Dasterbandi was done.


Then for some time at Karachi when he was under house arrest from 1946 he got his education at Aligarh.
In Aligarh Kazi Sadrruddin a prosecuting Inspector Police used to teach Quran. From 1946 to 1952 in Liver pool [England] in Major Davis school as told above. He had his graduation from England.

Present Pir Sahib has great dominating and impressing personality. Pir Sahib is very kind hearted sympathetic, courageous and brave man. Immediately after restoration of Gadi he had many challenges. Most important challenge was to restore the image of Hur Jamat. British during last 30 years had tarnished the image of Jamat and projected the Jamat as terrorist. It was a big task to clarify the position of the Jamat to organize the scattered and absconded Jamat and to restore confidence in Jamat. He took special interest in education of Jamat and to make Jamat law abiding and peaceful citizens. He tried for academic as well as religious education. He got hur scholar-ship sanctioned by Government for poor hur students.
Philanthropic people in Jamat also supported the poor, intelligent and deserving hur students. Pir Sahib him self also paid educational expenses of poor and deserving hur students. Pir Sahib repeatedly stressed the need of education particularly higher education both males and females.
For religious education Pir Sahib on May 1952 established Jamia Rashidia at Dargah Sharif. Management and expenses of jamia was the responsibility of Dargah. By now there are about eight branches of Jamia Rashdia in different cities of Sindh from where thousands of muftis, hafiz of Quran, Molvi, Alams, and Fazils are produced who are serving in different cities of Sindh. He had established a beautiful library at Dargah Sharif which has lacks of valuable and precious books. Though he is heavily busy, he is the only leader in Pakistan who attends his telephone personally, directly, so it is very easy to talk to him for any problem. Pir Sahib married in 1954 to daughter of Makhdoom Maliak Syed Ghulam Miran Shah Pir Sahib has three sons, Sibghtullah Shah [Raga sain], Ali Gohar Shah, Sadaruddin Shah[Younis sain].
After restoration of Gadi he called all the absconders of hur Jamat at Dargah Sharif, took their photographs personally. Those having major cases were handed to Government and advised to face cases and almost all of them were freed as the cases were false. Those who had minor cases or no cases were asked to live peace fully like law abiding Citizens. After consultation with Khalifas and seeking permission form Government in 1952 Pir Sahib made a program to meet Jamat and tour the different areas. He came to hunting first in Makhi and Awadh. Till that time Hurs were in concentration camps. Some people advised him to go to camps so that followers inside camps can see him. He refused and said I will burn all these camps. It happened so, that after a few days all camps caught fire. Any way the inmates of camps were brought out side of camps in groups to see their leader. Pir Pagara never visited any foreign country except England [during arrest] and Saudi Arabia [for religious obligations]. Pir Pagara has no account or property in any foreign country.


Pir Sahib is very fond of Hunting some areas as Awadh is reserved for.

Pir Sahib hunting where no body else is allowed to hunt.

Pir Sahib is very fond of horses and horse racings. He has many horses of high breed, which often win the races Karachi race club has been restored only with Pir Sahib's efforts.

Forecasting is also hobby of Pir Sahib. His Political forecast often comes true.


Hur movement was actually started in the days of Sibghtullah Shah Bad Shah.[1831-1779]and reached its peak in the days Sibghtullah Shah Shaheed Suraih Bad Shah, Hurs become active against britishers, so rulers sent every active person to Vasarpur district Ahmed Nangar for Jail in India.

Sibghatullah Shah 1 provided forces to Syed Ahmed Shaheed to fight against Sikhs and since then these brave people are called as Hurs [free people] freedom struggle was practically started by Syed Sibghtullah Shah Shaheed Awal in 1246[Hijri].

Pagaras' and their followers fought for freedom against British rulers and their supporters for 108 years from 1843 to 1951.

