PM Imran declared “Man Of The Year”

ISLAMABAD: A Jordan based publication, The Muslim 500  has declared Prime Minister Imran Khan ‘Man of the Year’, while US Congresswoman Rashida Talib has been declared ‘Woman of the Year’  in the list of ‘500 most influential Muslims in 2020’ across the world.

The report is issued annually in cooperation with Prince Al-Waleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University in the United States.

Praising PM Imran Khan, the magazine wrote that if The Muslim 500 was in print back in 1992 Imran Khan would have been nominated as Muslim Man of the Year because of his brilliant performance in cricket, which concluded in Pakistan winning the 1992 Cricket World Cup — a sport I have always admired for its combination of elegance and intense competitive play.

The editor of the publication wrote, “I also was touched when Khan launched a successful fundraising campaign to establish a hospital devoted to both the care of victims of cancer as well as research”.

This was his magnificent response to the loss of his mother to cancer and given Khan’s extraordinary popularity with Pakistanis both at home as well as among a large number of Pakistani ex-pats along with his own, no doubt, generous personal contribution—he raised sufficient funds so that by 1994 the Shaukat Khanum Hospital opened its doors in Lahore. 75 percent of its patients receive free-care,” the editor added.

Khan became Prime Minister of Pakistan in 2018 after 22 years devoted to building an opposition political party committed to reform; confronting Pakistan’s civilian political establishment over the issue of embedded corruption and mismanagement.

This and his other accomplishments are detailed in the biography that accompanies his ranking (Number 16) in this, the latest edition of The Muslim 500.

But what is particularly to his credit is that upon taking office in August 2018 Imran made it quite clear that one of his top priorities was to work for a lasting peace with India. He wanted to normalize relations through trade, and settling the Kashmir dispute, “the foremost impediment” in the prime minister’s own words “to the normalization of relations between us”.

The editor of the publication further wrote, “This is Imran Khan’s great dilemma—how do you make a much desired lasting peace with a nation governed by those who have neither interest nor require making a lasting peace with Pakistan, and against whom any form of war would be hopeless”.

“With his impressive column in the New York Times and the sudden burst of public activity by some of Imran Khan’s touring ministers and ambassadors in America, Europe and perhaps in Asia, that appears to be now underway,” wrote the editor.

Woman of the year Rashida Tlaib, American Congresswoman (Democrat, Michigan) is this year’s Muslim 500 Woman of the Year.

She is the first Palestinian-American woman and joint first Muslim woman (along with Ilhan Omar (Democrat, Minnesota) to be elected to the American Congress as a member of the House of Representatives.

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