Perhaps, I met Mr. Ijaz Ahmed Khan once or twice in my life. It was enough to change my life…
It was a freezing cold rainy day, when I drove over in my Alto, to his office with my daughter Waliya.
I had left, my husband admitted in CMH, in the competent hands of Nadiya who had just arrived from England. We had gone to Mr. Ijaz’s office to discuss our situation. To our surprise, we found out that my eldest brother-in-law had already tried to get our in-complete house on his name. It felt as if the roof over my head and the ground under my feet was slipping away. A husband suffering the last stages of cancer, and here I was left to fend for myself and my children in the worst of circumstances.
There were several other angels in my life too, who worked day and night to help me. But primarily, it was Ijaz Khan who made sure no one could touch the roof over our heads.
It came to my mind, what a maid once said to me in Karachi, in 1989:
‘Had it not been for the bad people in this world, how would we know the good people?’
That is exactly, how I met Ijaz Ahmed Khan.
Due to the bad people;
Ijaz Ahmed Khan didn’t know us personally. However, he didn’t give them any importance. So they prepared a ‘case’ complete with notes from Tehsildar of their area. They threatened him with cases against him and the organization. Ijaz Khan remained unshaken. I was busy in hospital desperately trying to stay in control of the situation.
Four of my husbands’ siblings succeeded in getting the banks closed in my husband’s lifetime. They also got hold of life insurance and education insurance portions.
It is interesting, how, my in-laws got the bank frozen at a time, when my husband was ill needing treatment. (How and why would a client want to close a bank at such a time?) The bank manager Marium didn’t care.
Sadly, there aren’t enough Ijaz Khans in most offices to ‘know’ that something is wrong, nor to have the guts to support the aggrieved family!
Only Ijaz Ahmed Khan stood by us. He, alone supported my girls and myself. (Those same siblings hid the inherited belongings of my husband from his family, along with those lands which my father-in-law had personally put in our names.)
After my husband’s death in January 2012, I was deep in struggles, and didn’t get a chance to meet Mr. Ijaz Khan to thank him properly. When finally I did go, in 2016, I found out that he had passed away, a few months back.
I was very disturbed and went to meet his family. His wife, Roohi told me that when my case had come to his office, he was very upset. He said I’ll support this family being bullied at such a time in their lives. ‘I don’t care what happens.’
‘What if you lose your job?’ Roohi had asked.
‘I don’t care if I lose my job. I cannot sit by and watch such things happening!’ He had answered.
While other companies including EFU, Banks, holding my husband’s assets were totally confused, this organization (MPCHS) was clear. It was clear due to its worthy president, Ijaz Ahmed Khan.
Sure enough the litigations went ahead, the defense carried on for four-and-a-half years. Finally, I had to agree to give my in-laws 1135 Kanals of agricultural lands, in our names (which was totally un-Islamic, but condoned by all and sundry here.)
When I had gone to the office of the MPCHS President, Ijaz Ahmed Khan, he had picked up the phone and asked Arsalan, the man in-charge of of security near my house, to take special care. To this day, they give me special attention. So, at a time, when my own so-called flesh and blood were striving against me, total strangers were like angels setting my world right-side-up!
This is how Allah helps.
After he passed away, Ijaz Ahmed Khan’s wife told me that many people had come for condolences, telling her of the ways in which he had gone out of his way to help them.
In fact, I remember, once as I sat in his office, I had mentioned that I’m trying to educate my staff, but it is difficult to find the time daily to teach them. He suggested keeping a tutor to teach one’s staff. He said, ‘this is what I do.’ To this day, their staff is taught by a tutor.
A man of character and commitment is a man from whom you learn how to live. Within those brief moments that I was in his office, I learnt a lot. I wonder how many other homes are blessed due to the fact that their lives were touched by a man like Ijaz Ahmed Khan?
May Allah bless his soul, and may his family be blessed, as he blessed other people’s families.
Ijaz Khan’s son, Salman told me how his father had given up his career in the army, due to his mother being alone. He joined IBA – the most prestigious educational institution in Karachi – and came out of it, as a gold medalist. He spent most of his life in Lahore and Islamabad. He retired as Deputy Managing Director Overseas Employment Corporation.
Around 1999, while still in service, he had starting helping out his friends in Police Foundation Islamabad, and MPCHS. After retirement, he took over and revived MPCHS (Multi Professional Cooperative Housing Scheme.) He worked diligently in its colonies in E-11/1, E-11/3 and B-17. He was the one who got them out of the initial struggles of embezzlement of resources, with court cases and hardly any funds, due to people absconding with the money. He was the one to make MPCHS one of the most well managed living areas of Islamabad. So, he worked for MPCHS till 2016 when he passed away, while being the President of MPCHS.
Gen. Saeed uz Zafar, who was his course-mate as a cadet in PMA, has very fond words for him, saying ‘though he had left the army before passing out, he remained in touch with his course-mates. He would always attend the parties and gatherings of old friends. He was greatly respected for his honesty, and integrity.’
He passed away quite suddenly, on 8th January 2016. Salman mentions that very often when he goes with his family to his fathers’grave, they find fresh flowers there, which might have been placed by someone. It would be natural to visit the grave of the one who has made a difference in one’s life. When I spoke to Mrs. Roohi Ijaz, she mentioned how tough it is to live without such a man, and how much she misses him.
Check back tomorrow to see part two of this post and to see how Ijaz Ahmed Khan inspired our trees plantation project.
Stay blessed, and keep blessing others. 🙂
Dear Shireen,i adore you always and reading this blog made me cry and i adore you more.I always comment on you blogs.I do like the spirit behind your writings.I already have your book.I only commented because i feel i should appreciate your courage to speak up and keep struggling for what you believe in according to Allah’s Will.A lot of prayers!May Allah bless you always,Aameen!
Thank you ever so much for your comment. You really make the effort of writing worthwhile for me, with your remarks and input. Stay blessed with your lovely poetry and paintings. I feel so wonderful for having met you that lovely day in Islamabad Club.
Stay blessed, and keep smiling. 🙂
Shireen you are any inspiration to so many of us. Looking forward for the next episode. May Allah bless you always.
Dear Kiran, love your comments. Thank you so much for your support. Love and hugs. Stay blessed and smiling always. 🙂
[…] blog post is almost a continuation of my last blog post Ijaz Ahmed Khan – comparing a good word with a good tree.. Thinking it would be too long for you all, I decided to break them up into two. So, here it is, I […]
Thank you for writing this. His absence is greatly felt by all of us. I feel very blessed to have had him as a role model.
Thank you Momin for your comment. It was a very difficult blog post for me to write. I felt so small to be talking about such a great human being. It feels good to know you liked it. Stay blessed.
Hello Shireen – IAK was a one man institution who held righteousness and fairness as life principle. Your appreciation manifests the impact he made to preserve your family life. Sometimes one just needs an experience to know the good in others and not a life time to realise it. Thank you for sharing your story and putting in kind words for my late father, God bless you for that.
Thank you for your kind words. No doubt your father was a great human being. I was priviledgwd to have met him. May Allah accept his great deeds and grant him highest place in Jannat ul Firdause. Ameen. Stay blessed.