Zafar Ali Khan

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Zafar Ali Khan
Tomb of Zafar Ali Khan
Born 1873
Kot Mehrath, Sialkot District,[1] Punjab
Died 1956
Lahore, Punjab
Occupation Poet, journalist

Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956) (Urdu: ظفرؔ علی خان‎ – Ẓafar ʿAlī Xān), also known as Maulana Zafar Ali Khan was a writer, poet, translator and journalist[2] who played an important role in the Pakistan Movement against the British Raj.[3][4]

Early life[edit]

Zafar was born from a Janjua family at Kot Mehrath, a small village in Sialkot District, which at the time was part of British India. He received his early education in Mission High School, Wazirabad, Gujranwala District.,[5] matriculated from Patiala, and passed his intemediate from then Aligarh College. Next, he worked in the postal department of the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the same place where his father worked, but resigned over a row with his seniors.[6][7] He rejoined Aligarh College and gained his BA.[8]


After graduation, Khan was appointed secretary to Mohsin-ul-Mulk, then in Bombay. Then he worked for some time as a translator in Hyderabad, Deccan, rising to the post of Secretary, Home Department. He returned from Hyderabad and launched his daily Zamindar from Lahore which was founded by his father Maulvi Sirajuddin Ahmad.[7][9]

In 1930s he started writing against the Qadianis and waged a campaign against it in his daily Zamindar.[10]


Khan's interest in poetry began in his childhood. His poems have religious and political sentiment.[4] He was specially versed in impromptu compositions. His poetical output includes Baharistan, Nigaristan, and Chamanistan. His other works are Marka-e-Mazhab-o-Science, Ghalba-e-Rum, Sayr-e-Zulmet and an opera Jang-e-Roos-o-Japan.[11]


He died on 27 November 1956, in his hometown Karamabad, near Wazirabad, Punjab. His funeral prayer led by his companion Mohammad Abdul Ghafoor Hazarvi[12]

Memorials and Legacy[edit]

Sahiwal Stadium, а multi-purpose stadium іn Sahiwal, Punjab, was renamed as Zafar Ali Stadium in his honour. Іt іs used fоr football аnd Cricket games. The stadium holds 10,000 people.[13]

He served the Pakistan Movement and is acknowledged as the father of Urdu journalism.[3] It has been said of him: "he was the father of Urdu journalism, … The Zamindar newspaper, when Zafar Ali Khan was the proprietor and editor, was the Urdu paper for the Muslims."[10]

See also[edit]



  1. ^
  2. ^ Khan, Zafar Ali (19 November 2012). "Pakistani writers show renewed interest in Zafar Ali Khan's works". Dawn News. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan – the history maker". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  4. ^ a b Markus Daechsel (1 June 2002). Politics of Self-Expression. Routledge. pp. 64–. ISBN 978-1-134-38371-9. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  5. ^ Maulana Zafar Ali Khan [1873–1956]
  6. ^ "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan". Story of Pakistan. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956)". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  8. ^ Khan, Maulana Zafar Ali. "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956)". Journalism in Pakistan. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  9. ^ Ayesha Jalal (2000). Self and sovereignty: individual and community in South Asian Islam since 1850. Routledge. pp. 184–. ISBN 978-0-415-22077-4. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan and British rule over Muslims of India". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  11. ^ K. C. Kanda (1 January 2005). Masterpieces of patriotic Urdu poetry: text, translation, and transliteration. Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd. pp. 161–. ISBN 978-81-207-2893-6. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  12. ^ "Pakistani writers show renewed interest in Zafar Ali Khan's works | Newspaper". Dawn.Com. 19 November 2012. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  13. ^ "Sahiwal". Retrieved 3 June 2013.