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Qatar tribune

Feroz Khan Afridi, a long-time Qatar resident who has written an autobiography in Pashto language titled Jund Safar Safar (Life is a continuous journey), received the 3rd Naway Zhwand Peace Award 2023, at a glittering event held at Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA), Islamabad.

The event was organised by Islamabad-based literary, cultural and welfare organisation Naway Zhwand where literary figures, artists, and painters from across the country were given awards in various categories.

Prof Dr Abaseen Yousafzai, eminent writer, critic, poet, social worker and Head of the Department of Pashto, Islamia College University, Peshawar, presided over the programme.

Sadiq Achakzai, a well-known political and social personality from Balochistan province who was invited as the special guest, couldn’t attend the event due to important commitments.

Prof Dr Abdullah Jan Abid, Chairman of Department of Pakistani Languages,Allama Iqbal Open University, Islamabad; Asif Ali Khan, famous Urdu, Pashto and Punjabi film actor; Godar Zazai, noted Afghan singer, poet and composer; and a delegation of Afghan journalists took part in the event.

In the second part of the programme, a musical concert was held in which artists from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Afghanistan regaled the audience.

Nasim Mandokhel thanked Muzaffar Ali Burki, Joint Secretary National Heritage and Culture Division; Muhammad Ayoub Jamali, DG PNCA; Inayatullah, Deputy Director PNCA; Khurshid Ahmed, Deputy Director PNCA; and Samiullah Baloch, Director PNCA for gracing the event.

“I’m honoured to receive the coveted peace award for writing my autobiography which was released in 2023,” remarked Afridi, who arrived in Qatar in 1984 in search of a better career.

“The 321-page autobiography contains more than 100,000 words. It is not the story of any famous person but the saga an of ordinary labourer. It narrates how an ordinary worker spends days and nights of his life away from his family while working abroad,” said Afridi, who is a well-established orator.

“In this story, the true and real incidents of all the vicissitudes of life have been recorded, which obviously may not be of interest to a common reader who might question what could be the purpose of reading the story of a worker but the autobiography will surely be a lesson for the poor people of our country who, like me, want to eradicate poverty and want to support their poor parents and siblings back home.

“There is also a lesson and motivation in the book for my relatives and friends as well, on how a labourer’s son goes on a worker’s visa and reaches the position of general manager and managing director by the dint of his hard work, and finally retires with dignity and grace.

“My autobiography will serve as a guideline for those Pakistanis who are aspiring to go abroad in search of a better future. It will explain that beside other challenges related to job search, they have to adjust with different cultures, languages, and nationalities,” remarked Afridi.

During his long stay in Qatar, Afridi remained socially active and founded a literary organisation titled Pak Pashto Adabi Tolna.

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