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Irshad Ahmed Haqqani

Irshad Ahmed Haqqani (6 September 1928 – 24 January 2010) was a senior editor, veteran journalist and reputed column writer for the Jang Group of Newspapers. He also served as federal information minister in Malik Meraj Khalid’s caretaker government in 1996–97.
His series of columns have been published in many volumes in Urdu language. His famous column "Heraf Temana" has still great influence even after his death, upon people of Pakistan especially intellectuals and politicians of Pakistan. He often used to publish in his column, a letter of an eminent Politician on a national issue, and thus a national political debate was started by the letters of others politicians and intellectuals published in his columns. He often criticized the Martial Law Government of General Muhammad Zia Ul Haq and General Pervaiz Musharraf.
Early life
Haqqani was born on 6 September 1928 in Kasur. He started his career as a lecturer in the government college at Kasur, and retired as the principal of the same college. He also served, for several years, as professor of history at the Islamia College, Kasur. He joined Jamaat-i-Islami and served as editor of its organ Tasneem for some time. But he and a group of senior scholars and ideologues led by Maulana Amin Ahsan Islahi left the party after developing differences with the party’s founder Maulana Maududi over his policy of bringing about the Islamic revolution through the ballot. The differences erupted at the 1953 Machhi Goth meeting of the Jamaat.[1]


Haqqani worked with various newspapers during the course of his career and was associated with the Jang Group of Newspapers at the time of his death, where he became a senior editor of the national newspaper, Daily Jang. Besides his popular daily column titled ‘Harf-e-Tamanna’, he remained well acclaimed among different schools of thoughts including scholars, politicians and thinkers. As a senior editor of the Daily Jang, he gave new trends to column writing in Pakistan.[1]
Haqqani was also a patron of the Mir Khalil ur Rehman Society. He used to include criticism in his columns with the purpose of presenting solutions. Even ex-president Pervaiz Musharraf lauded his columns despite of the fact that he used to criticize the General.[2] Haqqani was an educationist-turned-columnist who influenced almost three generations. He imparted education and awareness amongst youngsters and old throughout his career. He made no compromises over the virtue and stood tall amongst his generation. He was a vocal supporter of the deprived and oppressed and he always raised voices for the cause of Palestine, Kashmir and Vietnam. He was actually the most impressive intellectual of this age but His canvas of knowledge was quite huge and he read a lot on all subjects.He urged researchers and students to preserve his journalistic contributions by doing research on his work.[3]

 Last days

Haqqani suffered from heart disease and died on 24 January 2010. His funeral was held at Lahore. He was buried at his ancestral graveyard in Daimul Hazoori, Kasur.[1]
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