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“This was a Man”
Dr. Shehzad Saleem

Now boast thee death; in thy
possession lies ... Muhammad Salahuddin

There are some people who make a complete mockery of death: they perish to prevail forever, die to live forever. Life makes them mortal; death immortal. They die as martyrs and with their martyrdom, the torch of truth shines even more brightly to light up the path of righteousness.

...Muhammad Salahuddin, undoubtedly, was one of them.

He was a fearless journalist and a dauntless writer who tread the path of truth with the majesty of the midday sun. He was a symbol of honour and integrity, and an embodiment of devotion and commitment. He wanted to see a united Pakistan, a prosperous Pakistan and fought against the menace of ethnicity till the last drop of his blood. His uncompromising and unyielding stance against all forces hostile to Islam and Pakistan wrote a golden chapter in the history of Urdu journalism. He was `rewarded' for his veracity and his office was wrecked and house burnt a couple of years ago. This, however, only increased his commitment to his profession.

Born in trying circumstances, he battled against the vicissitudes of life with tremendous courage and perseverance. He was possessed with the determination and will to fight the impossible. Working day and night he made his way through the hardships of life. It was his utmost desire to die the death of a martyr and must have beamed victoriously when a dozen bullets pierced his chest on that desolate December night. `Cowards', he knew, `die many times before their death; the valiant never taste of death but once'. His murderers, perhaps, did not know that death would elevate him to sublimity and glorify his mission.

It was a sheer coincidence that just three days before his demise, he had spent a whole day at the premises of our institute. The authority with which he spoke and the conviction with which he presented his views are still fresh in our memory. We can still hear his voice resounding in our ears and the fragrance of this immortal being still roams the corridors of "Al-Mawrid" and reminds us of the flower that was Salahuddin.


His life was gentle and the elements
So mix'd in him that nature might stand up
And say to all the world
`This was a man'

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