One student’s journey from small-town Balochistan to Harvard University

Published: September 8, 2011

Karrar Hussain Jaffar (left) at his commencement at Harvard University. PHOTO KARRAR HUSSAIN

KARACHI: 

Located on the outskirts of Quetta, is the barren valley of Mariabad where the Hazara lead slow-paced lives. These tribal people, living in narrow brick huts speckled along the rugged hillside, typically sell loose cloth, sweaters or tea for their livelihood.

Like most poor people, their aspirations rarely go beyond sustaining themselves in this underdeveloped nook of Balochistan. Many of them live and die in Mariabad — unaware of the complex concerns and tremendous pace of life in urban centres like Karachi and Lahore.

But one student — the son of a trader who sold Quaid-e-Azam style caps in Mariabad for a living — dared to tread a radically different path. Karrar Hussain Jaffar transcended the confines of an obscure town in Balochistan, where people rarely educate themselves beyond matriculation, to study at the prestigious Harvard University. His story — a narrative about the wondrous possibilities of equal educational opportunities — is truly inspirational.

“My childhood friends, with whom I spent my youth playing cricket, drive suzukis and rickshaws in Quetta for a living, while I am a PhD student in the US,” says Karrar in a humble tone. “I often wonder why God chose me, out of all the people in my community, to get ahead in life?”

Karrar attributes his educational achievement to his father’s passion for his children’s higher education. He vividly remembers the chilly morning when his father showed him the ad for Lahore University of Management Sciences’ national outreach programme (NOP), which aimed to sponsor education and living expenses for capable students who could not have afford to pay.

“I was doing my FSc at Cadet college and didn’t even know a single thing about LUMS at that point in time,” he fondly recollects. “I didn’t take the ad seriously because LUMS did not offer engineering, the field I was interested in.”

When he returned back to college from his winter break, he attended a presentation by a LUMS’ faculty member, who introduced students to the national outreach programme.

“At the end of the presentation we all took a pre-screening exam,” he explains. “A few weeks later, I got a letter from LUMS inviting me to attend sponsored classes for SAT preparation.”

During the four weeks he spent rigorously studying for the SATs, he fell in love with LUMS. To him the institution seemed otherworldly; its grand building, spacious classrooms and impressive teachers fascinated him.

“I never knew things could be so orderly and perfect; it was like I was in a foreign country,” he remarks.  “I felt very motivated to study hard and join the institution.”

But his herculean struggle with English often left him frustrated.

“I had always dismissed English as a colonial remnant in our country so I really struggled while preparing for the test.”

Yet with utmost dedication, Karrar managed to clear the screening exam at the end of the four-week training and was selected to take the SAT exams, sponsored by the university. After obtaining an impressive score in his SATs, Karrar got admitted in LUMS and was offered a full scholarship and a monthly stipend.

“I came to LUMS in very high spirits,” reminisces the bright student.

But Karrar, who had attended the NOP training program at LUMS during the quiet summer break, had never seen the institution in full semestral bloom. When he saw throngs of students, clad in western wear and fluent in English, emerging from every nook and cranny, his excitement gave way to culture shock.

“I was used to wearing shalwar kamiz, but at LUMS most people were wearing jeans. I would greet people by saying salaam, while the other students would ask ‘what’s up?’” he recollects in an amused tone.

Often feeling like a misfit during his first year at university, Karrar mostly spent his days with other NOP students. “But after a year I managed to befriend other students from Lyceum and Karachi Grammar school.”

He sheepishly adds, “After a year I figured out that ‘what’s up?’ is equivalent to saying salaam.”

Karrar graduated on the Dean’s honour list, with a cumulative grade point average of 3.7 and 3.68 in his majors, Maths and Economics, respectively.

“I got job offers in the banking industry after graduating but I turned them down because I wanted to tread an academic path,” he explains in a categorical tone.

A year after graduating, Karrar got a Fulbright scholarship to study in the US.

“I simply told the interview panel that I want to come back to Balochistan after completing my studies. That’s where my home is; that’s where I belong,” he explains passionately.

But perhaps the most memorable moment in his life — an incident he recalls quite animatedly — was when he found out that he made it to Harvard University.

“I had no internet at home in Mariabad so I walked 15 minutes or so to a nearby internet cafe to check my email for Harvard’s decision,” he explains. “When I saw the acceptance email, I just thought it was too good to be true.”

Yet after he raced back home to reveal the news to his parents, his moment of rapture soon transformed into a session of lengthy clarification.

“My mother asked me what Harvard was and my father asked me to wait for potential offers by other universities” he says with a laugh. “It took a while to convince them that I got into the world’s top university.”

But ironically for a student, who was left disconcerted by the ‘westernised’ student body at LUMS, adjusting to life at an American institution was smooth sailing.

“After LUMS, I was very used to being around different types of people so studying and living in the US was not such a problem.”

Karrar completed his Master’s last year and is currently pursuing a PhD in Economics from the University of Southern California.

What does he want to do with all the knowledge he is amassing?

“I want to increase educational awareness in Balochistan—particularly amongst people from my community,” he says.

The young academic’s goal might seem like the reiteration of the clichéd promise of “development” that many educated Pakistan promise their country. However, Karrar is actually a first-hand witness of how education can revolutionize communities and places.

“Because of all that I achieved, my parents allowed my sister to get college education in Lahore and my brother got the motivation to get a scholarship to study in Australia,” he says with a hint of pride.

Karrar confesses that most of his family and friends cannot even comprehend what his life is like in the US. But he is fairly confident that after he returns, he can change that.

