Tribute to the “white” of Pakistani flag1,536 views
Credit : Junaid Zuberi
This article is created to recognize, applaud and appreciate the services of non Muslim Pakistanis that the white color of our flag represents.
Group Captain Cecil Chaudhry was a Pakistani Christian, academic, human rights activist, and veteran fighter pilot. As a Flight Lieutenant, he fought in the Indo-Pakistani war of 1965 and later, as a Squadron Leader, in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. During the 1965 war, Chaudhry and three other pilots, under the leadership of Wing Commander Anwar Shamim, destroyed the Amritsar Radar Station in a difficult attack. He was awarded the Sitara-e-Jurat (Star of Courage) for his actions during that mission.
Ardeshir Cowasjee is a leading philanthropist, businessman and columnist based in Karachi. He is the Chairman of Cowasjee Group and is engaged in philanthropic activities apart from being regarded as an old ‘guardian’ of the city of Karachi. Ardeshir Cowasjee is also the financier of many scholarships for students wishing to pursue higher education. These include grants for both local and overseas education. Although these are given out as loans, it is not expected that most of these funds will be returned to him. However, Cowasjee does encourage the receivers to return them so that others can benefit from those funds. These philanthropic services are provided by the Cowasjee Foundation.
Indu Mitha (née Chatterjee) is a Pakistani exponent of Bharatnatyam, a form of Indian classical dance. She is also a faculty member at the Rawalpindi campus of the National College of the Arts. Her family moved to Delhi from Lahore during the Partition of India. In Delhi, she learned Bharatanatyam from Vijay Raghava Rao and Shrimati Lalita. To suit Pakistani cultural norms, Mitha has altered the performance and style of the Bharatnatyam she teaches and has composed Bharatnatyam songs in Urdu.
Deena M. Mistri was an educationist from Pakistan. Mrs. Mistri finished her Bachelors of Arts from the Bombay University in 1945. It is after completing her B.A. that she started visiting the Bai Virbaijee Soparivala (BVS) Parsi High School Karachi. She started teaching English to the secondary classes at the B.V.S. in 1951. She was the first lady teacher to teach the secondary classes during those days. She completed her B.Ed. with Honors in 1958 from the University of Karachi. While she was teaching at the B.V.S. she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship from the US in 1961, where she completed her Diploma in Education. In America she taught at the University of Athens – Ohio and at the University of Austin – Texas as a visiting professor. She was given Honorary Citizenship to Texas from Governor Price Daniel in 1962 for teaching at a local high school in Austin and as a visiting Professor at UT Austin. On her way back from the States she was invited by the British Council to observe the British teaching system in London. Mrs. Deena M. Mistri served the Bai Virbaijee Soparivala Parsi High School for 55 years. The same school that was founded by her great grand father Seth Shapurji Hormusji Soparivala – in 1859.
Byram Dinshawji Avari is a prominent Pakistani businessman and twice Asian Games gold medalist. Together with his sons, Dinshaw and Xerxes, he owns and operates the Avari Group of companies, of which he is the chairman. Hotel management is the Avari Group’s core business. In Pakistan, the group owns and operates Avari Hotels which includes 5-star deluxe hotel in Lahore, the 5-star Avari Towers and the seafront Beach Luxury Hotel in Karachi. The group is also actively pursuing opportunities for owning and/or managing 3 and 4-star properties elsewhere in Pakistan. The Avari Group is the first Pakistani company to have obtained international hotel management contracts: they operate the 200-room 4-star hotel in Dubai in United Arab Emirates and manage the 200-room Ramada Inn in Toronto at Pearson Airport in Canada. Avari is the Honorary Consul, or diplomatic representative, for Canada.
Anil Dalpat Sonavaria was the first Hindu ever to play Test cricket for Pakistan. Dalpat was a lower-order batsman and wicket keeper, and represented Pakistan for a brief interval in the early 1980s as a replacement of Wasim Bari.
Antao D’Souza is a former Pakistani cricketer who played in six Tests from 1959 to 1962. He was the fourth Christian to play Test cricket for Pakistan. He was a medium pace bowler and tail-end obdurate batsman.
Aban Marker Kabraji, Pakistan’s leading environmentalist is working as Regional Director IUCN, World Conservation Union. In this position, she is overseeing IUCN in 23 countries of the region. In addition to these responsibilities, Ms. Kabraji serves on a number of advisory boards, and committees. Winner of numerous global awards, Ms Kabraji was a visiting Professor at Yale University in 2004, where she taught Master and PhD level courses in development and conservation issues and is still a member of their External Advisory Board.
