Yusuf Abdullah Haroon


A veteran Pakistani politician A veteran politician Yusuf Abdullah Haroon hailed from a distinguished family of Sindh. Eldest of three Haroon bothers he was one of the last and oldest Muslim Leaguers who worked closely with M A Jinnah. He saw the epic struggle for freedom from colonialism, the Pakistan movement under Jinnah's leadership, the birth of Pakistan, the holocaust of partition, Pakistan's struggle for survival during its formative years and the tragedies that later befell the world's largest Muslim state. The repeated military interventions, the suppression of the press, and the tragedy surrounding the secession of East Pakistan came as a personal blow to him, and he chose to live in exile, returning briefly only to be disappointed and hence returned abroad. Yusuf never compromised on democratic principles and on the freedom of the press and played a crucial role in saving Pakistan's leading English daily, 'Dawn', from what could have been a government takeover when Ayub Khan was the ruler. Yusuf fought the field marshal back with courage and strategy and managed to retain the Dawn's independence. He also served as mayor of Karachi before independence (1944-5), chief minister of Sindh (1949-50), governor of West Pakistan (1969) and a federal minister. He took editorial charge of the Dawn and in 1966 he became Editor-in-Chief. Yusuf inherited a passion for politics and service to the nation from his father, Sir Haji Abdullah Haroon, one of Jinnah's close associates, and spearheaded others of his family in founding the Dawn.

Compiler: M. Nauman Khan

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