Dawn columnist Ardeshir Cowasjee passes away

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Karachi: Known for sarcastic yet insightful style of writing, senior columnist and social worker Ardeshir Cowasjee passed away on Saturday.

He has been suffering from illness for a long time.

Cowasjee had gained popularity for columns in Daily Dawn and his efforts for sustainable development in Karachi metropolitan, the house of around 20 million people.

According to Nadeem F Piracha, another Dawn columnist called him one of Pakistan’s finest & most conscientious columnists.

A short biography of the eminent columnist as Wikipedia defined is as follow:


Ardeshir Cowasjee was born in 1926 at Karachi and hails from the well-known Cowasjee Parsi (Zoroastrian) family. His father Rustom Fakirjee Cowasjee was a businessman in merchant shipping.

Ardeshir attended the Bai Virbaiji Soparivala Parsi High School (BVS) and graduated from DJ Science College, Karachi. Later, he joined his father’s business, the Cowasjee Group, and married Nancy Dinshaw in 1953. He has two children, Ava (daughter) and Rustom (son).


Cowasjee was appointed by Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto as Managing Director of Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) in 1973 but was jailed for 72 days in 1976 by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto for which no explanation has been given to date; it is said that Prime Minister Bhutto did that to rein Cowasjee because the latter was becoming increasingly vocal about Bhutto’s authoritarian ways.

Cowasjee subsequently started writing letters to the editor of Dawn Newspaper, which led him to become a permanent columnist. Since then, his hard-hitting and well-researched columns in Dawn have continuously exposed corruption, nepotism and incompetence in different local, provincial and national governments for the last twenty years.In 2011 Cowasjee bid farewell to Dawn by publishing his last article in the newspaper on 25 December 2011,however he has hinted that he may write rarely for the newspaper in the coming future.


Ardeshir Cowasjee is also the financier of many scholarships for students wishing to pursue higher education. These include grants for both local and overseas education. Although these are given out as loans, it is not expected that most of these funds will be returned to him. However, Cowasjee does encourage the receivers to return them so that others can benefit from those funds. These philanthropic services are provided by the Cowasjee Foundation.

1 Response to " Dawn columnist Ardeshir Cowasjee passes away "

  1. Aksjdsahdkjh says:

    bless his soul, 

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