yed Zulfiqar Arshad Gilani … My native village is Kotli Syedan on Chawinda-Zafarwal Road, District Sialkot but I came to this world at my maternal but historical town Chawinda on 25th August as eldest son of Syed Arshad Hussain Gilani and Syeda Surriya Tahira Gilani.
In 1965, the biggest tank war was fought at Chawinda between Pakistan and India after World War II so my childhood was spent in debris of these tanks. I joined class III at the age of 4. It is amazing but real fact that I never attended first two grades and it was only because of my very first teacher and grandfather Late Syed Hazoor Ali Shah who enabled me to do this.
My primary education was from Government Primary School & Tableegh ul Islam High School, Chawinda, Government Middle School, Phalaura and again from Government High School, Chawinda. In 9th class I migrated to Sukkur, Sindh where my late but wonderful father was working as an officer in Pakistan Railways.
I passed matriculation from Pakistan Railways Boys High School Sukkur and graduated from Government Islamia Post Graduate Science & Arts College, Sukkur as a topper and Gold Midlist as continue process of my primary education. After 10 years of graduation, I obtained my Masters Degree in Commerce from Karachi University.
Although I belong from border area of Punjab but Sukkur is my “Mother City” because I learnt writing, learning, speaking and all manners of living from its soil so I always consider myself “indebtedness of this city”. I was the youngest poet of my city and my colleagues gave me the title of “Little Akhtar Sheerani” due to my most romantic poetry but then I put it off due to some personal reasons.
I started my professional career from Sukkur during my studentship at the age of 13. Firstly I become regular writer in Daily Kaleem, Daily Yadgar and daily Maghrabi Pakistan and then joined these newspapers as reporter, News editor and Editor step by step.
My managerial career was also started from Sukkur and I served Mehran Biscuit Factory and Sukkur Beverages Ltd as Manager and Manager Administration respectively.
When Radio Pakistan, Khairpur started its broadcasting, I was honored as its first announcer and broadcaster.
I started fiction writing after moving to Karachi for a better future and contributed nearly 1000 long & short stories for different digests like Monthly Naey Ufaq, Naya Rukh, Action, Aanchal, Suspense, Jasoosi, Pakeeza, Dosheeza, Surguzisht, Ibn e Saffi Magazine, Weekly Akhbar e Jahan and Weekly Family and translated at least 750 English novels, wrote seven fictional series from 1984 to 2016. My most famous fictional characters were:
• Captain Raheela Adnan … Field Agent and Group Leader of Islamic Secret Service who adopts the cover name of Desert Fox. More than 25 stories of her adventures published in Monthly Naya Rukh, Action and Naey Ufaq Digests.
• Babar … A Mafia hit man becomes a Pakistani Intelligence agent. He published more than 20 adventures of Babar.
I also served as Group Editor of Naey Ufaq Group of Publications and looked after 5 digests of the group simultaneously for 5 years.
I permanently moved to Rawalpindi in 1998. My family is still there but my personal journey for bread and butter didn’t permit me to settle with them for a long period so my travelling of various cities continued for the sake of career and profession.
In print media, I served as News Editor, Daily Jang Karachi, Chief News Editor and Joint Editor, Daily Khabrain, Islamabad, Lahore & Karachi, Joint Editor, Daily Naya Akhbar, Peshawar, Islamabad & Karachi, Editor Coordination Daily Express, Islamabad and Managing Editor, Daily Hamdard, Islamabad, Lahore & Peshawar.
Apart from my editorial responsibilities, I interviewed notable figures from different walks of life. I wrote a weekly political diary for Daily Nawa-e-Waqt in the 1980s, political columns for Daily Qoumi Akhbar & Daily Juraat, Karachi and research articles for Daily Jang, Daily Express, Daily Khabrain & Daily Nawa-e-Waqt etc.
I then worked as Senior Executive Producer & Head of Content with ARY Digital Network, Karachi and Editor News for the launch team of Waqt Television, Lahore. I also worked as Senior Assignment Editor and Senior Producer at City42, Lahore and as Director News, Senior Assignment Editor and Bureau chief, Karachi with SAMAA TV. I was Group Manager Networks with Jehan Media, Designated Chief Operating Officer of proposed Jehan News Agency and Project Head of Aruj TV at Leo Communications.
I was regular script writer for Radio Pakistan, Khairpur & Karachi and scripted ARY Digital's Children's program Super Kids Funda from Jun 2006 to Feb 2007. I drafted promos, Ramadan broadcasts, concerts, magazine shows, and live transmissions such as 8 October (Earthquake day) and anniversary programs. I wrote more than 50 TV plays for different TV Channels as well as Private Production Houses and documentaries such as River Indus, Aashura e Muharram, Sindh Assembly Building, Khaddi, Victoria, Rangsaaz, Bargad, Bahishti, Chilman and many others for SAMAA TV.
I wrote the English website covering the history of Gilani Syeds, compiled the first-ever Urdu timeline, from Creation to Christ and produced the most significant work on Alexander the Great in Urdu with more than 3500 pages and 500 historical references.
My much noteworthy work as professional journalist is coverage of Kargil War at front line with collaboration of ISPR as a Team Member of CNN & Fox News in 1999 and coverage of Kashmir Earth Quake as a Team Member of Deutsche Welle [DW] Germany in 2005.
Apart from my actual profession I established Express Courier Service and worked as its Chief Executive for more than 3 years. Similarly I founded 5 star youth organization namely “Youth Gallery” with its cultural wing “La Opéra” and headed both for more than 8 years.
As a writer I have represented my country abroad also. I represented Pakistan at Festival of Literature held under SAARC Foundation of Writers and Literature (An apex body of SAARC) in Lucknow, India from 17th March to 20th March 2012. My research paper on “WATER” which was presented in this Festival has been translated in 12 Languages including Hindi, Tamil, Bengali and Nepalese etc.
Attended workshop on “Professional Journalism Training” held by Embassy of the United States of America in 2012.
Represented Pakistan at Sufi Conference held under SAARC Foundation of Writers and Literature (An apex body of SAARC) in Jaipur, India from October 10th to October 12th 2015. My research paper on “BABA BULLEH SHAH, THE PREACHER OF LOVE” which was presented in this conference has been translated in 21 languages.
Represented Pakistan at Norway Cultural Show held under European Union in Oslo, Norway from July 20th to July 28th 2007. My research paper “MY PAKISTAN, MY PRIDE” was translated in all languages of Scandinavian Countries.
I also represented Pakistan at Annual Reunion Day of Cyprus at Nicosia, Cyprus from March 2nd to 7th 2008. My research paper on “DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ISLAM AND CHRISTIANITY” was awarded Best Paper of the Conference.