Pakistani Canadian cultural activist Nafees Ghaznavi passed away in Pickering Ontario this July 7.
Nafees consistently supported initiatives for equality and human rights. In Toronto in the Eighties he was actively involved in South Asian Resources and Information (SARI) with Himani Bannerji, Poonam Khosla, Krisantha Sri Bhaggiyadatta, Judy Whitehead and others. During the Nineties, he moved back to Karachi where he continued to work for democratic change.
Nafees came to visit Canada to meet with friends earlier this month. However, he was living in a motel in Pickering, and died alone following a cardiac arrest. His body was found six days after his death.
Nafees was an advertising genius, and was instrumental in establishing Pakistan’s MNJ advertising company. Later, he went into travel business. He was a former editor of Canadian Asian News.
His neighbour in Karachi, Dancer/Activist Sheema Kermani, says this about him:
‘Nafees Ghaznavi was a wonderful human being, always a great supporter of the oppressed, supporter of all Left causes and a great supporter of my work and of Tehrik-e-Niswan. He was always there to help in any way he could. He was not just a personal friend but a great moral support as well. We will miss him.’
Nafees was laid to rest in Pickering Cemetery Tuesday July 12.
Nafees Bhai, we will see you soon.