An occasion of pride with sense of triumph and feeling of respect and euphoria for every patriotic Pakistani, domestically and internationally – ‘Pakistan Power 100 gala’ – Launched by Carter-Anderson the British Pakistan Trust, a group of young professional men and women who strive to improve Pakistan’s image abroad and connect inspiring individuals so they can work for the betterment of all Pakistanis. Khalid Darr, a veteran who founded the Pakistan Power 100 Awards and won applauses for highlighting the role of Pakistanis in Britain; the prestigious award ceremony hosted by Pakistan Power 100 in London on September 29, attended by hundreds of prominent personalities from the international Pakistani community and a multitude of non-Pakistani invitees who came to show their support and to appreciate the achievements by Pakistanis and the British Pakistani community. It was a preeminent gala projecting a real and sanguine image of a progressive Pakistan and not only the award winners but the whole 33,000+ nominated power leaders were also being projected as the brand ambassadors of the ‘Brand Pakistan’.
In my view just those 100 awardees are not the only power leaders representing Pakistan but the 33,000 nominated and many more who have dedicated their services to the communities in or outside Pakistan are all power leaders and brand ambassadors of the ‘BRAND PAKISTAN’. Some reservations have been expressed from different quarters of business and other segments of the society about the credibility of the whole process from nominations to the formation of judges’ panel (led by British investor James Caan) and to the final selections of awardees, I would not go into the details but must say that those awarded with power 100 awards definitely deserve it but there are many others who deserve this honor as well although choosing 100 out of more than 33000 is not an easy job but still I would say that there are some professionals who definitely are far better power leaders and more influential than some of those in the Power 100 list. Anyway public is the best judge so I better leave this issue for the public to decide and would like to move on to the auspicious event.
The largest ever initiative of its kind in promoting the most influential Pakistani men and women within Britain; Pakistan Power 100, developed by the British Pakistan Trust, has a mission to honor the very highest levels of achievements from within the Pakistani community and to positively promote the outstanding contribution made by Pakistani men and women on a local, national, and international level. The trust is a non-profit organization that will use the Pakistan Power 100 list to generate funds contributing to the betterment of all Pakistanis.
The illustrious ceremony began, after an intricate reception, the founder Khalid Darr welcomed the guests and was grateful to all the invitees and nominees for attending the ceremony and commenting on the importance of Power 100 Darr said, “To build a better Pakistan we need to learn the art of working together, we should seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. The Pakistani Diaspora across the world is a source of great strength for Pakistan and I believe that if we all come together to collectively use our intellectual and financial capital, we can bring significant and positive change to the people of Pakistan.”
Pakistan Power 100 aimed to promote Pakistan to the global community, to showcase the greatest influencers and to work towards changing the perception of Pakistan through the highest achievers. The aim of awards should be to celebrate achievements and very rightly he said there are many ways this can be done, it doesn’t always have to be done at a glamorous event. After Darr’s patriotic speech, the awards were presented to the outstanding achievers in their respective fields.
Since its inception Pakistan has been surrounded by countless issues including but not limited to ill-formed/missing infrastructure, insufficient refined resources, barren or obsolete factories and technologies, has been oscillating between civilian and military rulers and all these have contributed to the current prevailing chaos and pessimism among the masses for which people often say “don’t know how this country is surviving”, even many of us ready to go a step ahead to declare it a failed state. My words for them are; it will never be a failed state and not only it will survive but will thrive and outshine in the galaxies of world nations, as long as we have a core group of dynamic Pakistani men & women, representing a wide range of fields and sectors including politics, business, media, technology, culture, healthcare, and social welfare/philanthropy who, against all odds have been working hard for the betterment of state of affairs of Pakistanis. In recent years the once patriotic Pakistani Diaspora, although continuing to demonstrate a level of patriotism, has become more cynical towards Pakistan due to the regularity of damaging news stories about Pakistan which have caused great challenges for the country on a national and international level. This event brought sanguinity to the depressing Pakistani diaspora.
These individuals are leaders, able to steer opinion and action towards the most positive possible outcomes in economic, social or cultural contexts. They are people who, either through position or personality exercise a significant power that influences events and sets parameters in the conduct of their organization, the climate of political debate and the shaping of new ideas. Pakistan Power 100 recognizes the most influential Pakistani men & women internationally, whose exceptional work makes an enormous and essential contribution to the wealth, health and intellectual wellbeing of their respective communities.
The purpose of these awards is to pay tribute to these and to inspire the upcoming generations to prepare Pakistan to face the upcoming challenges and responsibilities of global citizenship by bringing together the future power leaders from across the world to generate creative, cross-sect-oral approaches to leadership and problem solving; to build networks of trust across regional boundaries; and, to educate each other in the highest ideals of values-based intellectual capital.
Influence is “the act or power of producing an effect without apparent exertion of force or direct exercise of command.” Societies around the globe are driven by influential people, objects and ideas from various sources. Highlighting any name here would be controversial except one for which no one will have any objection is the name of Mr. Abdul Sattar Edhi about whom Khalid Darr very rightly said “when talking about outstanding Pakistanis, the first name that comes to mind is the magnanimous Abdul Sattar Edhi”, who hardly managed to show up and take part at the event despite his sickness and a hectic schedule. Mr. Edhi received the Humanitarian Lifetime Award for his lifelong commitment to bettering the lives of all Pakistanis. His devotion to the welfare of mankind was reflected in his selfless and heart-felt speech for which many of the attendees couldn’t control their tears and he received a standing ovation at the end.
The overall purpose should be to highlight role models so that the next generation of young Pakistanis has mentors to motivate themselves and to change the perception of Pakistan across the globe and to reignite the collective consciousness. We need a stronger, more professional manner in which to promote the positive aspects of our culture and religion and the valued contribution our academics, doctors, professionals and business men & women make to this country in which we live and work.
The glamorous gala event was then concluded with a brilliant performance by Salman Ahmad.
Alongside the Pakistan Power 100, Carter-Anderson also published several supplementary lists, including the Pakistan Power 100 Women, the Pakistan Past 50 list of influential Pakistanis from history, and the Pakistan Future 50, which will rank the top 50 up and coming young professionals in Pakistan today and the power 100 future leaders who are destined to become tomorrow’s leaders.