‘In good spirits’ – from Dr. Asif Ali Hameedi, Chigaco

Hameedi1May 27:  It was so sad to learn of the demise of Sarwar. Although I met Sarwar on my last vist to Karachi last year at which time he was going through chemotherapy. Inspite of the grave diagnosis he was very calm and in good spirits. That was of course typical sarwar. He would not lose his nerves even in the most trying circumstance.

I met Sarwar when we got into Dow Medical College in 1948. He newly arrived from Allahabad with a All India Students Federation background and I from Aligarh with a Indian National Congress heritage from my father. Arriving in Karachi in the midst of the turmoil of 1947-1948, with the city of Karachi over flowing with people arriving from all over the Indian sub-continent was a catalyst to ponder, which I think made both of us to evaluate the values in our lives.

While we attended the Medical College in the day, in the evenings both of us and a few other friends would sit down in the garage of Dr. Waheeduddin’s house in Sehwani Colony where Sarwar lived at the time and discuss social and political turmoil brought on by the partition of India and the birth of Pakistan. To understand the happenings and the consequence to the people and the society, we would study everything from the French Revolution, Spanish Civil War, Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, the Rise and Fall of the German National Socialists (Nazis), the Mao Tse Tung triumph in the China’s long civil war and even the Quakers and the Fabians in England. It was indeed surprising that we still managed to keep our heads above water in the Medical College and get through all the exams on time.

Sarwar had a remarkable degee of courage. One day we were distributing a pamphlet in the Preedy street in Saddar when a CID man, later we learned was a guy named Hashmat, approached Sarwar and wanted to know his name and told him that he was a Police officer, Sarwar refused and told him point blank that if he was a Police officer then he should find that himself. We as teenagers at that time would normally be scared of a Police Officer and such but not Mohammad Sarwar.

Sarwar was a man with sound and very stable temperament. If any one had any bizarre ideas, he would promptly shoot it down. It always paid to check with him before floating any new ideas or schemes.

He had great compassion for his friends and foes alike. He would never stoop to low tactics in the student politics. He was a great Human Being.

I wish and hope that when his body is reduced to the elements and the molecules it was made of, these would some day recreate another Human Being with the same quality and configuration, so that the world would not miss a fine creation like Dr. Mohammad Sarwar.

With that wish I would again give my deepest sympathy and condolences to all the Family and the Friends for this great loss to all of us.

– Dr. Asif Ali Hameedi, Chicago
Message read out by Haris Gazdar at the PMA Reference on May 31, 2009

One Response

  1. […] DSF founding member, cardiologist Dr Asif Ali Hameedi passed away recently, aged 85 (see his remembrances of DSF and Dr Sarwar at:‘In good spirits’ – from Dr. Asif Ali Hameedi, Chigaco)  […]

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