KARACHI: Former journalist and social activist, Naushaba Burney, passed away on Thursday. She was 83.
According to her sister, Oxford University Press managing director Ameena Saiyid, Burney was hospitalised on Wednesday after suffering from a pneumonia infection. An asthma attack on Thursday ended her life at South City Hospital.
Before she fell sick, Burney was teaching English to students at a school in Korangi. She was also the vice-president of an NGO, Pakistan Women’s Foundation for Peace.
A student of journalism from the University of California, Berkeley, she also taught journalists at the University of Karachi. “Many journalists were trained by her,” said Saiyid.
Burney headed Humsafar, an inflight magazine of the Pakistan International Airlines and then went to work at Dawn newspaper for a few years in the 1990s. At Dawn, she headed the Sunday Magazine, Tuesday Review, and also headed the health pages.
She was married to journalist Iqbal Hassan Burney, editor of English weekly Outlook, which was banned by the Zulfikar Ali Bhutto government.
Former Dawn editor Saleem Asmi remembered her to be a good writer. Her former colleague, and a journalist at Dawn, Humair Ishtiaq called her an untiring worker. “The causes close to her heart were reflected in the magazine she produced,” he said.
Journalist and educationist Zubeida Mustafa recalled the last time she met Burney was at a conference in December held to commemorate 40 years of SIUT. “When she came to know that I was one of the speakers, she called me and asked me about it. She came and attended it.”
Mustafa remembers her as a woman with a lot of courage. They worked together at Dawn in the mid-90s. “I was closest to her at Dawn. She was a fine person and a very good friend of mine.”
Published in The Express Tribune, February 12th, 2016