Arthur Nayyar, known popularly as A Nayyar is a leading Pakistani playback singer. He was one of the most popular singers of our film industry in 70s and 80s. Besides he sung many ghazals and geets for Pakistan Television and earned much acclaim.
Anthony Theodore Lobo is a Pakistani Roman Catholic bishop. Bishop Lobo has made important contributions to education in the country. He has been the Principal of St. Lawrence’s Boys School, Karachi and later Saint Patrick’s High School, Karachi. In November 1986 he founded St. Michael’s Convent School. He is the author of many books on education. In recognition of his services to the cause of literature and education, the President of Pakistan conferred on him the President’s “Pride of Performance ” Award in 1990. In Order to bring change to the Pakistani education system, he sought assistance from Australia to create the Notre Dame Institute of Education in Karachi in 1991. He is recognized as a leading educationist and has held several important positions with different universities and education boards.
Bapsi Sidhwa is a renowned novelist and published author of Pakistani origin who writes in English and is resident in America. She is best known for her collaborative work with Indo-Canadian filmmaker Deepa Mehta: Sidhwa wrote both the 1991 novel Ice Candy Man which served as the basis for Mehta’s 1998 film Earth as well as the 2006 novel Water: A Novel which is based upon Mehta’s 2005 film Water. She has previously taught at the University of Houston, Rice University, Columbia University, Mount Holyoke College, and Brandeis University.
Danish Prabha Shanker Kaneria is a Pakistani cricketer. He has continued the tradition of great Pakistani leg spin bowlers and possesses a very well disguised googly. In Test matches, Kaneria holds the record for most wickets by any Pakistani spin bowler and fourth on the list of most Test wickets over all, only behind Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Imran Khan.
Duncan Albert Sharpe is a former Pakistani cricketer who played in three Tests in 1959. Sharpe made his Test debut against Australia on 13 November 1959. He top scored for Pakistan in both innings, scoring 56 and 35. He was dropped for the next series and emigrated to Australia in 1960. He played Sheffield Shield cricket with South Australia alongside the likes of Gary Sobers.
Born in Lahore in 1935, Billy Ibadulla was an articulate right handed opening batsman who played four tests for Pakistan between 1964 and 1967. He was a member of the first team to step out of the county touring India in 1952 but never got a chance to pad in that series. However, Billy immediately made an impact with a crafty 166 on debut against Australia in Karachi. He went on to score 22 first class centuries and bagged 462 wickets. Regarded as a brilliant close in fielder he also pocketed 337 catches.
Gool K. Minwalla, a leading educationist and social worker has decades of services to her credit. As member of APWA and Karachi Theosophical Society, she rendered many services specially in the area of education. In the 1950s she formed in Karachi a Branch of the Theosophical Order of Service, [the social welfare arm of the Theosophical Society.] The Order is still very active and deeply involved with an educational support programme for needy school and college students, a Montessori School for low income families, literacy programmes in poverty-stricken areas, and relief and rehabilitation of destitute individuals and families. She also founded and remained involved with different Montessoris and schools in Karachi.
Irene Perveen is a Pakistani playback singer from the 1960s, who mainly sung for Pakistani films. Parveen started her career in 1958’s film Noor-e-Islam. Parveen had famous duets with Masood Rana and Ahmed Rushdi. Her main reason of popularity was her pair with singer Ahmed Rushdi. She sang many hit songs for the films, and made much impact in the East Pakistani Industry too.
Jagan Nath Azad was a renowned Urdu poet, writer and academician. A literary giant, Azad penned over 70 books, including poetry collections, epic poems, biographies and travelogues. He was an acclaimed authority on the life, philosophy and works of Dr Sir Allama Mohammad Iqbal. Azad’s books (in Urdu and English) on Allama Iqbal are recognised as the “definitive reference” in the Urdu-speaking world. He served as President of the Iqbal Memorial Trust for a term of five years. During his life Azad was the honoured recipient of numerous awards for his contribution to Urdu Literature and work on Allama Iqbal. Both the Governments of India & Pakistan (central & regional) presented him with trophies & citations. He is also accredited with writing Pakistan’s first national anthem at the request of Quaid-e-Azam.
Jamshed Nusserwanjee Mehta was the first elected Mayor of Karachi and remembered as the “Maker of Modern Karachi”. He was also a notable figure in the Pakistan Boy Scouts Association. In 1918, Mehta was elected a councillor of the Karachi Municipal Corporation. He was soon elected the President of the Corporation. He served in that capacity for 12 years and become the first Mayor of the city. He transformed the city into a great and important metropolis in his years as local politician. As a member of the Sindh Legislative Assembly, he served every field of human life and activity. He was the father of Scouting in Sindh as well as in Karachi and one of the founder members of the Boy Scout Movement in India, and later on in Pakistan. He was the Deputy Chief Commissioner of the GHQ and its Honorary Treasurer. Pakistan’s Sea Scout landing craft is named after him.
