Pakistani scholar dies in US quietly after decades of service

Published April 22, 2020
Born in 1930 in Lahore, Dr Hafeez Malik was Professor Emeritus of political science at Villanova University, Pennsylvania. — Photo courtesy via US embassy website
Born in 1930 in Lahore, Dr Hafeez Malik was Professor Emeritus of political science at Villanova University, Pennsylvania. — Photo courtesy via US embassy website

WASHINGTON: Prof Hafeez Malik, a scholar, social activist and a torch-bearer of the Pakistani-American community, passed away at his home in Radnor, Pennsylvania, on Monday. He was 90.

“Deeply saddened to hear about Dr Malik’s demise. A renowned academic & devoted researcher, he played a key role in promoting Pakistan in this country,” said Dr Asad Majeed Khan, Pakistan’s ambassador in Washington. “We celebrated his enormous contributions to promoting Pak-US education cooperation last year at the Embassy.”

“Hafeez Malik was one of the founders of American Institute of Pakistan Studies (AIPS), a pivotal organization in enhancing scholarship about Pakistan,” said Prof Farhat Ihsan, the institute’s current president. “He will be greatly missed.”

Born in 1930 in Lahore, Dr Malik was Professor Emeritus of political science at Villanova University, Pennsylvania. An authority on Pakistan, South Asian, Middle Eastern affairs, Prof. Malik authored more than a dozen books. He was also an authority on Allama Iqbal and his poetry.

After a high school education at Mission High School, Lahore, he graduated from Government College, Lahore, in 1949. After a year in law college, Mr. Malik came to the US as a student at Syracuse University, where he completed a double master’s in journalism and international relations, and then a Ph.D. in political science in 1960.

In 1961, Dr. Malik joined Villanova University. From 1961 to 1963, and from 1966 to 202, he was a visiting professor at the Foreign Service Institute of the US State Department.

From 1971 to 1974, he was president of the Pakistan Council of Asia Society, New York; director (1973–1988) of the American Institute of Pakistan Studies; and president of the Pakistan-American foundation.

Since 1977, he has been the editor of the Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Villanova University). In 1992, Prof. Malik (along with Dr. Sakhawat Hussain) founded the Pakistan-American Congress, and then served as the chairman of its advising council.

Upon request of the State Department, he visited Russia from June 4-6, 2002 to explain the US foreign policy toward the Muslims in general and the Muslim republics in particular, especially in Tartarstan and Bashkortostan within the Russian Federation.

Published in Dawn, April 22nd, 2020

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