Exclusive interview of Javed Zaheer by Ayesha Arshad of Humanitarion Newspaper and Ummid International organization
SUCCESS STORIES OF IMMIGRANTS:
JAVED ZAHEER, VETERAN JOURNALIST
& HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST
Following is an exclusive interview of Javed Zaheer, Veteran Professional Journalist and Founder of SHIRIN (Serve Humanity In Reality International Network) conducted by Ayesha Arshad of The Ummid International organization and The Humanitarian magazine published from Mississauga, Ontario, Canada:
AYESHA ARSHAD: When did you arrive in Canada and what was your educational back ground?
JAVED ZAHEER: I migrated along with my family---wife and four kids---on April 13, 1999. I did Masters in International Relations from the University of Karachi in the 1980s.
AA: What was in your mind when you decided to migrate to Canada?
JZ: I liked and loved my country Pakistan very much but because of the worsening law and order situation, serious threat to lives and property and increasing corruption, I could not put the lives and future of my family in danger. So the decision was in the best interest of my family, particularly children.
AA: What was your inspiration that you moved from international relations to Journalism?
JZ: I was in the journalism profession since 1974 and did my master in international relations in the 1980s. Reading, writing and journalism were in my blood as I belonged to a literary family. Because of my keen interest in world affairs, humanity, reading, writing and research works, the subject of international relations suited me the most as it touches all my topics of interest.
AA: Please highlight your struggle of becoming journalist?
JZ: Since I was madly in love with reading and writing and committed to serve humanity in reality so I enjoyed every bit of the efforts and struggle in becoming a journalist including serious threats and dangers to my life. Every challenge made me stronger and increased my determination to move ahead and achieve my goals.
My father, who was a diplomat wanted me to become a doctor or lawyer and I was not interest in both. After the passing away of my father, I fulfilled his wish by becoming a medical journalist and helped some of my close friends win challenging legal issues. These were tremendous achievements for me.
AA: Did your health effect during your struggle?
JZ: Yes, a lot. I paid a heavy price but nothing stopped me. I became diabetic, heart, blood pressure, thyroid and kidney patient. My hearing and vision were badly affected. In 2003, quadruple bypass surgery was done which failed. In the end of March, 2015, I suffered two heart attacks which damaged my heart. Even angiogram could not be done and I was put on thrice a week dialysis. All these setbacks could not stop me from professional duties and from working for my cause, mission and vision---Serve Humanity In Reality---for which recently I founded SHIRIN (Serve Humanity In Reality International Network).
AA: Did your family support you in this struggle and what is the impact on your family?
JZ: My family did not like my craze for writing but never interfered in my work. The serious effects on my health and the looming dangers kept disturbed them a lot.
AA: Did you get any help from government agencies or NGOs in those days?
JZ: As a journalist, I did not get any help from the government or any NGOs. I am on disability (ODSP) since 2003 to-date.
AA: Are you satisfied with your successful journey?
JZ: Satisfaction is a very small word to describe my love and craze for reading, writing, professional and humanity works. Although I keep suffering a lot, still I enjoyed and am fully enjoying every moment and second of my journalism career and the struggle to serve humanity in reality. This is keeping me alive, healthy and hearty. I derive great satisfaction and happiness by helping others---humanity.
AA: How you look younger generations in their career struggle?
JZ: The younger generation is more materialistic than realistic. They lack many emotions and feelings, have become selfish and live and work like a robot for their vested interests only. This attitude must change. Instead of becoming human robots they must become good and normal human being, which is very important to make them understand, like and serve humanity in reality.
AA: Have you ever thought of going back to your homeland?
JZ: Like I said I like and love Pakistan and would always like to be there but now Canada is my permanent home although both Pakistan and Canada are my mothers.
AA: You have any plans to join politics?
JZ: No not at all. Although politics play an important role in our lives and we cannot remain aloof because of the system and democracy I take only limited interest in politics. I never liked, supported or promoted dirty politics and bad leadership at all levels.
AA: What is your message for the community?
JZ: Understand the divine messages of The Almighty and keep serving humanity in reality. The most important thing is to like, love and respect all good human beings and always try to live and work together with good intentions and full honesty. My professional career story is full of hardships, struggles and successes.
To know about my cause, mission, vision and journalism work, visit my blog: www.javedzaheernews.blogspot.ca.
My brief profile below tells the story of my contributions, achievements and successes in Pakistan and Canada. It is a source of inspiration and motivation for many. I keep playing my role positively to make the community, country and humanity really proud.
JZ’S PROFILE: Founder of SHIR International Network SHIRIN. SHIR stands for `Serve Humanity In Reality’, was declared by Judges as one of 75 Finalist Best Canadian Immigrants, an honor for the Pakistani Community. Joined Journalism Profession in 1974 (Daily `SUN’, Karachi) and still serving as a professional journalist. Was awarded Free Expression Award (Awarded by National Ethnic Press & Media Council of Canada—NEPMCC). The award was presented by Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario, Canada), Desi Idol Recognition Award Winner (Presented by North American Desi Idol), Member/Honorary Director of NEPMCC, Veteran Active Member (VAM) of Toronto Press Club, Ex-Member of The National Club and The Ontario Club, Honorary Editor of English Weekly `Pakistan Abroad’, Canada, ex-Chief Editor (Honorary) of English Weekly `The Ambassador’, Canada, ex-Chief Editor (Honorary) of English Weekly `DAWN', Canada, ex-Senior Sub-Editor of English Daily DAWN, Pakistan (From 1986-1999), Chairman, CANOPI, Director of Children Dignity Foundation (CDF---Canada & Pakistan) and Honorary Director, Canpak, Chamber of Commerce, and Honorary Director Information, Pak Seniors Forum (PSF), is contributing purely on Voluntary and Honorary Basis in order to serve all people and communities. Contact: (416)firstname.lastname@example.org To read more JZ’s exclusive articles, please visit: nepmcc website (Editorial Sections. Scan years from 2004). JZ'S motto, mission and vision is: Serve Humanity In Reality. This is the secret of my success.
Only recently I was appointed as Honorary Chairman and Senior Ambassador for the Thorncliffe/Flemingdon Senior Ambassador Program. The efforts and struggle to defend, support and promote truth and rights and successes are on-going and never ending because my pen is The Sword of The Lord and I am the Servant of God. It is only a matter of understanding for motivation and inspiration.