Jamsheed Kaikobad Ardeshir Marker, Hilal-e-Imtiaz is a veteran Pakistani diplomat. He is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as having been ambassador to more countries than any other person. He speaks English, Urdu, Gujarati, French,German, and Russian and was Pakistan’s top envoy to the United States and more than a dozen other countries for more than three decades and earned the distinction as the world’s longest-serving ambassador. He was a radio cricket commentator. His first broadcast was from the Karachi stadium. he originally worked in his family’s “shipping and pharmaceutical” businesses, and moved into diplomacy in 1965 when he was appointed Pakistan’s ambassador to Ghana.
Jogendranath Mandal was one of the central and leading Founding Fathers of modern state of Pakistan, and legislator serving as country’s first minister of law and labor, and also was second minister of commonwealth and Kashmir affairs. An Indian and later Pakistani statesman who served as the first minister of law and labour inPakistan. As leader of the Scheduled Castes, Jogendranath had made common cause with the Muslim League in their demand for Pakistan, hoping that the Scheduled Castes would be benefited from it and joined the first cabinet in Pakistan as the Minister of Law and Labour.
Chief Justice Alvin “Bobby” Robert Cornelius, Hilal-e-Pakistan, was the Pakistani jurist and judge, serving as the 4th Chief Justice of Pakistan from 1960 until 1968. Alvin Robert Cornelius became the first Christian Chief Justice, becoming one of the most famous and influential figures ever to serve on the supreme court. After his departure from the supreme court, Cornelius remained influential and was a symbol protecting the rights of minorities, freedom of religious practices, whilst serving as the legal adviser to successive Government of Pakistan on judicial matters. His opinions, according to legal scholars in Pakistan, were some of the greatest defences of “freedom of religion” written by a Christian Chief Justice of a Muslim state.
Julius Salik is a Pakistani Christian and activist for minority rights based in Islamabad. In 1996, he founded the World Minorities Alliance to advocate for the social status of minorities, initially religious minorities in Pakistan – including Buddhism, Christians, Hindus, and Sikhs. That same year, he was nominated by Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Minocher Bhandara, popularly known as Minoo, was a Pakistani businessman and former minority representative and member of the National Assembly of Pakistan. He was the architect and owner of one of the most successful and durable business conglomerates in Pakistan. Amongst his companies was the Murree Brewery, which his father had bought a control share in during the 1940s. He leaves behind a legacy of enlightened political activism. Bhandara, was active as a minority representative and served as MNA from 2002 to 2007. Minoo also wrote articles in the country’s English language newspapers.
Michael James Nazir-Ali was the 106th Bishop of Rochester in the Church of England: he retired in September 2009, taking up a position as director of the Oxford Centre for Training, Research, Advocacy and Dialogue. He holds dual citizenship of both Pakistan and Britain. Nazir-Ali was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1976 and worked in Karachi and Lahore. He became the first Bishop of Raiwind in West Punjab (1984–86), at the time he the youngest bishop in the Anglican Communion. In 1986, he left Pakistan for UK. He was appointed Bishop of Rochester, England in 1994, and in 1999 entered the House of Lords as one of the “Lords Spiritual” because of his seniority in episcopal office, the first religious leader from Asia to serve there. He was one of the final two candidates for Archbishop of Canterbury, though Rowan Williams was appointed.
Raja Tridiv Roy was a former Raja of the Chakma tribe in the Chittagong Hill Tracts region ofBangladesh who chose to remain a Pakistani when Bangladesh was created in 1971. He was also a writer, Buddhist religious leader and politician in Pakistan. He served as ambassador of Pakistan to Argentina from the 1980s. A Buddhist by faith, Raja Tridiv Roy, left East Pakistan and came and joined the government of then president of Pakistan Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in the seventies. This despite the fact that he won the elections in 1971 as an independent candidate from his constituency. Roy’s other distinction was that at one point he was also offered the position ofPresident of Pakistan by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who himself had assumed the prime ministership of the country. When Bhutto was deposed in 1977, Raja Tridiv Roy was carted off in 1981 on an ambassadorship to far away Argentina. He returned to Islamabad in 1996. Since then, he was head of the Pakistan Buddhist Society.
