Renowned composer Ustad Ghulam Haider Khan passes away, aged 85

Music scholar succumbed to multiple illnesses on Tuesday

Adnan Lodhi June 25, 2019

LAHORE: Renowned musician, composer and classical singer Ustad Ghulam Haider Khan passed away in Lahore on Tuesday, after multiple prolonged illnesses. He was 85 years of age.

Khan lived in the Begum Kot area of Lahore. He was a musician primarily but remained out of the limelight. Instead, he penned six books in his career. These were about music too, though, as he was very well-read in the topic.

The singer was popularly known as ‘Fakhar-e-Moseequi’ (Pride of Music) within the Pakistani music industry because of the knowledge he had of music and the musical gharanas of Pakistan. In fact, his USP was this knowledge of the history of classical music in the sub-continent that he imparted to others as their ustaad. He had himself been taught by Ustaad Fateh Ali Khan – the father of the late qawwal Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan.


Khan was the son of Ustad Sadiq Ali and they both served at Radio Pakistan at some point in their careers. In fact, the former also worked at PTV and his presence in the local music scene will be dearly missed.

“Ustad Ghulam Haider Khan was among those who supervised classical music in Pakistan. He struggled his whole life to promote it in Pakistan. He was a close friend and I learned a lot from him… a pure music scholar. His death is a huge loss for us,” Ustaad Baksh Gullo told The Express Tribune. Folk singer Shoukat Ali added, “I cannot put into words how big a loss this is. He was a real asset, a man of both knowledge and a good heart.”

The funeral for Khan was on Tuesday evening in Lahore, after Maghreb prayers.

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