“I can make them realise the value of education,” he says.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 8th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (476)

  • Ali Hassan
    Sep 10, 2011 - 10:29AM

    i love that , i know how karrar did hard to manage all this and i really feel proud of being his country fellow . Karrar you gave us real courage and happiness in such a worst time of disappointment. i love you story.

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  • maneeza sajjad qureshi
    Sep 10, 2011 - 11:16AM

    Mashallah
    this was really something that came from his father’s motivation and upbringing
    may Allah ease the path for this nation towards glorious future with ease and honour
    god luck to him for more achievements in life
    Inshallah

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  • Shahzad, Saiyed
    Sep 10, 2011 - 11:21AM

    Bravo! you made it ….. i have a feeling that you were my class fellow @ PAF School Samungli ….

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  • Umair Waheed Sheikh, Khayban e Hafiz,IBA Karachi
    Sep 10, 2011 - 12:12PM

    According to Fulbright regulations he would have had to come back to Pakistan to serve the country. Now he is pursuing PHD and thereafter may get a work offer in the US. Talk about helping his people in Balochistan. These phonies is what annoys me. ( @ author: why dont u print this, try to accept views from other people too rather than toe an official line)

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  • Khawar Sajjad Khawaja
    Sep 10, 2011 - 12:23PM

    Nation is always proud of its heroes………Karar you are an inspiration and real Hero of us all. May Allah Bless you with success and enlighten your heart. May you succeed in all your endeavors. We do indeed need people in every nook and corner of Pakistan who can kindle the flame of education among their people and bring glory to our homeland.

    We do indeed look forward to see many of people from your hometown to follow suit and despite all odds make to higher echelons of Government in Pakistan where you are needed desperately

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  • Haroon Khattak
    Sep 10, 2011 - 2:07PM

    I am proud to say that we spent 5 years in Cadet College Kohat.
    Good luck Karar and have a wonderful life ahead.
    Great Achievement

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  • Sep 10, 2011 - 2:43PM

    Congratulations to Karar with all the best wishes.Recommend

  • alina tariq
    Sep 10, 2011 - 3:04PM

    i realy appreciate the motivation of you karrar. well don:-)

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  • alina tariq
    Sep 10, 2011 - 3:06PM

    wak karrar wah:-)Recommend

  • Mehr
    Sep 10, 2011 - 3:47PM

    WOW, MashAllah that is so amazing, God bless you and i’m so happy about what you want to do in Balochistan :’)

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  • Khan
    Sep 10, 2011 - 3:50PM

    It is not often one comes across such a truly marvellous story. I wonder how other Karrar Hussain Jaffars exist in Pakistan. Young people bursting with talent who have been badly betrayed by the almost non-existent State education system in our country. Our national propensity for spending our meager resources on weaponry and other non-developmental expenditures means that our youth and by extension the future of our country is doomed to a dismal future.

    Ironic isn’t it that this young man’s luck in the end came from the much reviled USA

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  • Ashfaq Ahmad
    Sep 10, 2011 - 4:17PM

    I have written something relevant to Karrar story on Facebook.Please read it,if interested.Thanks

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  • Mirza
    Sep 10, 2011 - 4:40PM

    You are the pride of Hazaras. I wish every single member of our community could follow you because you are the role modle for our youth. May God bless you.Recommend

  • wasim
    Sep 10, 2011 - 5:17PM

    Hats off to u, by the way watsup now? Dont u ever get stuck there like othe Pakistanis!Recommend

  • Ashfaq Ahmad
    Sep 10, 2011 - 5:26PM

    Well done Karrar.Wish you success.Amin.

    Another Hazara from Quetta-Sharbat Ali Changezi roze to great heights in early 1950s.
    He studied at Government College.Got commission at PAF.Won Sword of Honour.Became an ace Pilot.Got to the rank of Air Vice Marshal.

    Another Quetta Boy-

    Mohammad Anwar Malik
    Studied at Quetta College
    Topped in F.Sc in 1959 (Punjab University) Missed Dr.Abdus Salaam’s record by a few marks.
    Studied at Enineering University,Lahore.Broke all time record in final year.
    Went to US.Broke 126 record at University there.
    Got Ph.D
    Wrote books
    His name is in America’s Who is Who.
    Got FS1 -same grade as President Nixon di (I dont know what FS1 means though)
    Designed a Truck for American Motors.
    Worked as Adviser at UN.His colleagues included Dr.Manmohan Singh .
    Read many appers.Shared stage at Delhi with Dr.Abukl Kalam of india.
    Lives a quiet life in Quetta at present

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  • Durdana JAmali
    Sep 10, 2011 - 5:38PM

    So Karar if people like you can change life for your siblings and yourself then you can also bring change in Baluchistan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!ALLAH always keep you blessed.

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  • waqar saleemi
    Sep 10, 2011 - 5:40PM

    Even after scholarship, an ordinary person can not afford the living of 3 children in Harvard US, Australia and in prestigious university of Lahore, no matter how much part-time work children do now a days. I am myself a student on scholarship in London and not being able to make a living for myself. This person have been given too much attention without proper scrutiny. Recommend

  • Sep 10, 2011 - 5:42PM

    speechless ……………. too good ……….

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  • waqar saleemi
    Sep 10, 2011 - 5:49PM

    Even after scholarship, an ordinary person can not afford the living of 3 children in Harvard US, Australia and in prestigious university of Lahore, no matter how much part-time work children do now a days. Some of his relatives may have connections with the corrupted govt. officials of Pakistan who keep on looting everybody. This person have been given too much attention without proper scrutiny.