In 1922 when Sibghtullah Shah II [Sarah Bad Shah] becomes Pir Pagara he was only 12 years old. Very soon he realized that British officer’s behavior towards Hur Jamat or Sindhi people was insulting and Humiliating, he resented and rose voiced against British rulers. He organized, encouraged and determined to continue struggle against British rulers. As a result Marsha law was imposed by British rulers to control hur movement. Pir Sahib made Grange Bungalow as his general head quarter. He with planning recruited his followers for armed struggle. They were trained for fight and to continue armed struggle. This act of Pir Sahib raised slogan “home land or death”. After the arrest of Pir Sahib Hurs increased their activities against Government.
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Hurs started attacking Police stations, Government buildings, Railway Stations, Telephone System and irrigation system to paralyze Government and to pressurize Government to release their spiritual leader. Government as a result started arrest of Hurs and their leaders. Governments established false cases against them and punished them heavily after summary trials.

Pir Sahib had succeeded in telling his intensify their struggle and activities if he is arrested. Railway train Lahore mail was derailed by Hurs on 16th may 1942.
When Hurs attacked army or police they raised slogan of “Bheg Pagara” . To crush Hurs, Grange Bungalow their center was bombarded and destroyed on 26th may 43. Lastly he was arrested on 24th October 1941 & was sent to seoni in India jail. Dargah Sharif & bungalow in pir Jo Goth were also destroyed in 1943.
In 1942 the important leaders of hur Jamat were also arrested. Pir Sahib was brought back from Seaoni to Sindh in January 1943 and was arrested in Hyderabad central jail. The hurs made makhi forest as their base for activities. Government when failed to control struggle by land forces, started air bombing over grange bungalow, makhi forest and Dargah Sharif.

Hurs were ordered them not to give daily attendance instead become absconder and to continue struggle and activities. Government ultimately arrested thousands of hur leaders along with their families and kept them in concentration camps [where attendance was taken in morning and evening].They were in camps till 1952 when the present Pir Sahib Pagara was crowned and Gadi was restored.

Abdul Sattar Edhi

About Edhi Foundation

Edhi established his first welfare centre and then the Bilqis Edhi Trust with a mere Rs. 5000. What started as a one-man show operating from a single room in Karachi is now the Edhi Foundation, the largest welfare organization in Pakistan. The foundation has over 300 centers across the country, in big cities, small towns and remote rural areas, providing medical aid, family planning and emergency assistance. They own air ambulances, providing quick access to far-flung areas.

In Karachi alone, the Edhi Foundation runs 8 hospitals providing free medical care, eye hospitals, diabetic centers, surgical units, a 4- bed cancer hospital and mobile dispensaries. In addition to these the Foundation also manages two blood banks in Karachi.

20,000 abandoned babies have been saved
40,000 qualified nurses have been trained
50,000 orphans are housed in Edhi Homes
1 million babies have been delivered in Edhi Maternity Centers

Edhi is to Karachi what Mother Teresa was to the poor of Calcutta. Edhi and wife Bilquees have spent a lifetime working for people and their welfare work to date remains unparalleled in Pakistan. They are both very private people who shun publicity. They have had little formal education, and are totally committed to the cause of helping the poor and needy.

The Dawn of Edhi Foundation

What started as a one-man show operating from a single room in Karachi is now the Edhi Foundation, the largest welfare organization in Pakistan. The foundation has over 300 centers across the country, in big cities, small towns and remote rural areas, providing medical aid, family planning and emergency assistance.

Born in 1928 in Bantwa , Gujarat, India , Edhi’s family belonged to the industrious Memon community. From a young age his mother taught Edhi to be kind towards others and to help the poor. In 1947 the family migrated to Pakistan and settled in Karachi. That was a time of great emotional trauma and social and political upheaval. Edhi became involved in social work and began working with welfare organisations and soon started his own dispensary, providing medical aid to the poor. He bought his first ambulance, an old van which he called the "poor man’s van" and went around the city providing medical help and burying unclaimed bodies. His van became his advertisement and soon he came to be known for his work with the poor. As a consequence, donations started pouring in and his operations expanded, employing additional nurses and staff. It was here that Edhi met his wife Bilquees who was a trainee nurse at the dispensary. They were married in 1966. Bilquees became the ideal wife for Edhi, totally committed to welfare work.