Mr. Justice Retired Rana Bhagwandas a highly respected name of the Pakistani judiciary was a senior judge and former acting chief justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (CJP). He remained the acting CJP during the 2007 judicial crisis in Pakistan and also briefly became the acting Chief Justice of Pakistan when the incumbent Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry went on foreign tours in 2005 and 2006. Rana Bhagwandas is now working as the Chairman of Federal Public Service Commission of Pakistan. He is heading the interview panel for the selection of the Federal Civil Servants 2009.
Rupinder “Rup” Singh Magon is a Canadian / Pakistani singer, songwriter, producer, actor and author born and raised in Montreal. He is a co-lead singer of JoSH, a South Asian fusion band. He has also acted in a sports comedy film and will soon be publishing his first book on cooking.
Justice Rustam Sohrabji Sidhwa was a former judge on the Supreme Court of Pakistan as well as one of the original eleven judges of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Judge Sidhwa commenced his career at the Bar in 1951 and was appointed to the Bench in 1978. He served on the Lahore High Court and as a Judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan from 1989 to 1992. In 1968, he had been nominated by Pakistan to the United Nations Register of Experts in Legal and other Fields.
Sunny Benjamin John, popularly known as S. B. John, is a noted singer. he started his singing career from Radio Pakistan in 1950. His inspiration was his grandfather who was a singer. His first music teacher was Pandat Ram Chandra Trivedi. When television was introduced in Karachi in 1967, John began singing gospel music on Christmas Eve on Pakistan Television. He also performed in stage shows inKarachi. John rose to fame by recording to music popular Urdu poetry known as ghazals. His best known song was for the 1959 film ‘Savera’. The composer was Master Manzoor Hussain, and lyrics were written by Fayyaz Hashmi. For four decades his songs have been as popular as they were when they were first released. On August 14, 2010 President Asif Ali Zardari on the occasion of Independence Day conferred President’s Award for Pride of Performance to John for his singing.
Satish Anand is a leading Pakistani film maker, distributor, media personality and businessman. He entered the world of showbiz professionally after his father, Jessie Anand, died. The family has rendered many services to the entertainment industry since Pakistan’s independence. The family includes Indian actress Juhi Chawla, who is Satesh’s niece as well as cousin. Since his father’s death, Satesh Anand took over the business and gained success every day as a brilliant and honest man. He has produced a number of movies including Ishq, Laila, Noor-e-Islam, Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman and Hathi Meray Sathi. In 1994, Anand entered the world of television and became a well-known figure here as well. His distribution offices, Ever Ready Pictures, operate in Karachi and Lahore. He is one of Pakistan’s top film distributors.
Jharna Basak, known as Shabnam, is one of Pakistan’s most famous film actresses. Shabnam was active in the Pakistanifilm industry, Lollywood in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, and in the Bangladeshi film industry in the 1990s. Born in Dhaka, formerly a part of Pakistan called East Pakistan, she was considered a versatile, romantic and most popular actress in both West Pakistan andEast Pakistan in her time. Shabnam worked in total 160 films, including 152 Urdu films, 4 Bengali and 4 Punjabi films. Her debut film was a East Pakistani Bangali film. Her first Urdu film, i.e., Chanda was also picturised in East Pakistan.
Clement Shahbaz Bhatti, popularly known asShahbaz Bhatti, was a Pakistani politician and elected member of the National Assemblyfrom 2008.He was the first Federal Minister for Minorities Affairsfrom November 2008 until his assassination on 2 March 2011 in Islamabad.Bhatti, a Roman Catholic, was an outspoken critic of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws and the only Christian in the Cabinet. Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility for his killing.
