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EDHI ABDUL SATTAR (1946

EDHI, ABDUL SATTAR (1946- ) Abdul Sattar Edhi is Pakistan’s best known social worker Born in India, Edhi migrated to Pakistan shortly after the birth of the country He started modestly, establishing a small dispensary in 1971 in Mithadar, a poor neighborhood in Karachi, to honor the memory of his mother Single-handedly-or more accurately, with the help of his wife, Bilquise-he turned this one small dispensary into a social-welfare organization that now operates 400 Edhi centers throughout Pakistan The Edhi Foundation is responsible for running the centers It employs more than 1,000 people and owns a fleet of 500 ambulances The Foundation is funded entirely by donations, received mostly from the poor and middle classes The emergency care provided by the Foundation is often all that is available to the poorly served people of Pakistan Edhi’s work in a society in which the government had become dysfunctional was bound to attract a great deal of attention It appears that an attempt was made in 1995 to recruit him as a member of a political movement that aimed to introduce a new political order in the country



Edhi refused to get involved, and when those who wanted him to lend his name and prestige to their movement persisted in their efforts, he panicked and fled the country He stayed in London for a few weeks but returned to Karachi to resume his work By opening a center in Canada in 1997, he extended his social work to the communities of Pakistani expatriates in North America

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