Shoaib Sultan Khan

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Shoaib Sultan Khan (SSK)
Born 11 July 1933
Moradabad, India
Residence Pakistan, United Kingdom
Education Master of Arts in English, Bachelor of Law degree
Occupation Development practionner
Known for Social development, poverty reduction, participatory development
Notable work Founder of rural support programmes in Pakistan
Spouse(s) Mussarat Rahim (1950– Present)
Children Roohi, Afshan, Falaknaz, and Shelley
Parent(s) Mohammad Nasim Khan and Husna
Relatives Sultan Ahmad Beg (Grandfather)
Awards United Nations Environment Programme Global 500 Award; Sitara-i-Imtiaz; the Ramon Magsaysay Award; World Conservation Medal Sitara Eisaar and Hilal-i-Imtiaz

Shoaib Sultan Khan is one of the pioneers of rural development programmes in Pakistan.[1] As a CSP Officer, he worked with the Government of Pakistan for 25 years, later on he served Geneva-based Aga Khan Foundation for 12 years and UNICEF and UNDP for 14 years. Since his retirement, he has been involved with the Rural Support Programmes (RSPs) of Pakistan full-time, on voluntary basis.

He has received the United Nations Environment Programme Global 500 Award in 1989, the Sitara-i-Imtiaz in 1990, the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1992, the WWF Conservation Medal in 1994, "Man of the Year" Rotary International (Pakistan) Gold Medal in 2005, Sitara-e-Eisaar and Hilal-i-Imtiaz by the President of Pakistan in 2006. In 2009 he was elected as Senior Ashoka Fellow. He has written numerous research papers and books .[2]


Shoaib Sultan Khan was born on 11 July 1933 in Moradabad, a town in Uttar Pradesh, India.

At the time of Graduation from Lucknow University

He attended m the Universities of Lucknow, Cambridge, Oxford, Birmingham and Peshawar. receiving a Bachelor of Law degree from Peshawar University, and Master of Arts in English from Lucknow University .[3]


He started his career as a lecturer in 1953, but joined the Civil Service of Pakistan in 1955 and remained in it till 1978., eventually rising to the posts as Deputy Director of Civil Service Academy, Deputy Commissioner Kohat and Peshawar, Commissioner of Karachi Division: Secretary Department of Health, Education and Social Welfare, Government of North West Frontier Province and Director for the Pakistan Academy of Rural Development.

His career in rural development started in 1959 when he came in contact with Dr. Akhter Hameed Khan. Under his guidance he established the Daudzai Pilot Project of the Integrated Rural Development Programme in 1972 on the pattern of Comilla Project. In 1978, he was deputed to Nagoya, Japan, as a consultant to the United Nations Center for Regional Development. As the UNICEF consultant, he worked in Sri Lanka during 1979 and 1982 on the Mahaweli Ganga Development Project.

Non-government Programmes[edit]

In December 1982, the Aga Khan Foundation asked him to head the newly founded Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP), a citizen sector organisation that targets poverty-stricken villages primarily in northern Pakistan and engages their inhabitants in development programmes.

Dialogue with the community in the northern areas of Pakistan

At the behest of United Nations Development Programme, he undertook through South Asian Poverty Alleviation Programme (SAPAP), setting up demonstration pilots on the pattern of AKRSP in Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal and Sri lanka and replication of AKRSP in Pakistan. AKRSP is now a national programme in Pakistan. In South Asia, India has now launched a countrywide programme called National Rural Livelihood Mission based on SAPAP principles of development, to benefit over 300 million poor.


He is currently honorary chairman, board of directors of the Rural Support Programmes Network, National Rural Support Programme, Ghazi Brotha Development Organization, Sindh Rural Support Organization and Director of the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme, Institute of Rural Management, Sarhad Rural Support Programme, Punjab Rural Support Programme and Balochistan Rural Support Programme. He also served as the Director of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, Member of the Advisory Group of the World Bank sponsored Community Development Carbon Fund, Member of the Government of Pakistan Advisory Committee on Millennium Development Goals and Chairman of the Pakistan Government's Vision 2030 Group on Just Society.

Awards and honours[edit]

In recognition of his services, he has been awarded the United Nations Environment Programme Global 500 Award in 1989, Sitara-i-Imtiaz by the President of Pakistan in 1990, the Ramon Magsaysay Award by the President of Philippines in 1992 and the World Conservation Medal by the Duke of Edinburgh in 1994, the Rotary International (Pakistan) awarded Man of the Year 2005 Gold Medal in 2006, Sitara Eisaar for earthquake work and Hilal-i-Imtiaz on Pakistan Day in 2006 by the President of Pakistan. In 2009 he was elected as Senior Ashoka Fellow.



External links[edit]