ISLAMABAD, Jan 27 (APP): President Dr Arif Alvi has said that his philosophy about life is to practice empathy, forgiveness, and treating others with kindness to spread real peace and joy among humanity.
“Personal success in life is not about material achievements, but promoting affinity and shunning hatred towards other people,” he said in an interview with Tauseeq Haider, host of PTV’s morning show Rising Pakistan.
The live show featured several interesting aspects of the life of Arif Alvi, a boy born in Karachi in 1949 who later in 2018, rose to the office of the President of Pakistan.
President Alvi, 72, a dentist turned politician of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, said he would never want to forget that despite being the head of the State, he remained a “common middle-class person with a big responsibility on his shoulders”.
In his current position, he said, his priority was to take effective decisions on cases related to ombudsmen, encourage skills in information technology, and awareness for welfare of persons with disabilities.
The president said he and his wife Samina Alvi were strong supporters of women’s empowerment with their active participation in mainstream nation-building and also championed the protection of the rights of the disabled.
About his childhood memories, he recalled himself as a very naughty child and not so good at studies until his improvement after grade 9.
However, he recalled with fondness about his mother, a graduate from Lucknow, who inculcated in him the habit of book-reading and encouraged him to write letters to her in Urdu language for improvement in vocabulary.
In line with the tradition, Dr Alvi said he himself introduced his children to toy books from an early age to develop the habit of book-reading.
However, he said that ‘packaging of knowledge’ nowadays had changed after its online availability in form of e-books.
Asked about the favourite film stars of his time, he said that he used to watch Urdu, English, and Punjabi movies and liked actors Yousaf Khan (Dilip Kumar), Nadeem, Muhamamd Ali and other talents of their fields including Noor Jahan and Zia Mohiyuddin.
About his daily routine, Dr Alvi said he was a morning person with an exercise regime of four-kilometre walk, lifting six kilograms weights and reading several newspapers before heading to the office.
He urged people to adopt the habit of exercise to develop stamina and said that as he earlier used to play football and squash, he always found sport a ‘good stress reliever’.
He said the skills of dentistry and watch-making ran side by side in his family and mentioned that his father, also a dentist, could dismantle and assemble the entire machinery of a conventional timepiece.
About his active struggle to bring improvement to Pakistan, he recalled participating in the protests against General Ayub Khan and revealed to the host that as a result of firing, his arm still carried two bullets.
Asked if he missed anything after becoming the President of Pakistan, he said, it was the interaction with common people, which had become limited due to security protocols.
“However, I still go to public incognito thrice a week without protocols and enjoy at eateries,” he said.
Dr Alvi expressed his confidence in the talented youth, saying that they had the potential to transform the country into ‘Rising Pakistan’, with a revolution particularly in information technology.
However, he said that it was important for the nation and youth not to get deviated from the right direction amidst the flood of online information by being cautious about the use of fake news on social media.