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Community members pay rich tributes to renowned television host Tariq Aziz

Community members pay rich tributes
to renowned television host Tariq Aziz

Pakistani community members in Qatar have expressed deep sorrow over the demise of famous television game show host Tariq Aziz, who passed away in Lahore on June 17 at the age of 84.
Aziz started his professional career at Radio Pakistan in 1960. He was the first anchor of the state-run Pakistan Television. His hosting skills on the popular show ‘Neelam Ghar’ made him a household name in Pakistan and abroad. He was also a former parliamentarian and a respected poet. He was awarded with the prestigious ‘Pride of Performance Award’ by the government of Pakistan in 1992. He also worked in a number of films. He won the hearts of his fans in 2018 when he announced to donate his lifetime earnings to the government of Pakistan after his death.
Aziz visited Qatar in 1996 to deliver a lecture to community members at the invitation of Pakistan Muslim Welfare League, Qatar as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of Pakistan’s independence under the auspices of Pakistan Jubilee Celebrations Council.
Qatar Tribune spoke to a cross-section of community members who described Aziz as an artist par excellence. Excerpts.
Tahir Mahmood Chaudhary
Former Founding President of Pak Youth Society, Qatar and Former Founding President, Pakistan Muslim Welfare League, Qatar.
As the president of PMWL-Q, I invited him to Qatar as a keynote speaker on the occasion of Pakistan golden jubilee celebrations in 1997. During his three-day stay with us, we had very friendly discussions with him about Pakistan and politics. With vast general knowledge and artistic qualities, he was a great human being. He was always worried about the disadvantaged sections and their welfare. Tariq Aziz was the first face to appear on television in Pakistan, which ended only with his death. I remember his hands trembling when he held the microphone because of his young age. But the moment the cameras started rolling, the voice came out with its trademark grandeur. He can best be described as a legend, an institution, a trendsetter, an era in himself, a poet, the king of gameshow, a superstar, a larger than life personality with the kindest heart. He had also been a member of the National Assembly of Pakistan from 1997 to 1999. In my view, he was the first member of NA who came from the middle class and played a positive role in legislation for the welfare of the general public.
Anwar Ali Rana
Prominent community member
Another legend has left us. Tariq Aziz was a master of every art. We all grew up watching his show. He was the founder of TV game shows of his time. We forget our heroes very quickly but I am sure he will never be forgotten. I met him in 1992 at Moon Light School. He was a very humble person and possessed a charismatic personality. He guided me when I was young. The tips given by him have been a very valuable asset for me which I always apply while hosting any stage show. He was a university or institution in his own right. He was a poet, writer and compere par excellence. He also entered into politics and worked in radio and films.
Nabila Kaukab
Principal, Pak Shamaa School and College
On the eve of the golden jubilee celebrations of Pakistan, late Tariq Aziz honoured Pak Shamaa School and College. He accepted the invitation on a single call from our president, MA Shahid, and left the institute indebted to him forever for his kind visit. He also addressed the community gathering with his conventional but obviously inspirational way, and spoke on the subject titled ‘Pakistan and Pakistanism’. The programme scheduled for 40 minutes prolonged to two hours as people wanted him to speak more. Tariq Aziz was a renowned, unsurpassed and multi-talented personality of Pakistan. People who belong to showbiz, shine in the sky of glamour and earn the everlasting fame. But some stars leave deep imprints on the memories of their spectacles and fans. The unshaken fame has become the destiny of this dynamic personality due to his artistic and constructive services for the land with his undoubted patriotic spirit. He is considered the pioneer of anchoring in Pakistan when he successfully hosted the internationally famed TV programme ‘Neelam Ghar’, after a long struggle in the field of showbiz. This show brought him to the level where people considered him as a knowledge factory and this show hit the heights of fame and glory. Today’s mature generation is deeply inspired by the personality of this legend because they are brought up with his most informative programme Neelam Ghar. I do remember as a teenager at that time how it was the desire of everyone to be a part of that glorious show. For almost three decades, Thursdays were the most awaited days of the week for the people of every age group -- when his show used to be on air for an hour. He ruled the state television for decades. Besides his services for the national television, he also participated in politics to serve his people in a practical way. He was a legendary literary figure, a revolutionary debater, an inspirational poet, a dynamic host and above all, a true patriot. The nation will miss forever. His opening words in the show ‘Daikhti Ankhon, Suntay Kanoun, Apko Tariq Aziz ka slaam Pohnchay’, will echo in the minds of his fans forever.
Shahida Khan
Chairperson, Pakistan Women’s Forum Qatar
With the death of Tariq Aziz, an era of ethics, knowledge, sober conduct, culture and norms comes to an end. He was a legend who had groomed more than three generations of Pakistan. The knowledge we gained from his popular television programme Neelam Ghar is still fresh in our memories. The way he would announce any gift still echoes in my mind: “aur yeh water cooler aap ka hua”.