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Abdul Sattar Edhi, a renowned Pakistani humanitarian, social worker and activist was born in Bantva, India. The legendary figure was a big treasure for Pakistan as his dedication to sacrifice for the humanity is unparalleled. He founded Edhi Foundation, one of the largest welfare organizations in Pakistan.The great services of the legendary figure for the deserving community of Pakistan made him popular as ‘Father Teresa’ of Pakistan.The fervour to sacrifice for the people especially the needy was instilled in him from his mother. When Edhi was a school going child, his mother use to give him two paisas daily of which 1 paisa was for his expenditure and the other to be donated. Later in life while he was still young, his mother got paralysed after experiencing a stroke. His struggles while caring for his mother during her illness drummed in a passion for rendering services for the old and sick.After the formation of Pakistan, Edhi at twenty years of age migrated to Karachi from India. He started his career as a wholesale dealer and then became a commission agent trading clothes.A few years later, he established a free dispensary for the needy people with support from his community people. A wide spread flu which had affected the masses of which treatment was left unnoticed made him take the initiative of forming a small medical setup where he made many medical students to volunteer and donate their services.Having a passion of social work made Edhi devote his remaining life for the poor and deserving people of the society. He possess the credit of alone transmuting the façade of welfare system in Pakistan. Started off with a very small setup and capital with the name Edhi Trust later evolved into as one of the largest welfare organizations of the nation.Edhi Foundation has more than 330 centres across Pakistan which are serving the abandoned infants, rehabilitating orphans, providing medical treatments to the people suffering from different ailments. The foundation operates one of the world’s largest ambulance services offering 24/7 emergency services. Other services of the organisation include rehab centres for the drug addicts and mentally unstable people.The organization alos has its grounds in foreign countries including Africa, Middle East, Europe and U.S where it facilitates relief operations.The renowned socialist and his wife Bilquis Edhi has won various recognition awards at international and national level due to their matchless welfare services for the Pakistani community.International honours include Ramon Magsaysay Award for public service in 1986, Paul Harris Fellow from Rotary International in 1993, Peace prize from USSR for the American earthquake escape services in 1998, Lenin Peace Prize in 1988, Hamdan Award in 2000, Peace and harmony award in 2001 by India, International Balzan Prize in 2000, honorary doctorate by IBA Karachi in 2006 and many more.A few national awards won were Silver Jubilee Shield by College of Physicians and Surgeons, Nishan-e-Imtiaz from GOP in 1989, Pakistan Civic Award from Pakistan Civic Society in 1992, Khidmat Award by Pakistan Academy of Medical Sciences and Bacha Khan Peace Award in 1991.Author: Muniba Mazar – Pakistan

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