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  • Obaid Hashmi
    Sep 10, 2011 - 6:01PM

    May Allah bless you Karrar.. Pakistan needs leaders like you… Pakistan paindabad…

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  • Iqbal Shafiq
    Sep 10, 2011 - 6:14PM

    it proves my point that good english, dress or school doesnt matter, what matter is talent and good brain.

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  • saima anwar
    Sep 10, 2011 - 6:49PM

    excellent work .hope u come back for ur people.

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  • Anum Asad
    Sep 10, 2011 - 7:02PM

    Bravo man….u r gr8 inspiration fr our youngstrz……

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  • Karachiite
    Sep 10, 2011 - 7:28PM

    @ Rizwan Takkhar

    You are so right brother. He is surely a hero and the hero we all need to follow. We need someone to reinvigorate and rejuvenate our dying spirits. We need someone like him to resurrect or moribund confidence as a nation. He surely is someone to become the subject of a film. Wish if Shoaib Mansoor can carve his new movie around my Hero “Karrar”.

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  • Karachiite
    Sep 10, 2011 - 7:29PM

    @ Rizwan Takkhar

    You are so right brother. He is surely a hero and the hero we all need to follow. We need someone to reinvigorate and rejuvenate our dying spirits. We need someone like him to resurrect or moribund confidence as a nation. He surely is someone to become the subject of a film. Wish if Shoaib Mansoor can carve his new movie around my Hero “Karrar”.Recommend

  • Sep 10, 2011 - 7:57PM

    I am confident that these scholarships like NOP and OSP would soon make Pakistan a different country in the world. Well Done!!!

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  • fatima hurmat ul ain
    Sep 10, 2011 - 9:35PM

    Excellent

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  • Sep 10, 2011 - 9:42PM

    That’s really inspiring, we’re proud of you Karar!

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  • Asif Ilyas
    Sep 10, 2011 - 10:14PM

    He is brilliant.I appreciate that he wants back to his native village.Balochistan needs more like him but he belongs to hazara comminity which is under attack now a days from Lashkar-i-jangvi.My ALLAH ! Grant us strength to avoide this “war against terror’Recommend

  • muhammad afzaal
    Sep 10, 2011 - 10:28PM

    Karar you are great, you have proved that if a person has a will, Almighty pave the way for the success,you are the example for the peoples living in the remotest side of the country

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  • Syed Ikram Haider
    Sep 10, 2011 - 10:32PM

    Very inspirational and motivational, specially for the Youth of Baluchistan. if Karrar thinks God have choosen him. karrar now its your turn to choose youth from your community or Provence and give them a right direction.

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  • zehra
    Sep 10, 2011 - 11:14PM

    inspirational and motivational. thumbs up dude!

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  • Shariq
    Sep 10, 2011 - 11:19PM

    After reading this, it seems like nothing is impossible. Truly an inspirational account of a daring person. Now if we could all be like him, adamant about education and pursuing a life of success, than I don’t think anything can stand in our way.

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  • Maryam
    Sep 10, 2011 - 11:22PM

    That was simply amazing and extremely inspirational! MashAllah!

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  • Waqar Hassan
    Sep 11, 2011 - 12:18AM

    He didnt study at some school beneath the tree, but at Cadet college. So not a big deal if he gets chance to be one of the NOP

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  • Zohaib
    Sep 11, 2011 - 12:29AM

    Proud of you Karrar! That’s one great feat you achieved.

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  • Pat_riot
    Sep 11, 2011 - 12:30AM

    I can see more and more American scholarships showered on the boys like him in the future who belong to such less developed areas. For some, I have just disrespected the genius – NO, I have’nt. Its not now that our country has started producing geniuses. Hard work is our very old tradition but its just recent that our people get mentioned on such a large scale. I can understand some reasons behind all this. Without disrespecting, Young man! whatever you have acheived so far is amazing but its also true that uptil now, you have done it all for yourself. Your Fsc (Cadet college), Bsc (LUMS), Msc(Harvard) and your ongoing Phd (University of Southern California) is all in your bag. The true salute will be done when you will fulfil your promise of serving you mother nation. When you will impart this precious knowledge to those hundreds and thousands back home.

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  • sadaf shoaib
    Sep 11, 2011 - 12:38AM

    Well done Karrar…So proud of you!

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  • M Chishti
    Sep 11, 2011 - 2:54AM

    I wish you all the best in live, you are a hero and as pakistani I am so proud of you. lastly I would add you made our nation so proud. God bless you.

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  • Sep 11, 2011 - 2:57AM

    salam to all of you !
    my name is Ali Naqi Baig and i read this page written about HAZARA nation which i dont agreee with, first of all i want to tell MARIA WAQAR that Hazara is not a tribe its a name of a nation, secound we do not live is small huts which yyou have mentioned in your page, we in a small living area have the best living style in balochistan and maybe in pakistan level too, in such small area we have the best boys/ girls primery, secondray, high and to university level education. best language centres and alot more which you never seen before.. i want to ask you personaly one question that have you ever been to ALAMDAR ROAD MARIABAD? i dont think coz when i read your silly words about HAZARA nation i just started laughing that there are still people who can write without having any informatuon about it. its ofcourse that there are people who lives in small houses beside the hill areas but you can not name them HUTS.
    and by the way we can proudly say that we are more then 80 % highly educated( nation).
    I HOPE I WILL RECIEVE A RESPONCE FROM YOUR SIDE.

    NAQI BAIG

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  • Mazhar
    Sep 11, 2011 - 5:20AM

    WOW!

