Compassion and empathy

IA Rehman’ actions spoke of his compassion towards everybody

“A couple of years ago, I was among the trainers for a workshop on peace reporting for journalists. The trainees had come from Multan and were very enthusiastic about the whole thing. We had wanted to request IA Rehman Sahib to join the certification distribution ceremony and one of us shared this with the participants. None of us had talked to him yet and we did not know that he was unwell and had been prescribed rest. The trainees were very excited in anticipation of meeting him. Some said this was the best part of the programme. Our lead trainer, Mubasher Bukhari, told Rehman Sahib about it but seeing is condition did not press for him to join us. Rehman Sahib came nonetheless. He was in poor health but high spirits, stayed long and interacted with each of the participants, who were over the moon. He told them there were two reasons he could not refuse the invitation: first, they were guests in Lahore; and second, they had come from Multan, a city he had had a love affair with.”

“I heard this from a family member. When Rehman Sahib lived on Temple Road, an intelligence agency worker used to wait across the road. He had been deputed to follow Rehman Sahib wherever he went. One day, he came to his house and requested him to slightly delay his schedule for the next day. He explained that he had to take his wife to a doctor at the hour when Rehman Sahib was expected to leave. Rehman Sahib agreed and waited for him to take his wife to the doctor, drop her back home and return to his duty. He thanked Rehman Sahib and resumed the chase. In a few days after this encounter, they started travelling in the same car.”


The author is a staff reporter and can be reached at [email protected]

Compassion and empathy