Dr. Mehdi Hasan, a professor of mass communication, died on Wednesday at the age of 85 after a long illness.
His wife Rakhshanda Hasan, sons, grandchildren, brothers, nieces, nephews, and tens of thousands of students survive him.
Dr Hasan was a Pakistani left-wing journalist, media historian, dean of journalism and mass communication at Beaconhouse National University, and professor of mass communication at Punjab University. He was awarded the most prestigious award in Pakistan, the Sitara-i-Imtiaz, by the President of Pakistan in 2012 for his services in journalism. His career as a teacher stretched more than 50 years.
He was the chairperson of Pakistan’s Human Rights Commission (HRCP) and one of the country’s most distinguished communication professionals, specialising in political analysis.
Dr Hasan was a popular analyst and panellist for TV news channels and radio stations, and he was one of Pakistan’s few media historians.
Aside from that, he wrote a number of books on history, journalism, mass media, and political parties. Journalists and producers frequently cite his book “The Political History of Pakistan” as a source of information.
His long-held personal belief was that “the media distortion of facts distorts our past.”
Furthermore, Dr. Hasan published numerous articles on the subject and took part in numerous seminars.
Punjab University awarded him a PhD in mass communication as well as an MA in journalism. He studied “Coverage of Third World Countries in the American Mass Media” while a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Colorado. In the United States and Pakistan, he authored research publications.
Between 1961 to 1967, he worked as a sub-editor and reporter for Pakistan Press International. During this time, he was chosen office-bearer of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) five times.
Since 1964, Dr Hasan has worked as a news commentator and analyst for Pakistani television, as well as for Radio Pakistan since 1962.
Aside from that, national and international news organisations such as Voice of America, BBC News, and Deutsche Welle also sought his perspective on Pakistani political happenings. He submitted articles to all of Pakistan’s leading publications.
Photography was one of his interests and passions, and he owned 35mm cameras, including a couple of Rolleiflex cameras. Despite the fact that he was not a professional photographer, his enthusiasm for photography led him to the frontlines of the Lahore war zone in 1965.