In October 1939, Gertrude Lemmens traveled from her hometown of Venray, theNetherlands, to visit her brother, who was a missionary priest serving in Sindh and Baluchistan provinces, She accompanied him for a month on his rounds of social work in under-privileged communities. She came to be tremendously moved by how poor and needy the people were. After her return to her homeland, she felt compelled to live in a way which helped those in such poverty as she had come to know. After partition of India, she continued to live in Pakistan and dedicated her life to working selflessly for the welfare of poor and needy. In 1969 Archbishop Joseph Cordeiro, then the head of the Archdiocese of Karachi, bought a single-story property on Kashmir Road to start an English School. Sister Gertrude convinced him instead to let her utilize the property as a home for the metally handicapped. He agreed, and Darul Sukun was created. In 1970 Sister Gertrude traveled back to Holland and made TV appearances and newspaper appeals for aid for the struggling home. With help from philanthropists and Dutch companies like KLM, they managed to scrape by. The home continues to be supported by the Dutch people with approximately half a million euro being collected to finance the project between 2004 and 2008. In time, Sister Gertrude came to be described as the “Mother Teresa of Pakistan.” In recognition of her work for the homeless, the needy and the handicapped, on March 23, 1989 she received the Sitara-i-Quaid-i-Azam (Order of the Great Leader) from the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
Suneeta Marshall is a Pakistani model and television actress. She started her acting career with a telefim named “Tere bina”. Marshall was introduced into the modeling world by her aunt. She made her first appearance in a Garnier Fructis commercial and other hair products such as Pantene, Head and Shoulders and Kuene.She was also in a drama tair-e-lahoti as Mahnoor in 2008. Marshall returned as a model for Gul Ahmed. She worked with fashion designers such as Deepak Perwani, HSY, Bunto Kazmi and Nilofer Shahid. Marshall was chosen by Bunto Kazmi to model her clothes in 2000 for a Milan fashion show and later modeled for Dior and Gucci.
Wallis Mathias was the first Goan Christian to play for Pakistan. Born in Karachi, Wallis played 21 tests for Pakistan from 1955 till 1962. He was a middle order batsman who often engineered critical innings but is most remembered as a brilliant slip fielder who palmed 22 catches. His debut came against New Zealand in Dhaka in 1955 where he scored 41 not out. Wallis played a vital role in supporting Hanif Muhammad in his legendry 337 at Barbados in 1958 where he scored 17 in each innings. His love affair with Hanif Muhammad continued in Hanif’s world record 499 innings at Karachi in 1959 where he shouldered Hanif with a precious 103. His true moment came against West Indies at Dhaka in 1959 where his 64 and 45 helped Pakistan win a low scoring game. A finger injury sustained in nets forced him out of International cricket but he kept representing Karachi in domestic cricket till 1977.
Air Commodore Władysław Józef Marian Turowicz usually referred to as Air Cdre. W. J. M. Turowicz, was a prominent and noted Polish Pakistani military scientist and anaeronautical engineer. He is considered as one of the chief architects of the Pakistan Air Force and Pakistan’s space program. Turowicz, an eminent rocket scientist and an aeronautical engineer, was the leading and central figure in Pakistan’s drive to develop high-tech rocket and missile technology of its own. Turowicz was the administrator of Pakistan’s Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) from 1967 to 1970, and towards the end of his career, he was appointed to the post of Air Marshal of the Pakistan Air Force. He was one of thirty high ranking Polish pilots who served in Pakistan Air Force during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, and is considered one of the pioneers of Pakistan’s space program, playing a central role in Pakistan’s aviation and aerospace industry.
Comrade Sobho Gianchandani is a Pakistani Sindhi social scientist, and revolutionary writer. He was the first non-Muslim and non-Urdu recipient of the Pakistan’s top literary Kamal-e-Fun Award (for 2004), which is given every year to an eminent writer in recognition of his lifelong achievements in the field of literature. He is a stalwart of the Communist Party of Pakistan. Subho Gyan Chandani is a master at writing compelling short stories and the characters in his books carry on a struggle against injustices and inequality. His best-known work is titled Sobho Thindo (The day shall dawn) that portrays his tilt for social reforms that should reach the depressed Sindhi classes. He also writes poetry in which genre he is both a mystic and philosopher.
Dr. Ruth Katherina Martha Pfau is a German born nun and a member of the Society of Daughters of the Heart of Mary who has devoted the last 50 years of life to fighting leprosy in Pakistan. In 1996, Pakistan was declared by the World Health Organization to have controlled leprosy, one of the first countries in Asia to achieve this goal. Ruth Pfau is recognised in Pakistan and abroad as a distinguished human being and has been awarded many prizes and medals. Sister Ruth Pfau was among recipients of civilian awards at President’s House on Pakistan Day March 23, 1989. Sister Pfau received the Hilal-i-Pakistan award for her work with leprosy patients.Speaking at a function in Islamabad on January 30, 2000, to mark the 47th World Leprosy Day, President Rafiq Tarar praised Sister Ruth Pfau, who built up the National Leprosy Control Program in Pakistan, for working not only for those afflicted with leprosy, but also for those with TB. On the occasion of Pakistan Independence Day on 14 August 2010, the President of Pakistan awarded Nishan-i-Quaid-i-Azam, one of the highest civil awards of Pakistna, to Dr. Pfau for her public service.
