Pervaiz Malik was a gentleman in all senses of the word. Soft spoken, mild tempered and deliberate with his words. He was always present to listen and help his fellow man. He could see no difference between socio-economic groups and people. To him they were all worthy of his quiet attention. Pervaiz Malik was not surrounded by the pomp and fanfare one would perhaps not find unusual for a man of his stature.
Pervaiz Malik’s real grandeur and stature was truly realised by the hordes of people who gathered weeping to bid farewell and pray for him at his funeral held at Gaddafi Stadium. He had touched each of these people making a space in their hearts by his relationships with them.
1947 saw the cleaving of the subcontinent and one of the largest migratory human events of the modern world. It was amidst this chaos and upheaval that Justice Mohammad Akram’s home was blessed with the birth of a son one winter’s day in November 1947.
Pervaiz Malik grew up in Lahore at his family home on Justice Mohammad Akram Road in Muzang, Lahore. There were three brothers and three sisters. Pakistan’s journey commenced and evolved and Pervaiz Malik was present to witness all the trials and tribulations the country was challenged by. In particular growing up in Muzang gave Pervaiz Malik a unique insight into the ever changing challenges Lahore and its people faced as the nation evolved. It was there in Muzang that he first started connecting with people and helping them resolve their issues.
The family had simple values but placed merit on professionalism. Pervaiz Malik qualified as an engineer, Javed Akram as a doctor and Malik Muhammad Qayyum as a lawyer. Malik Muhammad Qayyum later became a judge and served as the Attorney General. Javed Akram is currently the Vice Chancellor UHS. Their sister Yasmeen Rehman served as an MNA with the Peoples Party.
Pervaiz Malik went on to marry Shaista Pervaiz. They enjoyed an enviable relationship. It was a true partnership in every sense. Shaista Pervaiz was to join Pervaiz Malik ln his political career and eventually became a recognized political figure herself. Shaista Pervaiz would become one of the leading voices for women In Punjab. The couple spent 46 marvelous years side by side working for their constituents.
Pervaiz Malik was elected as a Member of the National Assembly five times: 1997, 2002, 2008, 2013, and 2018. He also served as the Minister for Commerce.
The couple raised their three children, Ali, Ahmed and Saadia in Lahore. Eventually their family grew to include their daughters and son in laws and five grandchildren. Family was an integral part of who Malik Pervaiz was. He was always there for all his children, siblings, nephews and nieces and believed in dedicated family time.
Outside of politics Pervaiz Malik was fond of farming and every Sunday without fail would visit his farm to personally oversee matters. His friends and he would meet to enjoy gup shup every Friday. Lintots in Murree was a favourite family destination and lemon tarts were always preferred. The LABARD charity to rehabilitate the disabled of Lahore was fortunate to have Pervaiz Malik as one of its founding members. It was his lifelong work to ensure vocational trainings for those physically challenged.
Pervaiz Malik silently dedicated his life to his family and the people of Pakistan. Acknowledgment and accolades were not demanded or asked for and yet he was made the President of the Muslim League Nawaz Lahore. Despite his health being compromised the party was loath to replace him as he really was a man of the people.
To quote Rabia Ibtasar (niece):
“Helping others was the only way he knew how to live and help people he did. In the thousands everyday through all his work in public service.”
Pakistan was fortunate to have the dedication Pervaiz Malik showed to the nation and its people. There remains a void that will not be filled easily.