Sweet, Sour & Bitter- A Life Well Lived: Autobiography of ‘Always First’ Woman Launched
Prof. Shahida Kazi was the first female student and later chairperson of mass communication department of Karachi University, first print media reporter and PTV’s news editor
After retirement from KU, Prof. Shahida Kazi also headed the Mass Communication Department of Jinnah University of Women and the Media Studies Institute of Business Management
Sindh Courier Staff Report
‘Sweet, Sour & Bitter- A Life Well Lived’, is an autobiographical book of an ‘Always First’ woman, Prof. Shahida Kazi, launched on Friday February 10, 2023 at Karachi Press Club.
Prof. Shahida Kazi, a prominent journalist of her era, who is teacher and mentor of a large number of students, was the first female student and later chairperson of mass communication department of Karachi University, first print media reporter and PTV’s news editor. After retirement from KU, Prof. Shahida Kazi also headed the Mass Communication Department of Jinnah University of Women and the Media Studies Institute of Business Management.
The book encompasses not only her life story but the social and political history of Pakistan. She also has shared the upheavals of her personal life in the ‘very slim book’ of only 107 pages, as described by one of the speakers at the launching ceremony. And, the author justified her summarized life story saying, “The people now-a-days do not like to read voluminous books”.
Born in Karachi to a distinguished Kazi family, originally hailing from a small village Paat Sharif in Dadu district of Sindh, chose a different path by studying and joining the world of journalism in big contrast to her family who had always produced the judges and bureaucrats.
Addressing the ceremony, Prof. Shahida Kazi spoke of her childhood, school and college days and the life at university. “My father, who was not a bureaucrat but a businessman, wanted me to appear in CSS Exam and join the civil service becoming the first female of the family to do so. But the only fields open to females in civil service were finance, audit, accounts and customs, which I had neither interest nor aptitude, and greatly disappointed my father.”
“I was to study further and join Karachi University for masters and subject of my choice was the English Literature, being favorite one, however just by chance I heard that a department of journalism had been opened at the university. This was the game changer, and I lost no time to apply for admission.”
“There were only few girls in journalism department but all of them left within days except me, thus becoming the first female to study journalism, and fortunately became first position holder in the final examination,” she said.
Prof. Shahis Kazi also shared how she was offered to join the Daily Dawn and work as Staff Reporter, being the first female reporter in the print media, and then joining the Pakistan Television as News Producer and later as News Editor, also being the first female. “I spent twenty years there when I was persuaded to join Mass Communication Department of Karachi University.”
“Every person’s life is a novel, as I always say. A novel of which no one knows the ending. Can a child, with bright dreams of the future even guess how his life is going to turn out? Will it become a comedy or tragedy, how much romance, suspense, horror? Do the child’s parents know, his siblings, his friends, his relatives? Can anyone possibly tell what the next day will bring?” she commented on life cycle of a person and concluded saying, “Whatever the life I have lived – sweet, sour and bitter, I am content, and happy with it.”
The Karachi Press Club’s auditorium was filled with her students, colleagues and friends, who gave her standing ovation when Prof. Shahida Kazi rose to speak. She was also presented a flower bouquet and a memorial shield by the KPC office bearers as a mark of respect and recognition to her services.
Former information minister, Javed Jabbar, Salim Mughal, Dr. Tauseef Ahmed Khan, Prof. Nisar Zuberi, Dr Tahir Masood, President Karachi press club Saeed Sarbazi, Secretary Shoiab Ahmad, and senior journalist Aamir Latif addressed the ceremony and eulogized the services of Madam Kazi and shared the memories.