Harcharan Singh is the first Sikh officer to be recruited in the Pakistan Army. Harcharan passed his matriculation from the Government Guru Nanak High School and passed his FSc (pre-engineering) in 2004 from Forman Christian College, Lahore. He then passed Inter Services Selection Board (ISSB) examination in 2006. Harcharan was commissioned into the army by the Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani on 27 October 2007 at Pakistan Military Academy at Kakul in North-West Frontier Province (NWFP).
Mr Hugh Catchpole was one of the most distinguished educationists who taught generations and left an indelible mark on his students. Born in England, he joined Prince of Wales’ Royal Indian Military College, Dehra Dun (now Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) in 1928 and went on to become its Principal in 1948. The first Pakistani Air Chief, Air Marshal Asghar Khan and his successor Air Marshal Nur Khan had been his students at RIMC. They requested him to come to Pakistan and become the founder Principal of Cadet College Hasan Abdal. He was still at Hasan Abdal when Air Marshal Asghar Khan handpicked him to join PAF Public School Sarghoda as Principal, in 1958. He stayed there till 1967 and then joined Abbottabad Public School as Head of English Department, a post he held till his very last. He died at the age of 90, on 01 February, 1997, at Combined Military Hospital, Rawalpindi. Mr Catchpole was buried with such honours as would be the envy of many. Besides being an extraordinary educationist, Mr Catchpole was a humanist and philanthropist, who remained a bachelor throughout his life and financed many students’ education with his scholarship funds in England, India and Pakistan. In his will he wished to donate all balances of his account to the institutions he had been associated with. Mr Hugh Catchpole was honoured twice by Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth. In 1971, he was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE). In 1980, the Queen awarded him Commander’s Badge of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) also called the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. In 1979, the President of Pakistan General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq conferred upon Mr Catchpole the award of “Sitara-i-Imtiaz” for his meritorious services in the field of education. On 15 June, 2007, the President of Pakistan General Pervez Musharraf conferred upon Mr Catchpole the highest civil award of Pakistan “Hilal-i-Imtiaz” posthumous for his incomparable, selfless and single minded dedication to the cause of quality education in Pakistan.
Mr. Geoffery D. Langlands, a former British colonial officer and a lifelong educationist has rendered countless services to education for well over six decades. For the past quarter-century, his home and work have been in Chitral, a sweeping district of snow-dusted peaks at the northern tip of Pakistan. The institution he ran here, the Langlands School and College, has become a watchword for excellence; each year, the best of the school’s 1,000-plus students, one-third of them girls, go on to universities in bigger cities, the United States or the United Kingdom. Mr. Langlands fought in a commando unit during World War II, assaulting German defenses on the French coast. In August 1947, he was stationed in British India, where he witnessed the bloody partition of the subcontinent at close quarters. After the other British left, Mr. Langlands stayed on, taking a teaching job at Aitchison College in Lahore, Pakistan’s most prestigious boarding school. Over a quarter-century there, he imparted algebra to the offspring of the Pakistani elite, some of whom went on to lead in politics, sports and the military. Former charges include Zafarullah Khan Jamali, who was prime minister between 2002 and 2004, and Imran Khan, the cricket hero turned politician. In 1979, he moved to North Waziristan, in the tribal belt, to run a school in a district that is today better known for American drone strikes. At the age of 94, he chose to retire and settle in Lahore, where his former students have arranged a small apartment for him on the magnificent grounds of his old school, Aitchison College. He has also, quietly, chosen his spot in one of the city’s Christian cemeteries: near the gate, he says, so friends can visit.
Hilda Saeed is a well acknowledged and respected women’s rights activist, educationist and journalist. Born in Baroda, in the Indian state of Gujarat, she grew up in Karachi. She began her professional career as a teacher and moved to journalism editing a health journal for several years. It was during this period that she also became an activist working for women’s rights, joining the Shirkat Gah Women’s Resource Center in 1978, and becoming a member of the Shirkat Collective, a position she continues to hold today. In the field of women’s rights, Hilda’s outstanding contribution has been raising awareness of women’s reproductive and sexual health rights, which were barely recognized as important when she started out. She did this through her work as a media practitioner, and by participating in dialogues with both community members and government officials. From these efforts emerged the Pakistan Reproductive Health network, of which Hilda is a founder-member. This organization, set up in 1985, has raised issues related to sexual rights. Hilda, who lives in Karachi, also works at a woman’s shelter called Panah, established by women’s and human rights groups with the help of Amnesty International. She has helped abused women at the shelter by providing them with protection, empathy, and guidance. She has represented Pakistan on many international forums.