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  • Nadeem Yousuf
    Sep 11, 2011 - 5:53AM

    Aye puttar hatan te nahin wikday….
    Kiyun labhdi phirain bazar kude….
    Aye dain aye mere Data di…..
    Na aywein takran mar kude…..

    Exceptional people like Karrar are truly gift of God. They are born to be successful and are pride for their family, friends and motherland. May Allah (swt) gives this young man a long, healthy and properous life. Salute to his parents, especially to his mother, who gave birth to such a jewel. In Urdu term, a true, Gudri mein La’al).

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  • Sanad
    Sep 11, 2011 - 6:21AM

    Inspiring indeed. But Karrar, you must understand that Salaam is not equal to What’s up!

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  • Aamir
    Sep 11, 2011 - 7:53AM

    @HERA (Health Education & Rehabilitation Association):
    This has been a great achievement and an honor for Pakistan… It shows that, if proper guidance and education given to young children, Pakistan can really prosper and inshallah come out of this wrath of illiteracy…

    Wat to go HERA

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  • fazal nasir
    Sep 11, 2011 - 8:21AM

    very good karrar. people should learn lesson, as i have learnt.

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  • Mussarat
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:23AM

    i never ever read any article online but your article was the first one i read and interestingly, ‘ i wept ‘ lol

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  • Izzi Khan
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:29AM

    Reading your story left me with tears in my eyes and a big smile .. may God bless you for all your efforts! It’s inspirational to see that there are so many people out there willing to take on a challenge and make it to the top, in contrast to the typical adolescent these days who wants an iphone, laptop and a degree handed over on a silver platter! May your story inspire others to achieve what you have, iA!

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  • abuwajeeh hashmi
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:37AM

    bravo brother ! but i have one request , do come to your country , your city , your community at least serve them for a decade then I know you would go for money making and luxuries. Please dedicate a decade minimum for you homeland.I wish you success in all your future endevours.Amen.

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  • Tajmughal
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:55AM

    Excellent Karrar, you are adding to nation’s pride. One small suggestion….before coming back, 1st try to build a team of courageous youth in US and also in Pakistan to bring some tangible change in this society, where everyone at the helm of affairs is there to stop you. By this way you can succeed in your goal and bring change effectively, cuz the degrading forces here are much much more stronger than the constructive ones.

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  • Eid
    Sep 11, 2011 - 12:11PM

    Karrar bro, we are waiting you here in Quetta…not these days…as Hazaras are being killed by the terrorists..but in future. Hope you come in Balochistan and will spread the light of education… Proud of you …Poud to be Hazara.

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  • Shams uz Zaman
    Sep 11, 2011 - 2:16PM

    Now that is really unfair. I have lived in Quetta for almost 3 years and there are lot of learned people living in Mariabad with some of them living now in various cities of Pakistan and even other countries of the world. Karrar Hussain is indeed the most flourishing star but its not fair to declare Mariabad a completely barren and uneducated place. The reporter filing the report must have known the facts at least.

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  • sajjad hussain
    Sep 11, 2011 - 2:34PM

    Well done karrar hussain. We are proud of U.
    This inspiring story must be highlight by the
    local media here in pak also. This will help the
    talented youngsters to set a Goal thinking beyond
    the hindrance they have…..
    Best of Luck

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  • Rahat
    Sep 11, 2011 - 3:10PM

    MashaAllah great Karrar bhai..may Allah (S.W.T) give u more and more success in every step of life..you have made the history in Balochistan..our leaders are followers this is main reason behind the prosperity of Pakistan..
    A man is not made for defeat..Recommend

  • Shahid
    Sep 11, 2011 - 4:11PM

    Education has no boundaries and it belong to those who work hard. Masha Allah, well done Karrar. I will now forward this article to my children to take some inspiration

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  • Asad Niaz
    Sep 11, 2011 - 4:29PM

    Such an exquisite and fascinated story ever .. Hats off Dear, May Allah Bless you , And I pray that you achieve in your dreams and walk upon the path you have chosen :) Best of Luck..

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  • Sep 11, 2011 - 4:56PM

    mesmerized

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  • Asmat
    Sep 11, 2011 - 5:08PM

    Karar was my class fellow in class 7th , I am so delighted to read the article, Karar Boy proud of you , keep the good work going

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  • Aarij Rasheed
    Sep 11, 2011 - 5:27PM

    Quiet motivating, and inspiring too. May Allah bless you man !!

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  • Sep 11, 2011 - 5:48PM

    @Sajid Tungekar:

    May Allah Help Mr. Karrar to Serve the UMMAH and Pakistan (Insha Allah). Mr. Sajid please also help people who can not afford Insha Allah).
    http://www.aihsaas.org

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  • ummama nazar
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:02PM

    i will also apply for lums.i am really inspired of it.

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  • ummama nazar
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:04PM

    pakistan is very proud of u

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  • Muhammad Afzal Shaheen
    Sep 11, 2011 - 10:04PM

    very encouraging example.All participants have beautifully expressed their sentiments.I endorse all of you. It has proved that the conducive atmosphere is needed for better results.Karrar got admission in Cadet College Kohat which paved a great path for him.It is needed that more cadet colleges may be established preferably in under developed areas such as Baluchistan. this will provide the atmosphere which is badly needed. The gestures of Sajid are also very encouraging and the same needs to be followed by all those who are in a position to deliver.
    The comment of LLoyed Gorge is also very correct.Under the prevalent situation when extremists are targeting the teachers and Hazara community especially in Baluchistan we should pray for his happy life when he is planning to serve his community. Lastly we should pray for peaceful Baluchistan and definitely Pakistan.
    Regards
    Muhammad Afzal Shaheen
    Lahore

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  • waleed
    Sep 11, 2011 - 11:12PM

    Truly inspirational Karar.You have done a great job brother and good luck with your Phd.

