Mushtaq Ahmad Yusufi or Mushtaq Ahmed Yousufi D.Litt (HC), SI, HI (Urdu:مشتاق احمد يوسفی) is an outstanding Urdu satirical and humor writer from Pakistan regarded by many as best Urdu Humorist. Yousufi has also served as the head of several national and international governmental and financial institutions. He received Sitara-e-Imtiaz and Hilal-i-Imtiaz, the highest literary honors by Government of Pakistan in 1999.
Early life and education
Yousufi was born in a learned family of Tonk
on August 4
. His father Abdul Karim Khan Yousufi was chairman of the Jaipur
Municipality, and later Speaker of the Jaipur Legislative Assembly. Yousufi completed his early education in Rajputana and earned B.A.
University while M.A. Philosophy
from Aligarh University
. After partition of India
his family migrated to Karachi
Married Idrees Fatima - an Urdu teacher and daughter of Manzoor Ahmed Khan, former District and Session Judge of India. Has two sons and two daughters; Arshad, Sarosh, Rukhsana and Seema.
Joined Muslim Commercial Bank
in 1950, became Deputy General Manager
. Joined Allied Bank
Ltd in 1965 as Managing Director
. In 1974 he became President
of United Bank
Ltd. In 1977 became Chairman of the Pakistan Banking Council. Awarded Quaid-i-Azam
Memorial Medal for distinguished services in banking.
- Chiragh talay (1961)
- Khakam-ba-dahan (1969)
Yousufi Sahib's second book was Khakam ba dahan (Dust in my mouth) which was published in 1969 and dedicated to his wife, Idrees Fatema. So far 14 editions of this book have been printed. It has eight articles, in addition to a foreword written by the author.
Yousufi's third book was Zarguzasht which was published in 1976. It has 11 articles in addition to the foreword, 'Tuzk-i-Yousufi'.
His fourth book, Aab-i-gum, was published in 1990. Dedicated to his children, Arshad, Sarosh, Rukhsana and Seema, it runs into 404 pages and has five articles, in addition to the foreword.
First two won Adamjee Prize, while last one got the Hijra Award as well as Pakistan Academy of Letters Award for best book, 1990. Awarded Sitara-i-Imtiaz and Hilal-i-Imtiaz.
A few lines from his book:
"...No sooner had I received the salary, I bought grocery and other items for the household so that the dog I had brought home could guard these items. For us parents I pointed out the advantage of having a dog by submitting that after all it was an Englishman's dog... even an illiterate person in our country gives an English name to his dog and always calls him or reprimands him in English, therefore, it was obvious that because of this dog our children would learn English!"
"...it's better to write one's own foreword (meaning foreword on one's own book) for then, others are saved from telling lies... there is another advantage: the foreword writer picks up the pen after reading the book!"
Penning his own sketchy sketch Yousufi informs us about his date of birth: "I have reached the stage in life when in case someone wants to know my date of birth, I confuse him by providing him my telephone number!"
About his likes and dislikes: "I like Ghalib, Hawkes Bay and okra (bhindi). I like the smell of newly printed currency notes. For a pet I like dogs. The first dog I had was for chowkidari. It was stolen! Now I have a dog for a different reason. That is, dog is man's best friend! Mussalmans have a logic behind their dislike for dogs... they do not like animals which they cannot eat!... I love music, therefore, I don't listen to the radio... I don't like emotional men and unemotional women..."
"Okay, if you insist, let me tell you that I was born on August 4, 1923 and it was a premature birth! My ancestors were Yusufzai Pathans settled in Jaipur. When my father visited Peshawar and introduced himself as a Pathan Yusufzai, everyone laughed. He returned to Jaipur and stopped calling himself a Yusufzai or a Pathan. However, he gave the family a new name - Yousufi!"
Critics and contemporaries
, himself a great Urdu satirist and humourist, wrote about Yousufi Sahib: "...if ever we could give a name to the literary humour of our time, then the only name that comes to mind is that of Yousufi!"
Another scholar, Dr Zaheer Fatehpuri, wrote, "We are living in the 'Yousufi era' of Urdu literary humour..."The Yousufi era started from 1961 when Yousufi Sahib's first book Chiragh talay was published. So far 11 editions of this book have appeared. It has a foreword titled 'Pahla pathhar' written by the author himself plus 12 satirical and humorous articles. In 2008, he is living in Karachi and often appeared in TV programs as well as seminars.