Colin David was one of the most prominent contemporary artists of Pakistan who was most famous for his figurative nudes. Born in Karachi in 1937, Colin David began his art education at the Punjab University, Lahore, when the Fine Arts Department opened its doors to male students in 1956. After taking his MFA from the Punjab University Fine Arts Department in 1961, Colin was awarded a scholarship for post-graduate studies at the Slade School of Art, London. There he was guided by Sir William Coldstream, an artist who painted in the celebrated method of the Euston Road group. He taught at NCA in the 70s. David was awarded the President’s Pride of Performance Award in 1995.
David Chalmers Alesworth, (A.R.B.S.) was born 1957 in Oxshott in Surrey not far from Wimbledon, London UK. He is a Pakistan-based English artist. Trained originally as a sculptor, he moved to Pakistan in 1987 and engaged with the popular visual culture of South Asia and with urban crafts such as truck decoration. He teaches art in Pakistan at various institutions including currently the Beaconhouse National University, Lahore. Lately, he has also acted as a juror for the Kara Film Festival. Alesworth studied art at the Wimbledon School of Art in the tradition of late Constructivism and won the prestigious Stanley Picker Fellowship at the Kingston University. He then took up a teaching assignment at the Glasgow School of Art. His encounter with Pakistani culture, especially truck art, in the early 80s opened up his practice to a range of new materials and he moved to Pakistan in 1987. Where most of his practices were based loosely around decorative flourishes of the urban bazaars, his central themes have remained environmental degradation and nuclear proliferation influencing works like Two Bombs Kiss in 1993
Shallum Asher Xavier is a Pakistani guitarist, composer and music producer. He has been recording professionally for 15 years, and has played as a session musician and recorded with most of the renowned Pakistani mainstream artists including Ali Haider, Najam Shiraz, Zeb and Haniya,Hadiqa Kiyani, and Strings. He was one of the founding members of famous band, Fuzon. Xavier fas been awarded Best Guitarist of Pakistan 2 years running, as well as an award for Best South Asian Band and Best Composer for his composition of Khamaj. He has collaborated independently with Ingrid Kindem, Hildegun and Mocci (Fryd), and has performed with them on a number of occasions in both Pakistan and Norway.
Jimmy Engineer is an internationally acclaimed artist and humanitarian who has exhibited his work across the globe. He uses his art to promote the message of peace and tolerance while at the same time spreading a positive image of Pakistan. A recipient of Sitara-e-Hilal, Pakistan’s third highest civilian honor for his outstanding contributions to art and charitable causes, Jimmy continues his passion for making this world a better place through his artistic and humanitarian initiatives.
People who lived in Karachi in 1960s and 70s fondly remember Mr and Mrs Ghanshayam who ran a classical dance school and taught many students, some of them rose to become leading performers. Sheema Kermani is one such student. Ghanshayams were forced to leave Pakistan in early 1980s when the then military government targeted classical dance practitioners making it impossible for them to earn a decent living. Both husband and wife were students of Uday Shankar, the pioneer of modern Indian dance.
Madam Azurie was one of the most popular dancers and actresses during the prepartition years. She migrated to Pakistan somewhere around 1960. of Pakistan. Born to an Indian mother and a German father, Azurie’s real name was Anna Marie Gueizelor. It was because her that dancers became necessary ingredients in Indian/Pakistani films separate from heroines (That is especially true from 1930s to 1970s, after 1970s dancers/vamps slowly started to fade away and heroines became all in one show). It is said that famous 1940s/1950s dancer Cuckoo was greatly inspired by her dances and modeled herself after Azurie.
Naveen Tajik was one of the finest television actresses from 1970s. Besides television plays, she did movies also and made a name for herself. Her career came to an end when she quietly left showbusiness and moved out of Pakistan permanently.
Robin Ghosh was one of the most popular and leading musician and composer who has to his credit countless popular film songs. He remained active in the film industry from 1960s through 1980s. He moved back to his birth country Bangladesh together with his wife leading actress Shabnam, after retiring from film industry. Ghosh earned several awards for his memorable compositions.
Perin Cooper Boga is a veteran of theatre in Pakistan. Her association with Kinnaird College Lahore where she nurtured theatre, drama and dance spans over half a century. The college produced many prominent theatre and drama practitioners including Yasmin Tahir, Madiha Gauhar, Shamim Hilaly, Naveed Shehzad, Muneeza Hashmi etc. As an acknowledgment of her services, Kinnaird College has named its amphitheatre after Perin Boga.
Dr Faridoon Sethna is one of the most respected and eminent gynecologists in Pakistan currently serving as Chair and Medical Director of Concept Fertility Centre. He’s served as Medical Superintendent of Lady Dufferin Hospital Lyari for a number of years. Among his many patients was former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.