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  • Jamal Uddin Ahmed
    Sep 12, 2011 - 1:18AM

    Masha’Allah, very inspiring and touching. We should be thankful to Almighty Allah who has given strength to our young people to do hard work and shine as a star. We as individual and as a nation must do our best in every situation to get education and use it for the betterment of our nation and society and for overall humanity. We need to say “We are proud to be Pakistani and want to serve our country”. Allah bless Karrar Hussain and his parents for the hard work.

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  • Sanaullah
    Sep 12, 2011 - 2:03AM

    Well done mate. Just want to confirm, did you go to BRC loralai in 6th 7th? I guess you’re the same karar husain. Anyways you are a born genius. husain. Anyways you are a born genius.

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  • Asif Ali
    Sep 12, 2011 - 8:24AM

    We can produce hundreds of Karar Hussain, if our rights and merit is not bypass. You are proud of Hazara, well done keep it up.

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  • Sep 12, 2011 - 9:50AM

    Dear

    When a child performed a splendid task, I always say that the child is not succeeded but his your parents and teachers got success.

    I really appreciate your efforts too.

    Thanking you.

    Yours truly,

    Nazar Hussain Kazmi
    Translation Officer
    National Language Authority,
    Sector H-8/4, Islamabad, Pakistan.
    Off: +92 (0) 51-9250311-13
    Res: +92 (0) 51-4451180
    Mob: +92 (0) 322-8571816
    nazarkazmi58@hotmail.com
    nazarkazmi58@yahoo.com
    Skype: nazarkazmi58

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  • shakeel afridi
    Sep 12, 2011 - 10:15AM

    Congratulations. You have made us proud.
    Once a kohatian is always a Kohatian

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  • adl
    Sep 12, 2011 - 10:35AM

    AOA and well done brothers

    please use this knowledge to serve your country like AQK in your own field. Do not through your self to the NWO who are sucking blood from poor and feeding the rich.

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  • Murtaza Ali
    Sep 12, 2011 - 2:51PM

    Speechless!

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  • Hazara Karar Hussain
    Sep 12, 2011 - 6:31PM

    Proud of U Karar Hussain Jaffri one of the most hard worker son of Hazara Nation. Our Sallam and love to ur parents.

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  • Muhammad Waseem
    Sep 12, 2011 - 7:41PM

    Congratlation

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  • Sep 12, 2011 - 9:25PM

    This is what we really need. More happy stories. Who gave this boy the chance? He got an opportunity as everyone does but used it for his advantage which a lot of people fail to do. Bravo.

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  • Sep 12, 2011 - 11:39PM

    i m unconditionally inspired the way you choose what should life like be.live longer…

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  • Khan
    Sep 13, 2011 - 6:23AM

    Makes me very glad brother. I am doing my PhD at UofWaterloo but I had to work my way through University. I remember there were days when I didn’t have anything to eat or didn’t have money for books. I couldn’t even buy clothes, shaving gel or even a razor for the duration of my B.Sc., all the while working three jobs. I am definitely coming back to Pakistan after my PhD. Haven’t been to Pakistan in over a decade, miss my family and home but the will is strong as ever. One day…

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  • isloo boy
    Sep 13, 2011 - 9:25AM

    just like my math teacher he used to make wooden crates to pay his fee now he was invited to southkorea to attend a seminar

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  • Rama
    Sep 13, 2011 - 10:33AM

    Awesome and SO heart warming, tears welled up! Hope he returns and makes the difference to his village and inspires others to do so as well for the nation. Best wishes.

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  • Uroosh Amber
    Sep 13, 2011 - 11:10AM

    Impressive! your achievement has made you distinguished among your community. keep yourself focus on your goals. for now WELLDONE karrar!

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  • fakher alam
    Sep 13, 2011 - 12:35PM

    Truly inspiring,,you have done a great job but the one thing which no buddy has mentioned is that……this is your luck not your talent.dun be proud of yourself.okkkkk

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  • Topak Khan
    Sep 13, 2011 - 2:40PM

    Please join Karrar Hussain Jaffar’s facebook page and show your appreciation for him and may be interact with him

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Karrar-Hussain-Jaffar/261212620578903

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  • Topak Khan
    Sep 13, 2011 - 3:34PM

    @Umer Waheed Sheikh sb,
    Fulbright allows you to pursue PhD and going for PhD he hasn’t done anything wrong. If he stays there after his PhD then you should come back and give your opinion right now you are just speculating.

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  • Ghulam Mudassir
    Sep 13, 2011 - 4:12PM

    i am very much happy after reading your successful and hard story………Keep it up karar…….keep it up

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  • Muhammad Ali
    Sep 13, 2011 - 4:36PM

    @SRK:
    really happy to hear about your hubby. And more happy that he is from DG Khan as I am also from DG Khan. Whats his good name maam?