Edhi established his first welfare centre and then the Edhi Trust with a mere Rs. 5000 [$1000]. The Edhi Foundation grew as people began to recognize its humanitarian aims. In 1973 when an old apartment building collapsed in Karachi, Edhi’s ambulances and volunteers were the first to reach the scene and start rescue operations. From then, on, through the troubles in Karachi and all over the country, Edhi’s ambulances have been rescuing and taking the injured to hospitals and burying unclaimed bodies. They go to places where even government agencies hesitate to venture.

The Edhi Foundation is the first of its kind in South Asia that owns air ambulances, providing quick access to far-flung areas. Whether it is a train accident or a bomb blast, Edhi ambulances are the first to arrive. The foundation relies on the support of its 3, 500 workers and thousands of volunteers who form the backbone of the organisation

Edhi's Founder

Despite the growth of the foundation, Edhi remains a very down to earth person. Dressed always in a grey homespun cotton, he has a hands on approach to his work, sweeping his own room and even cleaning the gutter if need be. Apart from the one room, which he uses for his living quarters, the rest of the building serves as his workplace in Mithadar, a locality of old Karachi that is full of narrow streets and congested alleyways. Adjoining their living room is a small kitchen where Bilquees usually prepares the midday meal. Next to it is a washing area where bodies are bathed and prepared for burial..

When Edhi is not travelling to supervise his other centres, a typical day for him begins at five in the morning with Fajr prayers. His work starts thereafter answering any calls for help, organizing and meeting people in need while afternoons are spent at various centres and hospitals all over the city. In the evening he dines with hundreds of poor at his "langar" [free community meals common among Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs] at another Edhi centre in the city. His Fridays are invariably spent at homes for the destitute children where Edhi personally helps bathe the ones who are physically handicapped, before joining them for Friday prayers. Occasionally, when he is able to, he also takes them out for picnics.

Assets of Edhi Foundation

In Karachi alone, the Edhi Foundation runs 8 hospitals providing free medical care, eye hospitals, diabetic centres, surgical units, a 4- bed cancer hospital and mobile dispensaries. In addition to these the Foundation also manages two blood banks in Karachi. As with other Edhi services, employed professionals and volunteers run these. The foundation has a Legal aid department, which provides free services and has secured the release of countless innocent prisoners.

Commissioned doctors visit jails on a regular basis and also supply food and other essentials to the inmates. There are 15 " Apna Ghar" ["Your Homes"] homes for the destitute children, runaways, and psychotics and the Edhi Foundation states that over the years 3 million children have been rehabilitated and reunited with their families thorough the Edhi network.

The foundation also has an education scheme, which apart from teaching reading and writing covers various vocational activities such as driving, pharmacy and para-medical training. The emphasis is on self-sufficiency. The Edhi Foundation has branches in several countries where they provide relief to refugees in the USA , UK , Canada , Japan , and Bangladesh . In 1991 the Foundation provided aid o victims of the Gulf war and earthquake victims in Iran and Egypt .

Vision Of the Foundation

Edhi plans mass campaigns against narcotics, illiteracy, population control and basic hygiene. Edhi's wife Bilquees works in the areas of maternity centre management. She runs 6 nursing training schools in Karachi , which provide basic training courses. These centres have so far trained over 40,000 qualified nurses. Some 20,000 abandoned babies have been saved and about a million babies have been delivered in the Edhi maternity homes. Bilquees also supervises the food that is supplied to the Edhi hospitals in Karachi . The total number of orphans in Edhi housing is 50,000 and Edhi's two daughters and one son assist in the running of the orphanages and the automation of these institutions.

Edhi's vision is to create an institution that will carry on his life's work and survive for a long time to come. His dream is that of a Pakistan as a modern welfare state, which provides a safety net for the poor and needy while providing basic health and education with vocational skills. A welfare state Edhi feels is the only way to tackle Pakistan 's myriad social problems. He hopes that one day, Pakistan will be a model for other developing countries.

In 1985 Edhi received the Nishan-e-Imtiaz from the Government of Pakistan and in recognition of their services the Government of Philippines awarded Edhi & Bilquees the Magsayay award.

