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Islamabad

Old friends are hard to forget.

Kamran Rehmat:
Islamabad: 19 May 2022: Even a week after Fahd Husain decided to move on from being a distinguished journalist (an ex-editor, colleague and friend in yesteryears) to finding himself seated next to the dodgy Aun Chaudhry in Shahbaz Sharif's cabinet made up largely of ministers accused of wrongdoing is unsettling. His current boss, no less, is facing serious money laundering cases, a reality he was aware of before signing up to become his special assistant. One knows what his critics say about his apparent political leaning in views expressed on air and in writing in recent months and years, but it still came as a complete surprise. Both of us shared a great working relationship and occasionally, he would let know how proud he was to have me around. But that never stopped me from asking tough questions and often persuading him to take a bolder approach to news information. I can recall taking a stand on a story of one of our premier reporters, Rauf Klasra, that ruffled feathers in the power corridors, and he told me about his limitations following pressures from the-then powerful Punjab CM. But when he saw I was willing to quit rather than leave a poor victim of the CM's highhandedness in the lurch after taking up the cudgels for her, he came around and we did carry the story eventually. There were other interesting episodes which make a part of the lives of journalists providing an enriching experience. Away from the action, we had once seriously considered launching our own newspaper. In due course, he moved on, cascading through different media outlets on the domestic scene and so did I, abroad. The Fahd I knew back from 'The Muslim' days and the one who has landed where he is today is as different as chalk and cheese. Without being judgemental on his political choice (don't wish to get into what he used to say back then), I am more shocked at his leaving journalism in an "independent" mien. He just did not seem like someone who would ever eschew his 'first love' in favour of what is evident right now. Wish him the best nevertheless. .

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