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  • faiza
    Sep 13, 2011 - 7:58PM

    good

    goingRecommend

  • Ayesha
    Sep 13, 2011 - 10:13PM

    @Sajid Tungekar:
    There is a page on facebook INTELLIGENT PAKISTAN , its based in canada and this group is also trying to achieve same . may be same mind should join hands

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  • Tooba Idrees Sukhera
    Sep 13, 2011 - 10:30PM

    Simply motivating! Shows how hard work and determination in the right direction can help you achieve you more than you could have ever dreamed off. I was amused how Karrar’s parents wanted him to wait for decisions from other universities before accepting Harvard’s offer, that was sweet of his parents. Always thinks and praying for the best for their child. I too have an ambition to go to Harvard and my parents are very supportive of my ambition. InshaAllah by 2013. :)

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  • ammar malik
    Sep 13, 2011 - 11:38PM

    I m impressed!
    I also belong to Quetta,I m astonished to knw tht mr.Qarrar touched the zenith of sucess, its an example for al the students of balouchistanRecommend

  • MUHAMMAD JAMAL AYUB
    Sep 14, 2011 - 1:55AM

    Son my best wishes to you and your family.I have been in quetta and remember General Musa Khan rise to the top most postion in Pak army and he too belongs to your community.This is great commendations to Balouchistan and finally to Pakistan.

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  • Captain Rauf
    Sep 14, 2011 - 2:03AM

    Dear Kakkar,
    I am living in Boston just a little away from the Harvard University. Whenever I walked across the University or looking at the students, I am always woundering how good it would have been for Pakistani students to be part of this majestic institution. I know that about 15 Pakistani students are studing in Harvard, I am proud of you all and from now on I will be searching you in the face of all the students.
    Really, proud of you and may Allah give you all the success and happiness. May some more brothers and sisters also come over and enlightened our country with the long lonst education.
    All the best and stay happy.
    Sallam

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  • Ahsan
    Sep 14, 2011 - 7:04AM

    Salute :)

    Proud of u!!!

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  • ANI
    Sep 14, 2011 - 3:02PM

    Praise be to ALLAH Who treats all of HIs creation as equal! What an inspiring journey! Very proud of you Karrar. LUMS is really what it stands for! The government of Pakistan should learn something from this university! If one university can this much change the life of a person and latter his community then think what a massive change can all the universities in pakistan bring!

    LUMS NOP is a VERY humble and honest policy. So very proud of it! I want all of my Pakistani brothers and sisters to progress n this life and as well as the next!

    But all of Karrar’s efforts would show their full colour when he do something for his community and for the less privileged people.

    You wonder why ALLAH has chosen you amongst all the other members of your community? The answer is that He chose you for a PURPOSE, and that purpose is to benefit your community in Baluchistan. :)

    ALLAH has done so much for you, now it’s time for you to do something and fullfill the purpose for which you were chosen.

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  • Asfand yar kakar
    Sep 14, 2011 - 7:35PM

    great,now its ur responsibility to guide other students frm balochistan

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  • SHAHIDA KHAN
    Sep 14, 2011 - 10:01PM

    this is such a heart touching article , im speechless . im so proud of u dear ,u did a great job , exemple 4 the youngsters . may ALLAHS peace , mearcy and blessings be upon u INSHALLAH and keep u streate path ,take care .

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  • arsalan
    Sep 14, 2011 - 10:25PM

    whatsup karar :)

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  • Mo
    Sep 15, 2011 - 12:21AM

    Great going brother!

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  • Sep 15, 2011 - 1:25AM

    i am very disapointed that you guys only put the possitive comments or those comments which are in his fever but dont like to show the dark part of his life.
    i am one of hazara man but i dont agree with his comments which he has written in his interview.
    hazara nation in a vary peaceful and educated nation but i am feeling very sad that one of our own is talking such words about us which does not have any truth inside, we in a small area has alot of heros alive and dead for pakistan , and alot of heros in education and sports which are worthful to discuss about but this damnfool person only talks about those points which shows that how narrrow minded person he is about his nation.
    i am not proud of such person after all there are alot of boys and girls who deserve more respect then him, i will thank him personally that day when he work for his nation and country with a honest heart.
    long live hazara and long live pakistan.

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  • Arsalan Nazim
    Sep 15, 2011 - 2:56AM

    So proud of you Karrar – Walk with your head held high! I hope you would make a lasting impression in Pakistan’s academia!

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  • Murad Haider
    Sep 15, 2011 - 3:23AM

    Very much inspiring indeed. A true n living example of “where there is a will there is a way”. Hats off to this man for his hard work and salute to his parent for showing their concern for higher education of their children in such community. We are proud of you!

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  • Sep 15, 2011 - 10:53AM

    Mr. Karar was our junior at Balochistan Residential College Loralai but I am a little bit surprised that there is no mention of the institute where he got his early education as a foundation of his educational career… Correct me if I am wrong…

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  • Saad
    Sep 15, 2011 - 10:53AM

    Qarar was our senior at Cadet College Kohat (CCK). He is/was a very talented student back in CCK. He was a very good football players as well I remember. One thing I would like to share with this forum that the whole article has missed his stay of 5 years in CCK which helped him to raise to such great Heights. The vibrant environment and competitiveness in the college triggered into him an energy to accept challenges and radical approach. Allah helped him to reach the best institutions right from the beginning. Our best wishes are with him in the World class Havard university.

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  • Beautiful Soul
    Sep 15, 2011 - 11:23AM

    Utterly Inspirational ” Where there’s will , there’s a way ” fits you , Praise The Lord !

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  • Zarmina
    Sep 15, 2011 - 12:00PM

    Great Job brother, may God reward success for all your future plan.

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  • Muhammad Faisal Bashir
    Sep 15, 2011 - 7:24PM

    Congratulations on your achievements. We are very proud of you. You are the pride of Balochistan and a pride of Pakistan. Long Live Pakistan!

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  • Liaquat Raza
    Sep 15, 2011 - 9:22PM

    Inspiring indeed, well done Karar. wish every boy and girl of Pakistan be Karrar.