Dr Mira Phailbus became the first woman in Pakistan to be be appointed as Ombudsman. She was given the charge of Punjab’s Ombudsman in March 2013. A prominent educationist, Dr Phailbus remained as Principal of Kinnaird College for several years. She also served as Minister for Education and Minority Affairs in Punjab Government.She’s on boards of several prominent educational institutions in the country.
Dr Alexander John Malik, is the longest-serving Bishop in the history of the Anglican Church of the Subcontinent. After serving for 32 years as Bishop of Lahore, he retired in Sept 2014. Dr Malik got his Master’s degree from McGill University, Canada, and his Doctorate of Divinity from Wheaton College, USA. While studying at the Islamic Research Center in McGill University, he worked on his PhD thesis based on the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). He is a strong advocate of interfaith harmony and has devoted his life to the cause.
Mani Sheriar Contractor was a prominent educationist who served at Karachi’s Mama Parsi School for over five decades. Her tenure at the school ranged from 1936-91. Her last 17 years were spent as Principal of the school. Her countless students spread all across the world remember her fondly for her total devotion to education, learning and character-building.
Louis John Pinto, better known to all as ‘Gumby’, is one of the most recognized, accomplished, and respected music artists in the Pakistani music industry. Gumby is perhaps the most recorded musician in the country, considering he sits in on recording sessions with a wide range of bands and artists evidenced in the fact that he has been recorded on at least seven different artists’ albums over the span of this past year. Bands such as Kaavish, Jal, Mekaal Hasan Band, Ali Azmat and Zeb & Haniya are just to name a few.
In addition, PK served in various senior policy-making positions. He was an adviser for agriculture in the cabinet of the Sindh Chief Minister Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi (with ministerial status) from 1975 to 1976. He also served as an adviser of Planning and Development in Syed Qaim Ali Shah’s administration of 1988-1990. He was particularly a shrewd analyst of indirect electoral elections, frequently using advanced concepts such as game theory and mathematical probability parameters to educate often ignorant political party satraps on the legal, constitutional, moral requirements of the electoral process. A human rights champion, he was also a published author of several books and a noted columnist.
Nazir (Bill) Latif was born into a highly educated Christian family. He grew up in Rawalpindi, where his father was a well-known professor of psychology and had done his doctorate at Princeton University. His father later taught at FC College in Lahore as a full professor. Bill had always wanted to be a fighter pilot and joined the Pakistan Air Force soon after the independence of Pakistan in 1947. He did 8th GD pilot’s course but because of his high standard in flying, was upgraded to the 7th GD (P) course and graduated in 1950. Nazir was sent to Great Britain where he attended and graduated from Royal Air Force College Cranwell in 1954. In 1958, he was promoted to Wing Commander as Air Marshal Asghar Khan assumed as Chief of Chief of Air Staff of the Pakistan Air Force.
In the advertising community Mr Punthakey was an exacting and demanding professional for whom excellence was a byword. He turned many of those who worked under him into the kind of professionals who were able to establish their own agencies. Scores of young people were trained under him. His major clients were Beecham Pharmaceuticals, Engro Fertilizer, Excide Batteries, KLM, the Boeing Company and Johnson & Johnson. Mr Punthakey was a great supporter of the arts and counted Gulgee, Zainul Abedin, Sadequain and the early Pakistani painter Mohammed Amin among his friends. He was a trustee of the Indus School of Art and Chairman of the H.J. Behrana Fire Temple. A crusader in the cause of democracy, Mr Punthakey was a staunch supporter of civilian rule and a life-long supporter of the Bhutto family and the Pakistan People’s Party.
he started off her career teaching at St Patrick’s High School, Karachi. She is also an outstanding sportswoman, an accomplished drama artiste, and musician/pianist. From 1966 to 2009, she worked first as a teacher and then as Headmistress (Kindergarten/Junior Section) of the Karachi Grammar School. In January 2006, Norma Fernandes moved to a new area of responsibility within the Karachi Grammar School, as Advisor, working with the Board, the Principal and the Internal Management Team and also giving confidential advice to parents. On 14 August 2013, the Government of Pakistan announced that it will honour Mrs. Fernandes on 23 March 2014 with the Tamgha-i-Imtiaz for her services to education.
In 2005, when St. Joseph’s College was returned to the Catholic Board of Education, Sr Emily was again appointed the principal.
On the 23 March 2009 the Government of Pakistan awarded Sr. Emily the Sitara-e-Imtiaz which she received from the Governor of Sindh. This was in recognition of her services to education.