The Edhi Foundation refuses to take any aid from the Government, thereby maintaining its independence

Ansar Burney, Advocate

Chairman and Founder Ansar Burney Trust
It takes grit, commitment and perseverance to be a man of integrity. To be human and to act human, to be a person who is able to contribute his share for the cause of humanity in letter and spirit, to be a kind soul who feels the pain and unbearably enough to lose control, to be able to help others without any need of worldly glory, to be a person like Ansar Burney.

Everything in this universe is for others: the trees, the rivers and all other beauties of seasons and nature. The trees do not eat up their own fruit, the rivers do not drink their own water; and in the same way ‘selfless people’ like Ansar Burney live for others.

Be it the grave issue of ‘underage child camel jockeys’, the ordeal of ‘Zafran Bibi’ who was involved in a case of rape and sentenced to death by stoning, Murder of Pakistanis in Macedonia – in the name of war against terror, human trafficking of young girls for prostitution, Slavery or the illegal confinements at Guantanamo Bay; Ansar Burney has always stood as an icon of human rights.

Ansar Burney, born on August 14th 1956 at Karachi, he is son of Syed Mukhtar Ahmed Burney, and he was the first man to introduce true human rights in Pakistan a couple of decades ago.

A graduate of Masters and Law from Karachi University and honorary recipient of a PhD. in Philosophy from Sri Lanka, Ansar Burney, Advocate started his noble mission in 1980 by setting up the "Ansar Burney Trust", "Prisoners Aid Society" and "Bureau of Missing and Kidnapped Children/Persons" in Karachi Pakistan.

During his education he was a very prominent student leader, and as such, always raised his voice for justice, human dignity and civil rights. This landed him in a lot of trouble on several occasions with the military government of the time. In 1977, Ansar Burney, then aged 20, was arrested on charges of delivering speeches against Martial Law and favour of Democracy and sentenced for 8 months rigorous imprisonment by the Martial Law Court.

Upon release in 1978, the Martial Law Authorities once again arrested him and sent him to Karachi Prison for 2 more months’ detention. In 1979 he was again arrested for the third time and detained for a month.

During these periods of detention in different Pakistani prisons, Ansar Burney witnessed the miserable conditions of prisons and their prisoners. He met many people who were locked up for years and years without ever having committed a crime; forced into detention with false criminal charges.

That was the time that he decided to help those in need and in 1980-81 after completing his law degree, Ansar Burney, Advocate started working on his project to bring reforms in prisons and get the release of innocent and illegally confined prisoners. He also started working against Slavery and against human trafficking.

The Ansar Burney Trust was set up as a non-governmental, non-political and non-profitable human and civil rights organization. Its main objective was to struggle for the release of innocent persons who were kept in prisons or in mental asylums illegally or without any justification and to create awareness against human trafficking.

As a result of his continued and selfless efforts for the past so many years, Mr. Ansar Burney has so far been able to secure release of more than 750,000 (Seven hundred and fifty thousand) innocent prisoners who were illegally imprisoned in Pakistan and abroad; some released after as much as 50 to 55 years of illegal confinement.

Some were even born in prisons and mental asylums where they grew up and lived as prisoners or patients for 35 to 40 long years of their lives; only released and rehabilitated with their families and society because of the hectic efforts of Ansar Burney and the Ansar Burney Trust.

Ansar Burney also met aids affected prisoners and noticed homosexuality very common in prisons for that reason he also starts creating awareness against HIV positive (aids). He started visiting Prisons, Madrasas (Religious Schools) and prostitutes and giving them education/lectures and started working practically to create awareness and also providing them safety/protection against HIV. The Ansar Burney Trust also providing medical help to aid prisoners and HIV positive people in Pakistan.

The "Ansar Burney Trust" has also arranged release of around almost 20,000 (twenty thousand) persons from mental asylums and mental wards of prisons. These were not mental cases but were kept in these asylums in inhumane conditions by influential persons due to their own vested interests.

Mr. Burney has also been successful in tracing out around 170,000 (one hundred and seventy thousand) children through his Bureau of Missing Persons who were safely delivered to their families. These include children who were set free from bounded labor camps, underage child camel jockeys and young girls who had been sold away or trafficked for prostitution.

