By Zuhair Siddiqi , Viewpoint, June 11, 1976
This article was received too late for inclusion in our issue of June 6, which marked the fourteenth death anniversary of Mian Iftikharud-Din.
On April 18, 1959, a half-educated military dictator, advised and assisted by a clique of underlings, scribes of easy virtue, and elevated college passmen, seized the direction and control of the Progressive Papers —the publishers of The Pakistan Times, Imroze and Lail-o-Nahar. A little over three years later—on June 6, 1962—the man who had founded the institution and been its moving spirit for over a decade, died.
Two days earlier, Mian Iftikharud-Din and his political associates had been branded as enemies of the nation in a columnful of editorial gibberish on the front page of The Pakistan Times. When he died, somebody sarcastically remarked that that combination of political perversity and atrocious English had given the last blow to Mian Sahib’s ailing, lacerated heart.
It was the heyday of Ayub’s despotism, and the mourning for one of its chief victims was, understandably, a muted affair:
Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note—
A crowd of relatives, friends, admirers and old colleagues quietly laid him down in the family graveyard at Baghbanpura. Some dear and near ones cried quietly to themselves. Some newspapers carried perfunctory obituary notices, the most insipid ones being those of the newspapers that he had established and nurtured. Continue reading “Mian Iftekhar-ud-Din – A man of courage”