Renowned British journalist and author, Peter Oborne, gave a talk on Abdul Sattar Edhi (late) at the Pakistan High Commission London on 23 February 2017. The event was jointly organized by The Pakistan Society and the Pakistan High Commission London. The talk was based on his personal recollections and interactions with Edhi, whom he termed ‘a saint with enormous moral and spiritual authority’.
Sharing his recollections about Edhi, Peter Oborne said: “I have met presidents, prime ministers and reigning monarchs. But until meeting Abdul Sattar Edhi, I had never met a saint. Within moments of shaking hands, I knew I was in the presence of moral and spiritual greatness.”
Peter said Edhi’s life was legendary long before he died.
Speaking about Edhi Foundation, Peter said, it is located in an ordinary building where Edhi Sahib lived to the end of his days, in the austerity that was the hallmark of his life. The Foundation now owns and runs Pakistan’s largest ambulance service, as well as nursing homes, orphanages, clinics, maternity wards, morgues, homes for the elderly, and women’s shelters, along with rehabilitation centres. Since its inception, it has rescued more than 20,000 abandoned babies, rehabilitated some 50,000 orphans and has trained more than 40,000 nurses. Its guiding principle is based on Edhi’s determination to ignore considerations of creed, caste or sect.
A few clips, chiefly of Mr Edhi, from ‘These Birds Walk’, a film by Omar Mullik and Bassim Tariq, were also shown on the occasion.
Peter Oborne, the well-known journalist and commentator, is particularly interested in politics, Pakistan, and cricket. He has long been an admirer of Edhi and spearheaded a campaign for award of Nobel Prize for Edhi.