Dear brother Mohammad Sarwar, Assalamo Alaikum,
I hope you are well. May Allah bless you, your family and all British citizens of Pakistani origin with good health, long life, prosperity and tranquility and protect you from all evil – Ameen.
1) Today I would like to inform you of a very important event in my life while working to make Pakistan a nuclear state. It was the later part of 1979. Together with some colleagues, I had flown to Cologne and then travelled by car to Bonn where the famous German company, Leybold-Heraeus (LH), had their headquarters. We were meeting with them to finalize a deal
for some very important equipment for our programme. They had put us up in Hotel Intercontinental. We knew the officers from LH extremely well and were on good terms with them. I spoke German fluently and my 15-year stay in Germany, Holland and Belgium was an invaluable asset. In the evening they took us to a restaurant famous for its steak – the Argentine Steak House. We chose appetizers and, for the first time in my life and upon
insistence from our host, I also took escargot (snails) fried in herbs. They were delicious. This was followed by tender steak, French beans, French fries and an excellent salad. For desert there were peaches in heavy syrup with cream and to top it all off, delicious coffee with cream. After dinner we walked back to the hotel. By the time we reached the hotel I had started feeling uneasy and my face, neck and chest was feeling itchy. I told our hosts that we would hold further discussions the next day and we then went to our rooms. Mr. Ikram-ul-Haq Khan, our Procurement Officer and Minister at the Embassy in Bonn and my colleague, Dr. Hashmi, came to my room with me. I asked them to sit down while I went into the bathroom to
look into the mirror. I saw that my face was red and swollen and then, in a split second, I lost consciousness and fell on the floor. Luckily I had left the bathroom door open. Ikram and Hashmi later told me what happened. “We heard a loud thud”, they said “and rushed into the bathroom, where we found you lying on the floor, unconscious. With a lot of difficulty we
managed to get you onto the bed and called the hotel doctor, who was there within two minutes. He gave you 13 big, intravenous injections and then waited, saying that it was a very severe allergy and that a few minutes delay would definitely have been fatal. Your respiratory system was affected and you had almost choked to death.” I got up at around 11 a.m. the next morning, feeling tired and exhausted. We were due to take a flight
to Zurich in the afternoon for a very important meeting. Everyone advised me to postpone the trip and rest instead, but I refused and we flew at 4 that afternoon, as planned. Our hosts, Mr. Tinner and Mr. Guntli were waiting for us. The drive to Haag, a beautiful small town where V.A.T. had their offices, took almost 90 minutes. V.A.T. was a high-precision company
producing the most sophisticated vacuum valves for nuclear technology. I took a risk, but it was in the greater national interest. My colleagues and I were willing to offer any sacrifice for the Project. Had I passed away that night, Pakistan would never – not even until doomsday – have become a nuclear power. Allah saved my life so that I might be able to accomplish
Here is another important event worth mentioning. We had ordered some useful equipment from England. When it was ready for shipment, the UK customs officers went to the company and advised them not to ship the equipment to Pakistan. The company in question had quite an investment in this order and expected a good profit on it. They contacted our man in
London and informed him of the problem. They were more than keen to send the equipment and recoup their money. When informed, I advised them to send the consignment by road to Luxembourg after which we would take care of it. We later had it flown on to Kuwait, then onward by road to Dubai and ultimately flown to Islamabad. It was only possible for me to take such quick decisions because I had full freedom of action from the government.
2) Brother Sarwar, the budget was presented in Parliament on Friday. It was more like a fish market than Parliament, with opposition members shouting themselves hoarse and an actual fist fight between Jialas and Matwalas. It is claimed that no new taxes have been levied, but many things became costlier immediately prior to the budget presentation. That, I am sure,
will continue until the end of the current fiscal year and the common man will be subjected to yet more untold miseries. It is no more than a fudging of figures. Rice prices in the government-owned Utility Stores have been raised, electricity charges have yet again been increased, etc, etc. Look (and wonder) at the luxurious life style of the rulers – a fleet of cars
worth millions of rupees, guards, imported designer suits, etc. Law and order is non-existent. The judiciary has lost all awe and respect. Nobody, even junior government officials, obeys court orders and they don’t appear when called on to do so. Our shameless Prime Minister struts around like a dunghill c***, even after becoming a convicted criminal. It seems like the
rulers, opposition, judiciary and the establishment are all hand-in-hand to let this rotten and corrupt system prosper and progress. The Supreme Court looks on impotently while the rulers openly ridicule its decisions. Judgments are most ambiguous, giving leverage to the rulers to flout them. Courts have lost all respect.
3) On Friday evening there was a fund raising function at the Marriott Hotel organized by the Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH), Rawalpindi. I had been invited as Chief Guest. It is an NGO, a public welfare organization run by eminent heart specialists and other medical
specialists, viz. Gen. Masoodur Rahman Kiani, Dr. Abdul Qayyum Awan, Gen. Arshad, Gen. Zaheer and many retired army and civil doctors. They have been treating poor heart patients for almost 20 years from a small facility in the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology. Now they are raising money to build a state-of-the-art facility of their own. Malik Riaz Hussain, the
construction tycoon of Bahria, has donated land in Bahria Town and will probably also help with the construction. None-the-less, large amounts are required for its completion and for the purchase of equipment. Ramzan is coming soon. I would like to request all British citizens of Pakistani origin to donate generously to this extremely important project for the
benefit of the ordinary people. It will enable thousands of lives of poor people to be saved. Please send your donations to: PANAH, account number 1622-5 and for zakat, sadqa, etc. to PANAH, account number 4951-0 at National Bank of Pakistan, Cantonment Board Building, Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Please do not let them down. Help this noble cause. Thank you.
With best regards,
Dr. A.Q. Khan