Abdul Sattar Edhi (1 January 1928 – July 8, 2016), Nishan-e-Imtiaz Award (Order of Excellence) Award, was a prominent Pakistani philanthropist, social activist, ascetic and humanitarian. He is the founder and was the head of the Edhi Foundation in Pakistan.
Abdul Sattar Edhi has been running the Edhi Foundation in Pakistan for the better part of six decades. The foundation owns and operates a large ambulance service, free nursing homes, orphanages, clinics, women’s shelters, food kitchens, and rehabilitation centers for drug addicts and mentally ill individuals all across the country.
To his death Edhi remained a simple and humble man. He owned two pairs of clothes, never took a salary from his organisation and lived in a small two bedroom apartment over his clinic in Karachi. He was recommended for a Nobel Peace prize by the Prime Minister of Pakistan with more than 30,000 signing a petition by Ziauddin Yousafzai, the father of Malala Yousafzai for his nomination. On 25 June 2013 Edhi’s kidneys failed and it was announced that he will be on dialysis for the rest of his life, unless he finds a kidney donor. The Guardian called him ‘a legendary charity worker known for his asceticism. He was called the greatest living humanitarian in the world in a 2013 article in The Huffington Post.
Edhi passed away at the age of 92 in Karachi on 8 July 2016. “Abdul Sattar is dead,” his son and heir to his charitable empire Faisal told AFP.
“My father was suffering from severe kidney problems and both of his kidneys had failed,” he said.
His son announced that Edhi’s funeral prayers will be offered on Saturday after Zuhr prayers at Memon Masjid, after which he will be laid to rest at Edhi village.
“He wished to be buried in the same clothes he used to wear. He also wanted to donate his body parts, but only his cornea can be donated as rest of the organs were not in healthy condition,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Sindh government has announced to bury Edhi with national honour.