Journalism Obituaries

Mr. Khalid Hasan: You promised to have BBQ with me

I dnow know why i was thinking of Him for past several weeks. Believe it or not i searched his number in my contacts list yesterday night but it was my lethargic attitude that devoid me of calling or emailing him; my friends know it is very unlike me; i reach to friends and mentors in time of clicking fingers.

Mr. Azhar Massod
broke this news that he passed away today of prostrate cancer in a Washington hospital and he was sad for losing a mentor. His cancer was treatable and doctors were hopeful and it was determined to carry out surgery to remove the cancer and doctors said that he would be able to recover and lead a restricted life of 3 to 4 years after the surgery. However Three days ago, Mr. Khalid Hasan caught pneumonia and his lungs collapsed, led him to death.

I had no opportunity to meet Mr. Khalid Hasan but i had long conversations with him on phone and exchange of emails. My friend Azhar Masood introduced me with Mr. Khlid Hasan while i was to visit Washington DC in 2008 to attend a course “Women and Entrepreneurship” under US International Visitors leadership Program. Besides He is a man of letters and an outstanding journalist of the old school he was a man of characters also.

I found few of his emails in my in box that i could not restrain myself from quoting those because my all perception about him is based on these emails and tele-phonic conversations. He was so quick on responding emails that he wrote me very first time saying:

Dear Rabab,

You are wearing more hats on your head than I can count. I had an exchange with Ms. Chibber and in fact she interviewed me once for her ejournal. Please phone me on my mobile when you arrive (703)981-2727. I look forward to meeting you.

Khalid Hasan

I learnt networking is very important in America on every level and acquaintances become strong references. I found Mr. Khalid Hasan adept at art of promoting people and building networks; when he introduced me to Engr. Khurram Dastagir Khan. On Eid i called him to wish and he disclosed that PML-N MNA from Gujranwala is visiting him. On Khurram’s return Mr. Khalid Hasan very kindly emailed Engr. Khurram Dastagir Khan to introduce me to him and he wrote:

Dear Khan Sahib,

You recall my mentioning a very bright young girl from Gujranwala who visited Washington some months ago on a State Department invitation. She lives in Gujranwala and you should be in touch with her as he is most enterprising and very Internet-savvy. Her name is Rubab Saleem and her email is rubab.saleem@gmail.com
Khalid Hasan

Sunday, May 25, 2008 11:12 AM

We could not see each other in Washington DC because of tough schedules on both sides but he promised to visit me at Gujranwala to eat Chirras and Tikkas (Special and famous BBQ from Gujranwala). On basis of his words i dared writing him

dear Khalid sahib!
I am sure we will see each other at my place also in Gujranwala; Pakistan. I am sure you would not refuse Khurram Dastgeer sahib’s CHIRA TIKKA Lunch/Dinner, you can have Sumptuous Tea at my place with home made cakes and other delicious recipes of samosa, dehi baray, jalaibi; you might have been missing or only recalling these as unhealthy and full of calories.( ha ha ha)

hoping to hear from you and Khurram sahib.. thank you once again
Best regards
Love from Pakistan

Rubab Saleem

He was so humble and down to earth that on being addressed as “Respected” and “celebrity” he asked me not to..

Dear Rubab,

Do please not use “respected” and “celebrity” when referring to this most humble person. There is no need to do that and I really mean it.
Khalid Hasan

Wed, Feb 6, 2008 at 10:13 AM

When people depart; leave us recalling sweet memories attached to them; we realize how important there presence and guidance would have been. The void their absence created can not be filled ever. May Allah higher his grades and give patience to the family of bereave bear the lose ameen

About the author

Rubab Saleem

Rubab Saleem is Editor of Pakistan Times

5 Comments

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  • I can understand the sentiments……i have felt the same twice in my life firstly when i lost the most important person in my life (Yr 2000).

    And secondly i can also remember a very dear old lady whom i called Dadima(Grandma).She was a neighbor of ours…she loved me so much that she used to offer me her last roti from her thali…..she used to ask me “Pappu….yeah kha le beta ….woh kha le raja……Chanda tere liye ladoo banai hoon……”….she was like my own grandma……when they were shifting i remembered i was crying bitterly…i was barely 15 years of age at that time….(she left our place in 1996)
    After shifting she used to call me and ask me to meet her….i meet her only twice….in the period of 12 years.I always thought….ki aaj jaunga …kal jaunga…..”..but the day never camed….and she passed away in 2008,March.Her name was Sampat Devi Shyamsukha…..her Daughter in law (whom i call Aunty) told me…your Dadima was missing you badly…..even a few days before she died …she called my name…..but by that time Aunty was not able to contact me..since she had lost my number..

    I was so selfish……that i have given preference to my job first…..not the love to that person.She is not my blood related person…but still she is my Dadima….I will never forget her…..also i will remain her culprit…her very selfish…kamina….Dulara Pota(Grandson
    )…..

  • RUBAB

    HE WAS ONE OF MY TRAINERS AND MENTORS.
    I LIVED WITH HIM AT VIEENA WHEN HE WAS CHIEF EDITOR OF OPECNA.
    HIS COLUMN IN PAKISTAN TIMES ‘OF THIS AND THAT’ WAS ALL TIME MOST FAVOURITE COLUMN.
    HIS BOOK ‘GIVE US OUR ONION’ COMPILATION OF HIS COLUMNS FROM THE MUSLIM WAS A GREAT BOOK.
    HIS OTHER BOOKS TOO HAD GREAT REFLECTION OF KHALID HASSAN’S HUMOR.
    I HAD PRIVATE MEETINGS.SOCIAL MEETINGS WITH HIM.
    PEOPLE LIKE MACQBUL SHERRIF,MUHAMMAD IDREES ,KHALID HASSAN,FAROOQ MAZHAR,H.K.BURKI,AHMAD HASSAN,M.A.MANSOORI,ZIAUL ISLAM ANSARI,KHAWAJA ASIF ,MAZHAR ALI KHAN WILL BE REMEMBERED ONLY BY THOSE WHO JOINED NOBEL PROFESSION OF JOURNALISM TO UPHOLD ITS NOBILITY.
    THESE NAMES HAVE NOT GONE WITH THE WIND THEY HAVE JUST WITHERED AWAY.
    NOW A DAYS FEWER PEOPLE KNOW WHAT KIND OF SACRIFICES THESE GREAT MEN RENDERED FOR FREEDOM OF PRESS.
    DOWN WITH LIFAF JOURNALISM…..
    ONLY BLACKMAILER ARE THRIVING

  • MY THOUGHTS ARE WELL REFLECTED BY RUBY
    DOWN WITH LIFAFA JOURNALISTS AND BLACKMAILERS.
    GREAT JOURNALISTS WERE THOSE IN PAKISTAN WHO HAD RESPECTABLE FAMILY BACKGROUND