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Random thoughts

January 20, 2020

Great achievements

Opinion

January 20, 2020

The Pakistani nation can boast of some of the best liars, thieves and corrupt people. But look around carefully and you will also find some top-notch educationists, lawyers, scientists, doctors, etc too. (Prof Dr Abdus Salam, Prof Dr Raziuddin, Prof Dr M D Shami, S M Zafar, myself and many more). You will also find some giant entrepreneurs, industrialists, medical experts – not even to mention all those working in the social sector.

First and foremost a Bhopali, but also a Karachiite, I have spent many years coming and going to Karachi. During all those years I have come to know many businessmen and industrialists who started their businesses from scratch. I knew many of them when they were riding bicycles, then motorcycles, small cars, etc. Each of them persevered for excellence and became successful industrialists, traders, businessmen and manufacturers.

One of the highly commendable aspects of these people is that, since they started their efforts from scratch, they know the pains and problems of the poor and have, consequently, become great philanthropists. We often see this virtue missing in the younger generation. Whenever I get a request for financial help (daughters getting married, school/college/university fees required, etc.), I just forward it to one of these friends and they never disappoint me. Only the Almighty can reward them for their noble deeds, many of which no one else knows about.

In this connection I would like to tell you the success story of a very honest, hardworking gentleman, Prof. Dr Akhtar Sohail Chughtai. He obtained his medical degree from the famous King Edward Medical College, Lahore and went on to an MPhil in histopathology from another medical institute in Lahore. After some time he set up a world class medical diagnostic laboratory worth one billion rupees.

We in Pakistan have the tendency to look to the West to find success stories, but we should not forget to look in our own country, where there are also many. Dr Chughtai is one of them. He built something from scratch and is now an example of a highly successful Pakistani who is not looking for a job but is himself providing jobs to a large number of people – doctors and medical experts.

In 1972, the Bhutto government nationalised the industries. Many industrialists were left high and dry and only those survived who managed to have families support them, who tried to find other ways of survival and who had faith in the Almighty. Dr Chughtai, too, went through a very difficult period.

During his studies, with the loving support of his parents, he turned out to be an enthusiastic student. One of his teachers, Prof Dr Farooqui, introduced him to pathology with so much interest that he decided to specialize in that subject. After his MPhil, he set up a small laboratory in a two-room rental together with a partner. The partnership broke up and he lost everything except his love for pathology. To date, he has set up seven laboratories in various cities in Pakistan under 15189 certified supervision and 160 collection centres.

His laboratories are associated with the American Pathology External Quality Assurance Program and he has perfected a method and process for providing accurate test results. He runs a free public library and reading room under the Chughtai Foundation. He is also full of praise for his wife who supported him in all his endeavours. Without her support, he says, it would have been impossible to achieve his goals.

(This is exactly the same in my case. My wife left her parents and her country to come here with me. Without her support, I would not have been able to do all the necessary to make Pakistan a nuclear power. For this she paid a high price, at the hands of ungrateful beneficiaries).

Dr Chughtai’s mission is to bring together a team of highly trained, competent, dedicated pathologists. They have managed to test about 800 different types of blood samples so far. In the new academic year, they have started a Medical Laboratory Technologists course and FCPS training is also provided.

Postscript: The other day we saw PTI minister, Faisal Vawda, putting a boot on the table during a talk show. It seems to have become normal practice for PTI legislators to indulge in unacceptable acts. Some time back Mr Naeemul Haq slapped someone during a TV show. What kind of message do the PM’s stalwarts convey to the young generation by this kind of behaviour?

Email: [email protected]