Once established, the Ansar Burney Trust also started their struggle to fight against the inhumane and degrading treatment of women in Pakistan and abroad. With a purpose to bring those who abused women to justice, Ansar Burney has fought several cases for the cause of women’s rights and one of the success stories has been the closure of several women “mandis” (like animal markets for the sale of girls) in Pakistan.

Ansar Burney Trust’s continued efforts became fruitful when Ansar Burney once again succeeded in getting the release of thousands of slaved underage children from ‘Modern day Slavery’. These children were from the ages of 3 years to 10 years old only. These underage children as ‘Child Camel Jockeys’ were on slavery in the Middle Eastern countries almost 16 to 17 hours a day and were living in private prisons. During their slavery these underage children were getting just two biscuits a day as food so that they should not gain weight. After the release of these children Ansar Burney sent them back to their respective countries for their rehabilitation.

Ansar Burney Trust also able to got released trafficked young girls from prostitution in Middle Eastern and European countries.

Mr. Burney has also sent/taken humanitarian aid to different parts of Pakistan as well abroad. During the drought in Pakistan, Mr. Burney personally visited several affected areas and supervised the humanitarian aid operation to the region by the ABT.

In occasions this process, Ansar Burney stumbled upon the use of Hindu “Haris” (Bonded Labourers) as slaves in the interior Sindh Province of Pakistan. After some hectic efforts and persistence, the Trust was successful in freeing around 7,000 “Haris”; a 160 of who in danger of being attacked by their previous owners were taken in by the Trust and relocated to a more secure location.

Currently, Ansar Burney and the Ansar Burney Trust have been working round the clock to put a stop to the smuggling and trafficking of children and young girls and their use as camel jockeys and prostitution in the Middle East, to date, a 1100 children some as young as 3 years to 12 years of age have been released from camps in the UAE alone.

In 1984, the Chief Martial Law Administrator of Pakistan, General Mohammed Zia-ul-Haque, twice offered Mr. Burney the position of Federal Minister of Pakistan; an offer Mr. Burney refused in order to stay impartial and unaffiliated and to continue his human rights work without any political reservations or activities. Since then he has on several been offered ministerial and political positions but has refused, re-emphasizing the Trust’s nature as a truly independent and non-political organization. However, he took charge as Federal Minister for Human rights in the non-political interim set-up in 2007. On November 16, 2007, Ansar Burney was sworn in as Pakistani Federal Minister for Human Rights - to head the newly established Human Rights Ministry of Pakistan, first such Ministry in the history of Pakistan. He managed the Human Rights Ministry with a sense of duty and great passion..

However, positive attention is not all Mr. Burney has received. His work has resulted in the making of many enemies. He has been attacked several times and continually receives death threats. His name is on the "Terrorist Hit List" which was leaked into newspapers from Pakistani Intelligence Agencies. Ansar Burney Trust offices have been attacked and employees killed. Members of the Burney family have also been attacked and severely injured.

Ambulances of the Trust have been fired upon, burnt and stoned by persons against whom Mr. Burney has fought human rights cases. The attacks continue to this day...

In relation to his human and civil rights work, Ansar Burney, Advocate has attended hundreds of National and International conferences, groups and forums. In recognition of his great human and civil rights work, he has received well over 200 awards and medals from home as well as from abroad.

On 23rd March 2002, he was conferred with Pakistan’s National Civil Award "Sitar-i-Imtiaz", the first national award in the history of Pakistan in the field of human rights. Ansar Burney was officially declared an 'Anti-Human Trafficking Hero' in 2005 “ by the United States, State Department. Ansar Burney, in March 2008, elected as Member / Expert Advisor in the United Nations Human Rights Council Advisory Committee at Geneva, one out of 18 elected from throughout the world.

Whenever a natural calamity such as earthquake or flood hits Pakistan, ‘Ansar Burney Trust’ is there to lend a helping hand. Ansar Burney and his wife Shaheen Burney take pride in helping others. They derive pleasure by sharing smiles and restoring honor and dignity to downtrodden people.

Mr. Ansar Burney, Advocate got married with Shaheen on May 28, 1981 and they have three children Fahad Burney, Raheel Burney and daughter Sana Burney.

As pakistani we are proud that we have Ansar Burney in Pakistan.