Ali Sufyan Afaqi - A Man Of Many Gifts

Qasim Khan Lahore

An institute himself, Mr. Ali Sufyan Afaqi (b: 22 August 1933 - d: 27 January 2015) has inspired generations of journalists/story writers and travelogue writers to aspire for the highest standards of professional excellence. 

Born in Sehore District of central Indian Muslim majority state of Bhopal, Ali Sufyan Afaqi got his early education from Bhopal and Mairath and finally from Lahore.

He did his B.A. (Hons) and started his journalistic career in 1951 as he joined daily “Tasneem” of Jammat-e-Islami Pakistan. From there he moved to explore new horizons of the profession of his choice and won a seat in weekly “Chttan” and after that he got himself associated with daily Nawa-I-waqt. Afterwards he moved to Daily “Afaq”. It was the very first coming of daily “Afaq” under the auspices of Mir Noor Ahmed and under the Editorship of Professor Sarwar. There he started first ever film review in a daily on regular basis. 

The first phase of “Afaq” proved very short. However after the laps of sometime, it emerged once again and Ali Sufyan Afaqi joined it as assistant editor. This time “Afaq” saw the day light under the editorship of Moulana Ghulam Rasool Meher. It is from “Afaq” That he derives his nom de plume “Afaqi”.

He was appointed Editor of weekly Aqwam of Meem Sheen. Moulana Akhtar Ali Khan’s son and Moulana Zafar Ali Khan’s grandson, Mansoor Ali Khan, after the closure of “Zimindar”, started daily “Aasar” and Mr. Afaqi was appointed joint editor.

Ali Sufyan Afaqi was a seasoned columnist. His columns covered a whole arena of social, political and cultural activities of our society. He used to write columns for “Afaq”, “Nawa-I-waqt”, “Amrooz”, “Ehsan”and “Jang” under the titles of “Dam-e-Khayal” and “Dareechey”.

In 1957 he made his first ever movie “Thandi Sarak” in collaboration with Shabab Kiranvi. A hail and hearty comedy, “Thandi Sarak” was an instant hit. The story, dialogues and scenes were conceived and written by Ali Sufyan Afaqi.

In 1958 Martial Law was imposed in the country. Dejected Mr. Afaqi left journalism and joined film industry full time.

Director / producer Hassan Tariq was maiking a film” Jangli” that was to be shot in East Pakistan’s Sundar Bun. Mr. Afaqi’s services were hired for the script writing. This movie failed to be on the silver screen due to some unavoidable reasons. In the same year he wrote dialogues and scenes of “Ayyaz” and “Aadmi” and adopted Dostoevsky’s 

“Crime And Punishment “ as “Farishta”.

Year 1965 welcomed Mr. Afaqi as film producer and he made “Kaneez” in association with Hassan Tariq. The story of “Kaneez” was a product of Mr.Afaqi’s fertile imagination. Afterwards the team of two produced “Mera Ghar Meri Jannat”.

Mr. Afaqi took a solo flight and produced “Saza” in witch he introduced a new couple Jameel and Rozeena.

In 1972 he made another movie “Aass” as writer, director and producer. 

He has a number of movies to his credit as producer/director and storywriter.

Thandi Sarak, Ayyaz ,.Aadmi , Farishta ,Aaj kal, Joker, Qatal Key Baad, Aik hi Rasta, Aasra,sawal, Adalat, Shikwa, Diwangi, Fasila, Aar Par, Kabhi Alwida na kehna, Naiya Safar, Main Wo Nahin, Andleeb, Merey Hamsafar, Meharbani, Gumnam, Bandagi, Kamyabi, Ham aur Tum, Saaiqa, Play Boy, Miss Colombo, Daman aur Chingari, Dewar Bhabi, Dil Aik Aaina , Mohabat, Ilzam, Intizar, Insaniat, dosti, Namak Haram, Beta, Moamla Gar Bar Hai, Very good Dyunia Very Bad Log.

His movies “Aass”, “Ajnabi” and “Saaiqa” were nominated and sent to Tashkent film Festival and dubbed in many local languages of Russia.

He participated in International Film Festival as delegate from Pakistan. The Festival was held in 1987 in Honolulu.

He was a member of National Film Award Jury for the years 1988, 1989, 1990, and 1991.

He was a member of Agfa-Gevaert Film Award Jury, Member Rotary club Lahore Garrison, Life Time Member of East and West Institute America, Chairperson Pakistan Film Writers’ Association (five Times), Vice Chairman Pakistan Film Producer’s Association, Life Time Member Pakistan Film Journalist’s Association, Life Time Member Pakistan Film Producer’s Association and  Life Time Member Lahore Press Club

As a tribute to his meritorious services for Pakistan Film Industry, he has been honored with many prestigious awards including Nigar Award 8 Times, Graduate Award 6 Times, Film Critic Award 1, Mussawir Award 1

Mr. Ali Sufyan Afaqi is a prolific writer yet his pen never scratched a sentence that may be marked as unscrupulous or inartistic. His lucid and fluent style of expression has won him a prestigious and honorable place among the fraternity of authors. To his credit, there are more then 28 books.

The list goes as below:

Kamndain (Satirical and comic Articles)

Biography of Syed Abuulala Modoodi

Siasi Batain (Interviews of Politicians and Intellectuals)

Siasi Log (Interviews of Politicians and Intellectuals)

Dekh Lia America (Travelogue)

Zara Inglistan Tak(Travelogue)



Khwabon Ki sarzamin(Travelogue)

Neel Kinarey(Travelogue)

Europe Ki Alif Laila(Travelogue)


Goriyoun Ka Des (Travelogue)

Europe Ka Koh-e Kaf(Travelogue)

Paris Ki Galiyan(Travelogue)

Muhammad Ali Jinnah

Shola Nawa Shorash Kashmiri

Aalmi Dimagh-Saifuddin Saif

Sahir Ludhyanvi

Chand Chehrey(I)

Chand Chehrey(II)

Safar Nama-e-Turkey 

Safar Nama-e-Iran

Safar Nama-e- Thailand

Safar Nama-e- Sri Lanka

Safar Nama-e- Spain

Sur Chaya Medam Noor Jehan.

And last but not the least his masterpiece Filmi Alif Laila. Aliflaila is a personal history of the Pakistani film industry by a gifted storyteller. Mr. Afaqi has performed a real service by writing an entertaining and insightful, albeit brief, account of his time in the film industry.