|علڻ فقير Alias ٽونئر فقير|
|Resting place||Buried at Jamshoro Housing Society Graveyard|
|Other names||Taunwer Fakir|
|Known for||Folk music|
|Awards||Pride of Performance Award by the President of Pakistan in 1980|
Allan Fakir or Allan Faqir (1932 – 4 July 2000) (Sindhi: علڻ فقيرُ), was a Sindhi folk singer from Sindh, Pakistan. He was particularly known for his ecstatic style of performance, marked with devotional rhetoric and Sufi dance-singing.
Personal life and death
Allan Fakeer belonged to the Manganhar community. According to Manganhar traditions, his father used to beat the drum and sing traditional songs at weddings and other festivities. Allan also sang at dargahs.
Attachment with mother
Allan’s mother left the world soon after his birth, and her untimely demise plunged him into a profound sense of solitude, prompting him to express his melancholy through sombre songs. While searching for motherly love, Allan Fakir departed from his home and arrived at the tomb of the Sufi saint Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai in Bhit Shah. There, he resided for an extended period, immersing himself in the art of singing.
Becoming a Fakir
Fakir is an Arabic word, and implies a Sufi or a mystic. Thus in the real sense of the word, a 'Fakir' is someone who leads an independent life marked by piety, abstinence from material needs, and contentment with the available resources. Allan himself chose the suffix 'Fakir' for his name.
Under the guidance of his father, Allan Fakir received mentorship. Despite lacking formal schooling, his remarkable memory enabled him to perform Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai's poetry at the shrine every night, adorned with a turban resembling a crown for the next twenty years of his life at the shrine. Encouraged by Faqir Zawar Qurban Ali Lanjwani and Moolchand Maharaj, Allan continued singing at the shrine, until his meeting with Abdul Karim Baloch who introduced him to Radio Pakistan and Pakistan Television Corporation in Hyderabad, Sindh. His voice reached almost 'every single house' in Pakistan which made him a 'performing legend'.
Death and burial
Allan Faqir died on 4 July 2000, at Liaqat National Hospital, in Karachi, after a paralysis attack. He is buried at the Jamshoro Housing Society Graveyard. He left behind his wife, 3 sons and 2 daughters.
- He sang a duet with pop singer Muhammad Ali Shehki, "Allah Allah Kar Bhayya, Humma Humma".
- A patriotic song "Itne bare jeewan saagar mein tu nein Pakistan diya, O' Allah, O' Allah" Sung by Allan Fakir, lyrics by Jamiluddin Aali, music by Niaz Ahmed - A Pakistan Television Corporation, Karachi production (1973)
Honors and awards
Allan Fakir received the following awards:
- President's Pride of Performance award in 1980
- Bukhari Award in 1984
- Shahbaz Award in 1987
- Shah Latif Award in 1992 
- Kandhkot Award in 1993 
- "Encyclopedia of Pakistan - Music - Folk Singers (scroll all the way down to FOLK SINGERS and then Allan Fakir)". Overseas Pakistanis Foundation website. Archived from the original on 20 November 2005. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
- "In memory of: Folk singer Allan Faqir remembered". The Express Tribune newspaper. 30 June 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
- "Allan Faqir: Obituary and Profile". Google.com website. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
- "Remembering Sindhi folk singer Allan Faqeer". The News International newspaper. 4 July 2016. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
- Abbas, Shemeem Burney (4 June 2010). The Female Voice in Sufi Ritual: Devotional Practices of Pakistan and India. University of Texas Press. p. 46. ISBN 978-0-292-78450-5.
- Channa, Aftab (4 May 2022). "Allan Fakir – King of Sufi-dance singing". Sindh News.
- "Folk singer Allan Faqir". Pakistan Observer. 3 July 2021.
- "Remembering Allan Faqir". PTV. Pakistan Television Corporation.
- OPF Almanac Allan Fakir's Profile at Overseas Pakistanis Foundation website (Archived)