Patras Bokhari - an icon we hardly remember
He was sent to the United Nations as a permanent representative of Pakistan in 1950
LAHORE (Dunya News) - The 65th death anniversary of celebrated humorist, educationist, diplomat and writer Patras Bokhari is being observed today (Tuesday).
He was born on Oct 1, 1898 in Peshawar as Syed Ahmed Shah.
He got his early education from Peshawar's Mission High School before moving to historic Government College, Lahore (now university) for graduation.
He went to Cambridge for higher education and studied English literature there. He remained a professor of literature at the Government College, Lahore for many years before becoming its principal in 1946.
He also served as Controller General of All India Radio in 1940. He was given a prestigious award by the British government in 1945.
He was sent to the United Nations as a permanent representative of Pakistan in 1950.
Patras wrote remarkable essays which are still relevant even after six decades.
‘Marhoom Ki Yaad Mein’, ‘Kuttay’, Lahore ka Jughrafiya’ and ‘Cinema ka Ishq’ are some of his famous essays. These essays are part of curriculum in both India and Pakistan.
His collection of essays, ‘Patras Kay Mazameen’, published in 1927, is said to be an asset in Urdu humour.
Prof Patras Bokhari died on Dec 5, 1958 in New York due to a cardiac attack.
As a mark of honour, the Pakistan government awarded him Hilal-e-Imtiaz.
Patras Bokhari was given the titles of 'diplomats' diplomat' and 'Citizen of the world' because of his contributions as Pakistan's representative to the UN and cosmopolitan outlook. Although such eminent personages are paid homage every year, these efforts hardly go beyond lip service.
The best way to pay tribute to the likes of Patras is to inform the present generation (those who live in a world of wires and buttons) about his literary and diplomatic contributions, and his legacy as a first-generation Pakistani who won it acclaim.