Fatima Jinnah - A Tribute

Rizwan Ahmad

I acknowledge with gratitude the kind words said of my sister this evening. Miss Fatima Jinnah is a constant source of help and encouragement to me .... in the days when I was expecting to be taken a prisoner by the British Government, it was my sister who encouraged me and said hopeful things when revolution was staring me in the face.

It was in these words, that the Quaid-i-Azam paid tributes to his sister, who was not only a constant companion to him, but who had devoted all her life to serving the Father of the nation in his great struggle.

After the death of the Quaid's mother, the family shifted to Bombay. Later the Quaid also joined the family at Bombay, after doing his bar from England. Miss Fatima Jinnah was at the time eight years old, but orphaned. The father, Jinnah Poonja, have also passed away. The entire responsibility for the upbringing and education of young Fatima Jinnah therefore, fell upon the shoulders of the Quaid-i-Azam. He treated her like a daughter and gave her the best training and education. First he admitted her to Bandra Convent Boarding House. After a few years she was shifted to Khandia St. Patrick's High School from where she passed her matriculation.

After that Miss Jinnah appeared in the Senior Cambridge Examination as a private candidate and passed that examination also. Young Fatima had an inclination towards medicine. The Quaid-i-Azam therefore, sent her to Dr. Ahmad Dental College in Calcutta, from where she qualified with honour as a dental surgeon after completing the three-year course. When she was at Calcutta, the Quaid-i-Azam used to visit her off and on. When she came back to Bombay, Quaid-i-Azam had a dental clinic set up at Abdur Rehman street. She also used to devote sometime to a charitable clinic at Gurgam Road.

After some years, the Quaid's wife died. Since that time Fatima Jinnah devoted herself wholly to serving her brother and remained with him till his death. She regarded it as her duty to the nation as well. She made it a mission other life.


Dawn, 9 July, 1979.