KARACHI: The funeral prayers of renowned social worker Abdul Sattar Edhi offered at Karachi’s National Stadium attended by thousands of mourners including the top politicians and officers of the armed forces.
Large number of people reached Karachi’s National Stadium to attend the funeral prayers of renowned philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi, who passed away at the age of 88 on Friday evening.
Edhi will be laid to rest at Edhi Village, Super Highway.
Earlier, the coffin was taken from his Meethadar residence to the National Stadium for the funeral prayers. As the remains were being taken from his house, people showered rose petals over his coffin to express their gratitude to the great man for his services.
Stringent security measures were taken to ensure security of the people who have arrived at National Stadium to attend the last rites of the renowned social worker.
Chiefs of all three armed forces had reached National Stadium for the funeral prayers.
A military guard of honour and gun salute was presented at the funeral.
Maulana Ahmad Khan Niazi led the funeral prayers of Abdul Sattar Edhi.
President Mamnoon Hussain, Chairman Senate Raza Rabbani, Governor Sindh Dr. Ishratul Ebad, Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah, CM Punjab Shahbaz Sharif, Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader Farooq Sattar and leaders of different political parties are present at the funeral prayers.
Earlier, provincial governments of Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa announced three-day mourning over the demise of the renowned philanthropist.
Parking spots have been set up at Expo Centre, China Ground and Sports Complex for the people who will attend the funeral of late Abdul Sattar Edhi.
According to Faisal Edhi, the social worker had prepared his will wherein he wished to donate his body organs post his death to the needy. His eyes have been donated, while other organs could not be given away due to his poor health.
Social media quickly lit up in honour of the man whose work uplifting the nation’s destitute and orphans cemented his place in the hearts of our nation.
On Friday, Edhi was shifted to the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation (SIUT) after he developed respiratory problems. He was then moved to Intensive Care Unit of the hospital. The SIUT officials had later confirmed that Abdul Sattar Edhi has been placed on ventilator.
Well-known surgeon Adeebul Hasan Rizvi was heading the team of doctors treating Abdul Sattar Edhi. The doctors had already declared that next 6-8 hours were very crucial for his life.
Frail and weak in his later years, Edhi appointed his son Faisal as managing trustee of his charity in early 2016.
Motivated by a spiritual quest for justice, over the years Edhi and his team created maternity wards, morgues, orphanages, shelters, and homes for the elderly — all aimed at helping those in society who cannot help themselves and picking up where limited government-run services fell short.
PM, Army Chief mourn demise of Edhi
Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif said Pakistan has lost one of its most respected figures. The whole world is mourning his demise, he said in a statement issued by ISPR.
He prayed to the almighty Allah to rest the departed soul in eternal peace and grant patience to his family to bear this irreparable loss.
He said Edhi was the figure who had unflinching sympathy for humanity.
In a separate statement, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has offered condolences on the death of Abdul Sattar Edhi. He said the space left after the demise of Mr. Edhi can’t be filled.
Day of mourning
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced one-day mourning countrywide and declared Edhi’s demise as national tragedy. He also announced to award Nishan-e-Imtiaz to the revered Pakistani figure.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah has declared 3-day mourning on death of Abdul Sattar Edhi. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has also announced 3-day mourning on the demise of renowned social worker.
Edhi has been nominated several times for the Nobel Peace Prize, and appeared on the list again this year.
Edhi, born to a family of Muslim traders in Gujarat in British India, arrived in Pakistan after its creation in 1947.
“He thought that this new Muslim nation would be a social welfare state,” his son Faisal said in a recent interview.
But, when they got to Pakistan, he found “it was the exact opposite”.
The state’s failure to help his struggling family care for his mother — paralysed and suffering from mental health issues — was his painful and decisive turning point towards philanthropy.
In the sticky streets in the heart of Karachi, Edhi, full of idealism and hope, opened his first clinic in 1951.
“Social welfare was my vocation, I had to free it,” he says in his autobiography, “A Mirror To The Blind”.
Motivated by a spiritual quest for justice, over the years Edhi and his team have created maternity wards, morgues, orphanages, shelters, and homes for the elderly — all aimed at helping those in society who cannot help themselves.
Edhi‘s response has been hard work and an obstinate asceticism, a bid to leave his enemies with no ammunition.
Abdul Sattar Edhi in his lifelong service of mankind received several prestigious awards.
Edhi received the 1986 Ramon Magsaysay Award for Public Service. He was also the recipient of the Lenin Peace Prize and the Balzan Prize. In 2006, Institute of Business Administration Pakistan conferred an honoris causa degree of Doctor of Social Service Management for his services. In September 2010, Edhi was also awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Bedfordshire. In 1989, Edhi received the Nishan-e-Imtiaz from the Government of Pakistan.
The annual budget of 1.5 billion rupees ($15 million), mainly from donations by middle- and working-class Pakistanis, continues to grow, according to Faisal.