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Random thoughts

December 16, 2019

Necessary trust

Opinion

December 16, 2019

A few days ago I was invited as chief guest at the annual function of the Haji Abdul Hakim Trust, where I distributed cash prizes to talented students. I had been invited by Dr Abdul Qayyum, chairman of the trust. He is a good friend of Gen R A Chowhan, former surgeon general of the Pakistan Army and former head of our KRL hospital.

I had cut short my visit to our own charity hospital in Lahore to attend the function. When I reached the hall, I was greeted by loud applause. The function started with recitation from the Holy Quran, followed by a naat. Some members of the trust then enlightened the audience about their work, followed by a detailed description of the history and working of the trust in various fields.

The members of the trust believe in human service in accordance with the divine edicts: “Who is there who will give a beautiful loan to the Almighty, which Allah will double unto his credit and multiply many times. It is Allah who gives want or plenty and to Him shall be your return” (2:245). “(They are true momins) who are steadfast in prayers, and spend out of what we have provided them” (2:3). “And be steadfast in prayer, practice regular charity and bow down your heads with those who bow down in worship” (2:43).

“Those who patiently persevere, seeking the countenance of the Almighty, establish regular prayers, spend out secretly or openly of the gifts We have bestowed for their sustenance, turn off evil with good, for such there is the final attainment of Jannah” (13:22). “So establish regular prayers, give regular charity and hold fast to Allah. He is your protector, the Best to protect and Best to help” (22:78).

There are numerous other divine edicts calling on Muslims to share their wealth with poor relatives, neighbours and others. Pakistanis are known as a very philanthropic nation, supporting welfare activities such as education, medical care, orphanages, helping the poor, etc.

The trust was established on October 8, 2005 after the devastating earthquake in the famous village of Ittefaq Nagar (Bhangian), to help the poor with medical care and education. With time, the trust extended its servicesto cover many other facilities and services as well, some of which are listed below.

Education: in 2018, the trust gave scholarships to 61 students who had shown talent and good performance. They distributed more than Rs12 lakhs and this year about Rs13 lakhs worth was distributed. A well-stocked library has been established in Bhangian and many parents and students benefit from it.

Health: the clinic at Bhangian provides free medical care to the local population throughout the year. Experienced, qualified doctors provide consultancy and medicines to about 15,000 patients. The trust spent about Rs17 lakhs in 2018 and about Rs20 lakhs in 2019 on this facility.

Ramzan packages: as soon as the previous Ramazanul Mubarak was about to start, the trust distributed 255 Ramazan packages in Balakot, 80 in Swat, 50 in Charsadda and 100 in Rawalpindi. About 500 families benefitted from this programme and received rations for the whole month. About Rs12 lakhs was spent on this programme.

Combined sacrifice: this year too there was a combined sacrifice of animals on Eidul Azha and the meat was distributed to poor families in Balakot, Charsadda and Swat. About Rs15 lakhs were spent on this programme.

Between 2005 and 2019, about Rs1 crore and Rs25 lakhs were spent on stipends and education, one crore rupees and Rs60 lakhs on health, Rs70 lakhs on ration packages in Ramazan and one crore rupees and Rs5 lakhs on sacrificial animals on Eidul Azha.

The Haji Abdul Hakim Trust is located in the Thalassaemia Building on Tipu Road, Rawalpindi. The building and facilities were established by Gen Faheem, Gen Chowhan, Dr A Qayyum Awan and myself about 30 years ago. Donations to the trust can be made through Meezan Bank, Chaudni Chowk Branch, Branch code 0803, A/c No 0100270602. Please give generously to assist the trust in its commendable welfare activities.

During and after the function, I was very happy to meet some old friends, especially Gen (r) Akbar Kamal, an eye specialist. He is a tall, smart, jolly, humorous person with an unlimited stock of jokes. As usual, many people wanted to take photographs and though standing for longer periods becomes difficult for me, I consider it a show of affection on their part and appreciation for my services to the country.

Note: I hope that real change takes place soon and that Mr Hanif Abbasi is tasked to commission the metrobus from Peshawar Mor to the airport and installing lights on the airport road. It is very dismal driving from the airport to Islamabad and vice versa in the dark.

Email: [email protected]

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