Khans Of Pakistan

Written By: Amna Tariq Maqbool

A man's feet must be planted in his country, but his eyes should survey the world. -George Santayana

This quotation clearly means that people of the country should strive for the betterment of the country and should also survey the world. This is what some great people in our country did and gave Pakistan world recognition.

Pakistan was born as a small country, which was not recognized by most people. But then came people who gave Pakistan recognition all over the world and created a positive image of Pakistan with their hard work, these are the Khans of Pakistan, the true heroes.


Imran Khan Niazi, a retired Pakistani Cricketer who played for the country for two decades in the late twentieth century and has been a politician since the mid-1990s. Currently, besides his political activism, Khan is also a charity worker and a cricket commentator.

He was born on 25th November, 1952. He became a fine fast bowler. At the age of sixteen, Imran made his debut for Lahore. When Imran was twenty-one, he went to Oxford University. For three years he studied economics and politics. In 1974 when Pakistan toured England, he was selected. He had not succeeded to make a big mark because all three of his tests were drawn.

On 16 May 1995, Khan married English socialite Jemima Goldsmith, a convert to Islam, in Paris.

In 1976 Imran returned to Pakistan and during the 1976-77 season, he got a place in the Pakistan cricket team. During this time, he had become the "father of the reverse swing”.
During the early 80's Imran was not only at his cricketing peak, but had quite a few relations during his time.

He became the captain of the Pakistan cricket team when Imran Khan was thirty. He led the team to a victory against England in their second test match. 1992 was the year of the World Cup Cricket competition, the most celebrated cricket event. It was with his captaincy he smacked the opponents and took the last wicket for his team and made history by winning the First and the sole World Cup for our country.

He then ended his career in cricket with an excellent score of 3807 runs and 362 wickets in only test matches.

By 1991, he got into social work and founded the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Trust, a charity organization, and was Pakistan’s first cancer hospital.

After cricket, Khan entered into politics of Pakistan. On 25 April 1996, Khan founded his own political party called the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) with a proposed slogan of "Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem." Khan supported General Pervez Musharraf's military coup in 1999, but denounced his presidency a few months before the 2002 general elections. On 6 May 2005, the former captain of Pakistan's cricket team spent months living under ground to avoid being caught by Pervez Musharraf, the then President of Pakistan during 2007 election campaign, in which Benazir Bhutto was killed. But now a surprise move by Khan is, he is making a return to frontline politics with an offer to break a deal between the Pakistani Taliban and his government.


A man who created musical history, and created a name for the country who is well known in not only Pakistan but his work is recognized all over the world.

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan who lived from October 13, 1948 to August 16, 1997, was a Pakistani musician, primarily a singer of Qawwali. He was featured in Time magazine's 2006 list of 'Asian Heroes'. Among other honorary titles bestowed upon him, Nusrat was called Shahenshah-e-Qawwali, meaning The Emperor of Qawwali.

He began by learning to play table alongside his father before progressing to learn Raag Vidya and Bol Bandish. His first performance was at a traditional graveside ceremony for his father, known as chehlum which took place forty days after his father's death.

Early in his career, Khan was signed up by Oriental Star Agencies [OSA] of Birmingham UK to their Star Cassette Label. Khan contributed songs to, and performed in, several Pakistani films. Shortly before his death, he recorded a song each for two Bollywood films. Khan contributed the song 'Gurus of Peace' to the album 'Vande Mataram', composed by A.R.Rehman and released to celebrate the 50th anniversary of India's independence.

Nusrat reached out to Western audiences through his collaborations with Canadian musician, releasing five albums of Nusrat's traditional Qawwali, together with some of his experimental work which included the albums Mustt Mustt and Star Rise.

Nusrat is responsible for the modern evolution of Qawwali. He was noted for introducing other forms of improvisation into the style. From his classical music training, he would interject much more complex alap improvisations, with more vibrato and note bending. He would also interject sargam improvisations.
On his death, WBAI-NY in New York aired only his music for 25 hours non-stop.
According to the
Guinness Book of World Record, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan holds the world record for the largest recorded output by a Qawwali artist, a total of 125 albums as of 2001.


As part of a great squash dynasty, where his family from the beginning was involved in Squash, Khan had the game in his genes.

Jahangir Khan was born 10 December 1963. He is a former World No. 1 professional Squash player from Pakistan, who is considered by many to be the greatest player in the history of the game.

Jahangir was coached initially by his father, Roshan Khan. In 1981, when he was 17, Jahangir became the youngest winner of the World Open, beating Australia's Geoff Hunt in the final match. In 1982, Jahangir astonished everyone by winning the International Squash Players Association Championship without losing a single point.

Jahangir played in North America’s hardball squash hand and played 13 top-level hardball tournaments during this period, winning 12 of them.

Between 1981 and 1986, he was unbeaten in competitive play for five years.

At the end of 1986 another Pakistani squash player, Jhansher Khan, came on the international scene to challenge Jahangir's power. Jahangir won their first few encounters in late-1986 and early-1987. Later, Jansher scored his first win over Jahangir in September 1987.

Jahangir retired as a player in 1993 after helping Pakistan win the World Team Championship in Karachi. The Government of Pakistan honored Jahangir with the awards of Pride of Performance and civil award of Hilal-e-Imtiaz for his achievements in squash. They also awarded him the title of Sportsman of the Millennium.


Pakistan's nuclear program is a source of extreme pride for the country, and, as its father, A.Q. Khan, who headed Pakistan's nuclear program for some 25 years, is considered a national hero.

Abdul Qadeer Khan, was born April 27, 1936, is a Pakistani nuclear scientist and metallurgical engineer, generally regarded as the founder of gas-centrifuge enrichment technology for Pakistan's nuclear program.

In 1975, following India's 1974 nuclear test, he was reported to have been asked by the prime minister to take charge of Pakistan’s uranium-enrichment program. In early 1976, Dr. Khan left the Netherlands with secret URENCO blueprints for uranium centrifuge.

A.Q. Khan initially worked under Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), headed by Munir Ahmad Khan, for a short period. But the pair fell out, and in July 1976, Bhutto gave A.Q. Khan autonomous control of the uranium enrichment project, reporting directly to the prime minister's office, which arrangement has continued since. A.Q. Khan founded the Engineering Research Laboratories (ERL) on 31 July 1976, with the exclusive task of indigenous development of Uranium Enrichment Plant. Within the next five years the target would be achieved. Thus, on May 28, 1998 Pakistan became a nuclear power which was created by Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan and is now able to face the challenges of the world.

Besides this, He also suggested that Pakistan should launch a satellite from its own space centers and satellite launch centers, and in March 2001, Khan announced that Pakistani scientists were in the process of building the country’s first Satellite Launch Vehicle and that the project had been assigned to SUPARCO.

During the 1990s, there were clues given from intelligence that AQ Khan was discussing the sale of nuclear technology to countries of concern. And so A.Q. Khan's official career came to an abrupt end in March 2001, when he was suddenly was forced out as director of the nuclear lab by order of President Pervez Musharraf.

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