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  • faizan abbasi
    Sep 15, 2011 - 11:25PM

    karrar really a high spirited personality boost for all of us who are from these small town of pakistan really admirable personality what i have seen and read. people from these small towns have great potential to be their in worlds top universities or even top companies. it is not just a story its basically motivational tale for all of us, people like karrar and many others can take pakistan on the top just we need is sincerity and devotion in our fields and for the betterment of this all mighty ALLAHS dreamland.LUMS should spread his NOP programs to more remote areas so we could find more jewels like karrar. good job done by editor by bringing this story and telling people about the other face of pakistan

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  • Erum Siddiqui
    Sep 15, 2011 - 11:31PM

    Mashallah, May Allah bless Karrar with every success in life and hereafter (aameen).

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  • hussain ali
    Sep 15, 2011 - 11:37PM

    Dear, brother u r source of inspiration for rest of u r colleagues, so if u want to be repected and remembered u must do something significant for yourself and u r community. I wish and pray for u r bright future.

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  • Sajjad Ahmed
    Sep 16, 2011 - 9:15AM

    I am deeply impressed with your success story. well done. we are proud of you.

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  • ghulam abbas
    Sep 16, 2011 - 1:14PM

    Congratulations! Proud of u karar hussain

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  • mujtaba ali
    Sep 16, 2011 - 4:29PM

    while reading the article i was so excitied and happy that i cannot explain . surely every hazara and every pakistani is proud of you . may u live long

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  • Samiah Hassan
    Sep 16, 2011 - 4:59PM

    This is a truly inspirational story coming at a time when Pakistan is unfortunately really going down. But it shows you how wonderful our younger generation is coming up and there are definitely chances of a better Pakistan one day. Best of luck

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  • Sri Devi Essrani
    Sep 17, 2011 - 2:19AM

    What a inspiring and motivating story……It looks like its just a good luck but this is something real and this could happen in anyone’s life if one is really sincere and trustworthy towards one’s life and studies so anything can happen…And the best part is this that Karrar wants to come back and do something for his people and country, as mostly people when they reach this stage on which he is, they just think about themselves and their life and family…..so i would say him or Karrar that you are doing superb work.

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  • Sep 17, 2011 - 7:30AM

    Amazingly inspiring! Should be a must read for all the youth currently in education and those who have given up!

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  • hafsa ameer
    Sep 17, 2011 - 10:23AM

    hope spreading story…..

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  • Assad Mengal
    Sep 17, 2011 - 11:39AM

    Dear, Karar … You have done some thing great. i paray for your success..

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  • Mohsin
    Sep 17, 2011 - 2:06PM

    I am honored to have a very short interaction with this brilliant gentleman, and am waiting for greater wonders ahead.
    With bit a difference of opinion with phrases “Like most poor people, their aspirations rarely go beyond sustaining themselves …”, just to reiterate that soil of this small locality was and is very much fertile and enabling and is beyond writer’s expectations. All needed is an amicable environment through life’s journey. Lloyd George (Sep 8, 2011 – 2:08PM) is witness.

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  • humbled
    Sep 17, 2011 - 4:21PM

    Mr Karrar, I cried happy tears after reading this. I am so proud of you and so thankful to Allah for all that He’s blessed you with. Please do something for this country as it needs you desperately.

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  • adnan shahidullah
    Sep 17, 2011 - 8:04PM

    he is lucky, not every one get a chance for the LUMS test or things like that…

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  • Abdus Sattar Niazi
    Sep 18, 2011 - 8:38AM

    Karrar,It is a great achievement, and more so, your story is of a great inspiration and beacon of light for those who live in remote areas but yet strive to get the education and be in step with those who achieve excellence.

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  • wali khan
    Sep 18, 2011 - 9:07AM

    v proud of u man such a great achivmnt,, awsm………
    n wish u all the best..

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  • Sep 18, 2011 - 11:25AM

    well done dear karar great job u r the future of pakistan

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  • Saubhagyini Singh
    Sep 18, 2011 - 12:59PM

    Exceptional and inspirational!

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  • maha
    Sep 18, 2011 - 8:29PM

    aoa. that was truely inspiring

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  • Farida Haque
    Sep 18, 2011 - 9:52PM

    It’s a remarkable account of an impassioned journey. And it’s reassuring to know that the Fullbright Scholarship is actually fulfilling it’s purpose, that of enabling academically gifted young people to move towards their full potential and not fall into obscurity for lack of funding. It’s actually not meant for the offspring of affluent elite… Fullbright Selection Panel, please take note. Do the research. Reach out to the deserving.

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  • Ex-Kohatian
    Sep 19, 2011 - 12:23AM

    Truly Inspirational and heart warming…

    but I’ll tell you, that his biggest achievement was not going to Harvard…
    nor Lums….
    These were smaller acheivements….
    these were steps on the ladder….
    the biggest achievement for this boy from Quetta, was the first and foremost difficult challenge of getting into Cadet College Kohat
    now before you mock me, know this….

    Cadet College Kohat is one of the very best colleges in the country, and absolutely one of the best in KP… every year 4500 students appear in its entry test and only 100 are selected…
    the absolute best of the lot….
    the 5 years at CCK strengthens you….. and after F.SC students of CCK go every year to Agha Khan medical college, GIKI, IBA and Lums…
    and then students from these institutes makes it all over the world as we all know…
    true that not everyone goes that far…but a lot do…and once you are in these 4 institutes, then the world is your play field…. CCK enables you to do just that….

    a friend of mine from Dera Ismail Khan almost did the same, went to CCK, topped the inter board, went to GIKI, topped the commonwealth scholarship from Pakistan, went to Lancaster and did his MBA on scholarship and now is back and works in Islamabad…

    still, the achievements of Karar are great… but the best among these is the very first… I am happy to see a Kohatian do so well… we owe it to the great Institute…Recommend

  • Romano
    Sep 19, 2011 - 5:31AM

    Congrats Mr. Karar and valuable future plans BUT be care ful of Terrorists of your area who are out there to eliminate all those whome they dont like. Your community is one of those, unfortunatly. They are just killing even those who served them for decades.

