[Syafiqah (left) with Murtaza and his daughter in the Thar Desert. Photograph: Liyana Low]
When a classmate and I arrived in Pakistan for a journalism internship in early
2010, we were greeted not only by the cold winter wind but bewildering sights
and sounds. We were two 21-year-old female students, far from home.
Fortunately, we found the perfect host and mentor. Murtaza Razvi put us up
in his house for more than a week while we searched for an apartment. His lovely
wife and beautiful daughters had also proved to be great company.
This won’t surprise others in the AJF Class of 2009. I’m told that Murtaza was
always the one organising parties and cooking up fancy meals for the Fellows.
His kept up his sense of hospitality when he returned to Pakistan. He helped
to create internship opportunities at the Dawn group for journalism students
from the Wee Kim Wee School.
That’s how my classmate Liyana Low and I ended up gaining six months of
valuable work experience at Dawn.
Although we did not report to Murtaza (we were posted to Dawn.com, the
news website), we still went to him constantly for advice.
Besides introducing us to other people in the industry, he also took us on our
first trip out of Karachi, a five-hour drive out to the Thar Desert to experience
Pakistan’s rural village life.
We returned to Singapore not only with a portfolio of bylines but, more
importantly, many good memories and friendships.
Article by Syafiqah Omar