Long Beach , CA : An evening full of glitz and glitter truly marked the celebration of Safeer e Pakistan 7th award night and gala dinner at the Long Beach Renaissance Hotel on June 18th. This year’s award ceremony took a high benchmark above other events held in the past as over 100 attendees at the event were from outside California.
Several professionals including physicians, business executives, industrialists, scientists, venture capitalists, community leaders and many others participated in the event along with their friends and family from all over the nation.
Safeer e Pakistan is committed to bring the community together and feels that it is important to honor people for their quality efforts and their contributions in building Pakistan’s image and empowering and bringing the communities together. The award night is also one way for Safeer e Pakistan and its management to thank all the patrons, supporters, sponsors, well wishers and friends for being side by side, many of them for over a decade or so for being loyal to Safeer e Pakistan.
This year’s award night was also a special one as it not only recognized individuals from all over the United States of America but as well from other parts of the world.
Local attendees included honorable Consul General of Pakistan Mrs. Riffat Masood, Consul Dr. Khalid Aijaz, Congresswoman Judy Chu from 32nd District of California, representatives from congressman Brad Sherman Office, renowned Philanthropists and community activists Dr. Meher Tabatabai, Syed Qaisar Madad, Dr. Khalid Ahmed and Parveen Ahmed, several prominent community members from Southern California and members of several organizations and media representatives from Los Angeles, Houston and New York area attended the event.
Fatima Khan, program director of Safeer e Pakistan, was the emcee of the evening. After welcoming the guests and recognizing the presence of the dignitaries and guests of honor, the ceremony started with a recitation from the Holy Qur’an by young Faisal Qasim, followed by a flag procession by students of California State University, Fullerton. National anthem of both Pakistan and United States were played and renowned pop icon of Pakistan Mohammed Ali Shyakhi, who was invited as the celebrity guest of the evening, presented his famous patriotic number Main Bhi Pakistan Hoon and the audience joined him by clapping and cheering.
Congresswoman Judy Chu was invited next to deliver her address to the audience. Dr. Judy Chu is a very close friend of the Pakistani community and is always present at every event she is invited . In her speech, she praised the role that Safeer e Pakistan is playing to keep the community informed and provide a platform to everyone to express their views, opinions and share their concern with the community around the nation. She expressed her gratitude to the ethnic media, especially South Asian media, and stated that her victory in Congressional elections was made possible by diversified communities like the Pakistani, and media outlets of the community. She said Geo TV program Safeer e Pakistan is building bridges between Pak American community. Dr. Chu presented a congressional certificate to Safeer e Pakistan’s Executive Producer Waqar Ali Khan to recognize his efforts in promoting Pakistan and playing a vital role in Pakistan’s image building.
Consul General Mrs. Riffat Masood who spoke next, also praised the efforts of Waqar Ali Khan for bringing Safeer e Pakistan week after week to the community around the nation. She told the audience that Safeer e Pakistan not only plays a vital role in bringing the community together through its platform but also plays a key role in informing the community about the happenings within the community and around the nation. She said that she appreciated the positive involvement of Pakistani-Americans in the mainstream American society through community-based organizations and media like Safeer-e-Pakistan, and help to positively improve the perspective about Pakistan. She said that this program should not air only once a week but every day.
Dr. Meher Tabatabai, a renowned infectious disease specialist and a community leader, spoke next. In her speech she also praised the efforts and the role Safeer e Pakistan is playing in the community and for being a voice of Pakistani Americans. She encouraged the audience to come forward and support Safeer e Pakistan for all it is doing for the community.
After her speech representative from Congressman Brad Sherman’s office presented an American flag to Mr. Waqar Khan, which was flown over the US Capitol in recognition of his services to the community. The award ceremony followed later.
This year’s awardees included Dr. Asif Mahmood as Man of the Year, (CA): Dr. Khalid Mahmood as Physician of the Year, (TX); Dr. Nafees Nagy of Nevada for life time achievement; Jamal Khawaja as the Entrepreneur of the Year (CA); JFK Realty as Company of the Year (CA); Dr. Waqas Bukhari as Healthcare Visionary (CA); Muhammad Munir Akhtar as Industrialist of the Year (IL); Dr. Arjumand Hashmi, for Pride of Performance, (TX); Dr. Sattar Abbasi for Pride of Performance, (CA); Ibad Rehman as the most influential person and community activist in Washington DC; Dr. Shaukat Bangash for Healthcare in Pakistan; Hanadi Nadeem for community service (NV); M. Tahir Javed, as Businessman of the Year, (TX); Saeed Sheikh for community service, (TX); Dr. Joseph Agris for Humanitarian Service (TX) ; Suleman Hashmi as Youth of the Year, (TX); Khurshid Qureshi, in Innovation & Technology, (MI); Talat Rashid for Leadership & Community Service, (IL); Faiyaz Merchant for Pride of Performance, (TX); Dr. Tahir Akhtar, Pride of Performance in Global Business, Dubai; Mir Ali for Community Service, (IL); Dr. Naseem Malik for Professional Achievement, (CA): Pakistan News for Media of the Year, (CA); Rashid Memon, Pride of Performance, (CA); Randy Diehl in Education (TX); Malika Chughtai for Community Service, Washington DC: Shine Humanity, NGO of the Year, Tariq Nizami for Global Outreach, Dubai. Also, congressional recognition certificates were presented to Pakistan Link and Urdu Times for their tireless efforts in media from the office of Congresswoman Chu.
The major sponsors of the event were JFK Realty, Dr. Nafees Nagi, Dr. Waqas Bukhari, M. Tahir Javaid, Dr. Nasim Malik, Dr. Arjumand Hashmi, D. Hasan Hashmi, and Mr. Munir Akhtar of RNA Corporation, (IL). The event venue was full to capacity and was well organized and planned. It was planned and coordinated by Fatima Khan with the assistance of her close community friends. The management and staff of Safeer e Pakistan thank all those from Southern California who supported the event and made it possible despite the hectic month of June. Sumptuous catering was provided by Dara Khan of Shahnawaz Halal Tandoori Restaurant. The gorgeous, elegant décor was done by young Eraj Shamsi of Rtikulit Events and venue arrangement was made possible by Nusrat Mirza, general manager of the hotel. Safeer e Pakistan would like to thank Mr. Naeem Akhtar and M. Sharif of Digital Impression for capturing the moments of this year’s award night for photography.
Safeer e Pakistan is a leading television program that started in 1997 on a national television network and is currently airing on GEO Television Network since the last six years and has completed 14 years of broadcast on television screen. Safeer e Pakistan always encourages all community members all over the nation to be a part of this platform by sending their news, stories and event coverage to be aired in the program.