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  • Abdul Hafeez Siddiqui
    Sep 19, 2011 - 10:05PM

    Very incredible, inspirational, and sorrowful but sagacious. His impregnable aspirations steered him through all difficult times and made him stand out. I salute his resolve and ambitions and pray for his future successes and prosperity, and that he may able to harness his capabilities for the benefit of his family, town, province, country and mankind.

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  • Muhammad Faraz
    Sep 20, 2011 - 12:22AM

    I want to be a great,hardworking and brilliant like you…..

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  • Usman
    Sep 20, 2011 - 10:28PM

    Hats off to LUMS for arranging such programmes

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  • Shan Saeed
    Sep 20, 2011 - 11:23PM

    proud of you Karrar.

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  • Anam
    Sep 21, 2011 - 1:40AM

    wow! MashAllah! this is so awe-aspiring….!

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  • Bangash
    Sep 21, 2011 - 1:59AM

    This guy is not coming back to Pakistan.

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  • Daniel Jaffery
    Sep 21, 2011 - 2:21AM

    well written ….

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  • Moeez
    Sep 21, 2011 - 11:49PM

    A Real Fighter ! Keep it up Bro! Pakistan Needs you Son, who is so Talented, Hardworking and Devoted !

    Real Proud of You and Proud to Be a Pakistani!

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  • Mazhar
    Sep 23, 2011 - 12:40AM

    Bravo!

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  • Mubashra
    Sep 23, 2011 - 12:11PM

    The whole nation is so proud of you……..I believe Allah has chosen you because you have the WILL TO DO THINGS and Balochistan is in dire need of someone who can take them out of the miseries. You have set an example for the people belonging to the backward areas of Pakistan that they can do wonders if they work hard and have the will to succeed in life. God bless you!!!

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  • usman Farid
    Sep 23, 2011 - 1:06PM

    Wonderful , Mr. Karrar you are doing a great job. Allah knows better why he selected you may be for strong belief and strong task have to assigned you when back to Balochistan. I advised you dont forget your norms and values and also religious beliefs. Very well done dude we proud of you.

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  • aamir dhedhi
    Sep 23, 2011 - 7:36PM

    @SRK:
    may allah give u power to help others

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  • aamir dhedhi
    Sep 23, 2011 - 8:00PM

    @Rasul Bakhsh my dream is to see my son and and my gardener son to receive same quality education and they have equal apporunties in life

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  • shehryar khan
    Sep 24, 2011 - 10:49PM

    tooo mannyy congratulations to my city boy karrar hussain jaffar….very much inspired you can lift up our province in education to a great higher levels…GOD bless you always always and forever …..AMEEN…

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  • Farhan Qureshi
    Sep 26, 2011 - 6:14AM

    @Khawaja Faraz:
    I am also proud of this boy. May ALLAH SWT make him more successful and honest in his field. We Pakistanis if given a chance can show the world we have brilliant brains in this country.

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  • Engr. Asim Tauqeer
    Sep 26, 2011 - 3:33PM

    Dear,

    I am really impressed to read your motivated story, My message for all student who belong to Baluchistan.

    We are the best and we can do anything possible which is not possible in this world….

    Regards,
    Asim Tauqeer

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  • saba
    Sep 26, 2011 - 10:26PM

    MASHALAAH…..As these days im residing in Balochistan…n i can well understand the hard work done by you….. I wish and pray that u make substantial contribution in the literature ……GOOD LUCK.GOD BLESS U

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  • dhiloo
    Sep 27, 2011 - 2:35AM

    well , it is nice to read about succes story of karar, but i must say that he was the student of cadet college. tell me the story of any pakistani student who had matriculation from Govt. school and Fsc from govt. college and had reached at harvard or oxford….dont male fun of poverty.

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  • Mazhar Iqbal Mahmood
    Sep 27, 2011 - 2:40AM

    I posted this on My Facebook, very inspiring, I was so excited to read about him, that I had goose pimples while reading this. I am from Quetta, Pakistan. Currently in USA. I graduated from IBA. Karachi. Harvard University is Ivy League University, getting admission in it is not a Joke.

    ” Where there’s a will there’s a way. These people from Hazara Tribe living in Quetta Pakistan, are very Hard Working, Passionate, and loyal Citizens.

    Coming from Boluchistan back ground, and getting admission in one of the best University, is a great achievement.

    I wish him good luck, his Goals and inspirations are High. Wish him best of Luck. “

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  • xyz
    Sep 27, 2011 - 8:52AM

    congratulations!!..truely inspirational !! and heart warming,,,,may Allah bless u! ,,,,,,,,,but remember “salam” is not at all the same as” wats up!” in short do follow ur muslim way of life where ever u r :)

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  • Sep 27, 2011 - 4:55PM

    I proud on you , incridible.Recommend

  • Sep 27, 2011 - 4:57PM

    Incredible. please contact me

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  • Saif Ur Rehman
    Sep 29, 2011 - 2:26PM

    My eyes got wet after reading all. You are an asset and hope this asset of Pakistan be an example for all of us. May Allah shower His blessing upon you.

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  • Sep 29, 2011 - 5:29PM

    Damn I almost had a tear in my eye. This really is inspiring. :/

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