Edhi, the man, the idea

Published April 22, 2016
Abdul Sattar Edhi sits in his office. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi sits in his office. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi waves as he journeys to his office in Karachi. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi waves as he journeys to his office in Karachi. – AFP
Bilquis Edhi, wife of Abdul Sattar Edhi, sits at her charity office in Karachi. 
 – AFP
Bilquis Edhi, wife of Abdul Sattar Edhi, sits at her charity office in Karachi. – AFP
Orphaned children study the Holy Quran at the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. 
 – AFP
Orphaned children study the Holy Quran at the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. – AFP
A staff member plays with an abandoned child at a welfare office of the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. 
  – AFP
A staff member plays with an abandoned child at a welfare office of the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. – AFP
Orphaned children play at the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. 
 – AFP
Orphaned children play at the Edhi Foundation in Karachi. – AFP
Faisal Edhi, son of Abdul Sattar Edhi, speaks in his office in Karachi. 
 – AFP
Faisal Edhi, son of Abdul Sattar Edhi, speaks in his office in Karachi. – AFP
A motorcyclist (R) pays his respects to Abdul Sattar Edhi (2nd L), as he travels to his office in Karachi. 
 – AFP
A motorcyclist (R) pays his respects to Abdul Sattar Edhi (2nd L), as he travels to his office in Karachi. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi speaks with his wife Bilquis Edhi in his office in  Karachi.  – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi speaks with his wife Bilquis Edhi in his office in Karachi. – AFP
An orphaned child pays her respects to Bilquis Edhi(R) at her charity office in Karachi.  – AFP
An orphaned child pays her respects to Bilquis Edhi(R) at her charity office in Karachi. – AFP
Faisal Edhi speaks on the telephone in his office Karachi.  – AFP
Faisal Edhi speaks on the telephone in his office Karachi. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi sits with his wife Bilquis Edhi outside his office in Karachi. 
 – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi sits with his wife Bilquis Edhi outside his office in Karachi. – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi(2nd L) is assisted by staff as he arrives at his office in Karachi.
 – AFP
Abdul Sattar Edhi(2nd L) is assisted by staff as he arrives at his office in Karachi. – AFP

KARACHI: He created a charitable empire out of nothing, masterminding Pakistan's largest welfare organisation. Abdul Sattar Edhi is revered by many as a national hero.

Content with just two sets of clothes, he slept in a windowless room of white tiles adjoining the office of his charitable foundation. Sparsely equipped: it had just one bed, a sink and a hotplate.

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