Senior journalist Salamat Ali passes away | Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Pakistan Press Foundation

Senior journalist Salamat Ali passes away

Pakistan Press Foundation

ISLAMABAD: Senior journalist Salamat Ali passed away at a local hospital in Islamabad on Wednesday. He was 84.Mr Ali served and headed a number of newspapers. He was jailed during the tenures of two dictators — Ayub Khan and Ziaul Haq — for writing in favour of democracy and basic human rights.After being released from jail he went to Hong Kong and later to India and started living in New Delhi.

Salamat Ali’s son-in-law, Agha Syed Asad Alam, while talking to Dawn, said after the end of Zia’s dictatorship and during Benazir Bhutto’s first tenure, he returned to Pakistan and started working for the Far Eastern Economic Review.“Later, he became Editor of The Muslim and continued working till his retirement in the 1990s,” he said.

He was born in pre-partition Ambala in 1934 and got his early education there. After Pakistan came into being, he joined Pakistan Air Force but in the late 50s, he took up journalism and became a reporter in Pakistan Times.

During his career, Salamat Ali established close professional relationships with the likes of late Z.A. Bokhari and Benazir Bhutto. Yet, in the best traditions of Pakistani journalism from yesteryears, he kept himself above reproach.

Replying to a question, Mr Alam said some time back Salamat Ali fell and fractured his left leg and was admitted to Fauji Foundation Hospital where he died. He was buried at the H-11 graveyard on Wednesday.

The deceased has left behind a widow, three daughters and a son to mourn his death.Mr Alam said Rasm-i-Qul of the deceased will be held at Masjid-i-Imam Sadiq, G-9/2, after Maghrib prayer on Thursday (today).

Meanwhile, former president Asif Ali Zardari has expressed profound grief and sorrow over the passing away of Salamat Ali.

In a condolence message, the former president said the deceased was an upright and fearless journalist who braved hardships and exile during dictatorship in the late 70s and early 80s but refused to compromise on upholding democratic principles.Meanwhile, the journalist community has expressed grief and sorrow over the demise of Salamat Ali.

In a condolence message, it prayed to Allah Almighty to rest the departed soul in eternal peace and give courage to the bereaved family to bear the loss with fortitude.