Celebrating Dr Sarwar, DSF, Lahore, Aug 8, 2009

Video clips from the event Celebrating Dr Sarwar, DSF, Aug 8, 2009, at the HRCP auditorium in Lahore, organised by medical doctor Dr Farrukh Gulzar, Ammar Ali Jan of the Labour Party Pakistan (LPP) and friends of Dr Sarwar, now uploaded to the web. Below, the respected journalist Minhaj Barna speaking at the occasion. Other speakers included Abid Hasan Minto, I.A. Rehman, Hameed Akhtar, Zaman Khan, Afzal Tauseef, and others. For all the clips in this series, see this playlist.

Pioneer of progressive student unionism remembered

Report in Daily Times, Aug 9, 2009

(Note: According to the published report, the event was about ‘Dr Hasan Sarwar’. They did later correct the error on the website. Some of the spellings are also incorrect and according to the reporter the ‘known progressives’ who spoke included Muneeza Hashmi, Dr Mubashir Hasan and Syeda Diep. For the record, they didn’t speak, but were certainly there throughout, which was a great source of moral support)

Copies of the booklet 'Celebrating Dr Sarwar' published by the Labour Party Pakistan on a table outside the hall. Photo: Daily Times

Copies of the booklet 'Celebrating Dr Sarwar' published by the Labour Party Pakistan on a table outside the hall. Photo: Daily Times

* Hameed Akhtar says succeeding generations acting as mere guardians of previous generation’s ideology

* IA Rehman says Dr Sarwar spent his life building country’s future

Staff Report

LAHORE: Famous student leaders of their time paid tribute to the pioneer of progressive student unionism in the country, late Dr Mohammed Sarwar at the Dorab Patel Auditorium of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) on Saturday.

Known progressive leaders and professionals like Minhaj Barna, Hameed Akhtar, IA Rehman, Hussain Naqi, Abid Manto, Dr Mubashar Hassan, Prof Afzal Tauseef, Moneeza Hashmi, Saleema Hashmi, Saeeda Diep, Zaman Khan, Dr Farrukh Gulzar and many others shared their experiences and friendship with the former student leader. Sarwar’s wife Zakia and his daughter Beena were also present.

The speakers said Sarwar pioneered the Democratic Students Federation (DSF) in the early 1950s in order to give the students a platform to make themselves heard. The DSF played a vital role in developing a progressive ideology in the country, and later became the base of a number of other student organisations like the National Students Federation. Barna said the DSF, labour unions and the society of progressive writers were three forces that rendered remarkable sacrifices to rid the society of imperialism and it was the duty of the next generation to honour their sacrifices and envision their dreams.

Mere guardians: Akhtar said people like Sarwar gave their lives to bring a change in society but the next generation acted as if was a mere guardian of those ideals (majawar). He said the struggle and ideology should be carried forward.

Building futures: Rehman said when Pakistan came into existence, the people of that time thought about freedom and prosperity. “The farmers thought that there would be an abundance of water for their fields and countless resources. But a boy from Allahabad travelled all the way to Karachi and became busy in thinking about building the future of the country. His name was Dr Sarwar and he dedicated his whole life to the purpose,” he said.

Naqi and Manto said Sarwar successfully led his students union against all odds and continued to do so despite facing torture, persecution and crackdown by governments.


Reference for student leader – press release

Press Release

for favour of publication

Lahore August 6: A Reference for the pioneering student leader Dr. Muhammad Sarwar will be held here at HRCP’s Dorab Patel Auditorium on Saturday August 8 at 5 p.m.

Dr. Muhammad Sarwar was amongst founding leaders of the Democratic Students Federation (DSF) and the All Pakistan Students Organisation (APSO). He was also instrumental in the formation of Inter-Collegiate Body of Karachi (ICB) which along with DSF spearheaded the students struggle for the acceptance of students charter of demands in 1953.

Twice elected to the office of General Secretary (national), Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) that continues to play a leading role in the affairs of medical profession, Dr. Muhammad Sarwar was amongst those who had formulated a people-friendly health policy. It was unfortunate that the policy, duly presented to the concerned quarters by the PMA, remains unimplemented.

Born at Allahabad, Dr. Sarwar came to Pakistan in 1948 and joined Dow Medical College,Karachi. After graduation he practiced for over forty (40) years at his clinic in the lower middle class locality, Golimar,

Coinciding with his Birthday, the Reference for Dr.Muhammmad Sarwar, will be addressed by Mr. Hameed Akhtar; Mr.I.A. Rehman;Mr. Abid Hasan Minto;Dr. Haroon Ahmad, Dr. M. Ilyas, Prof. Afzal Tauseef, Ms. Salima Hashmi; Dr.Izhar Chaudhry General Secretary PMA,Punjab, Mr.Farooq Tariq LPP leader,Mr.S.M. Naseem former editor “Students’ Herald”, Zaman Khan, Ammar Ali Jan, Dr. Farrukh Gulzar and Zakia Sarwar.

The Reference will be followed by tea. Later, participants may join discussion to be facilitated by Mr. S.M. Naseem, Beena Sarwar and Ali Cheema.

Issued on behalf of: Friends and Admirers of Dr. Muhammad Sarwar

By (Husain Naqi)


Dr Sarwar – Celebrating his life’ (poetic invite to Aug 8 event in Lahore)’

A poetic invitation for the Reference for Dr Sarwar on Aug 8th, 5-8 pm at HRCP in Lahore for Dr Sarwar, by Dr Farrukh Gulzar who took the intiative to organise this event.

Subject: Dr Sarwar – Celebrating his life
Date: Saturday, July 25, 2009

Dear All,
In a society burdened heavily with economic, social, political oppression
and hence resulting in countless personal tragedies,
which affect lives, and render the affectees
an inhuman and unkind attitude,
a medical doctor has a great responsibility on his/her shoulders
and conscience,
he/she provides physical and psychological relief to the ailing populace,
he becomes the vanguard and beacon of direction,
he  possess resources for a better tomorrow for all,
he delivers hope, our only refuge,
he has a forum to educate and conscientise people from all walks of life,
he is a scientifically oriented individual,
amongst a superstitious, ultra conservative, often antagonist lot,
yet he can harness and acclerate the process and thus transformation of a society,
he can expedite the evolution of society into a civilised commune
Dr Sarwar, 1930-2009,
was such an individual, was such a doctor,
a wonderful, politically oriented doctor,
he did miracles and spent his life,
like all of us aspire for sometimes,
listening to patients, understanding their needs
and miseries, empathising with them, he lived and died,
for every man and woman,
who had the fortune to meet him and learn from his grace,
he provided relief , care and cure to them, he is alive still,
he will always be.
‘Lets celebrate his humble yet intensely effective and contributive life,
let’s vow that we’ll try to be such healers,
and let’s congregate on his 80th birthday,
only a few days after he left us, with his memories and legacy,
Although he isn’t physically with us anymore,
he is immortal, because of his beliefs and deeds
Oh MyFriends!
from all walks of life,
Let`s meet on 8th August, 2009
at Dorab Patel Auditorium,
Aiwan-e-Jamhoor, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan,
107-Tipu Block, New Garden Town, Lahore,
5-8 pm
Let`s pay homage to him, his ideas, his works
Please do come
Thank you all
Dr Farrukh Gulzar
An admirer, a follower, a student, a doctor who believes in his way of practicing medicine

Reference for Dr Sarwar, Aug 8, 5.00 pm, HRCP Lahore

Final-Dr Sarwar reference-flyerFinal-Dr Sarwar reference-flyer

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