Pakistan's new President is connected to Jawaharlal Nehru. Read how!
Pakistan's newly-elected President Dr. Arif Alvi shares an interesting connection with India as his father was a dentist to India's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, according to the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party. Alvi, 69, a close ally of Prime Minister Imran Khan and one of the founding members of the PTI, was elected as the 13th President of Pakistan yesterday. Here's more.
Letters between Nehru, Alvi's father kept by Alvi's family
Alvi's father Dr. Habib ur Rehman Elahi Alvi was a dentist to Nehru before partition, according to a short biography of the new President on the website of the ruling PTI party. "Dr. Elahi Alvi was a dentist to Jawaharlal Nehru and the family has letters from Mr. Nehru to Dr. Alvi in their possession," according to the PTI website.
Alvi has another connection with India
Alvi defeated Pakistan Peoples Party's candidate Aitzaz Ahsan and the Pakistan Muslim League-N nominee Maulana Fazl ur Rehman yesterday. Being a son of Nehru's dentist isn't the only connection that Alvi has with India. He is yet another President whose family migrated to Pakistan from India after partition. His predecessors Mamnoon Hussain's family came from Agra and Pervez Musharraf's parents migrated from New Delhi.
Alvi's father was also connected to the Jinnah family
President Alvi, whose full name is Dr. Arif ur Rehman Alvi, was born in Karachi in 1949 where his father settled after partition. He inherited the profession of a dentist from his father who practiced dentistry in India before partition and opened a dental practice in Saddar, Karachi after migration. His father was also connected to the Jinnah family.
Alvi protested against former-leader Ayub Khan during his college days
Alvi started his political career about five-decades ago when he was a student of de Montmorency College of Dentistry in Lahore. He was part of students' wing of Jamaat-i-Islami (JIH) and protested against military ruler Ayub Khan. "During one of the protests in Lahore, he was shot at and wounded, and still proudly carries a bullet embedded in his right arm," says PTI's website.
Alvi's first ever election was in 1979
Alvi participated in elections from the JIH in 1979 but lost. Later he became disillusioned with the JIH politics and joined the PTI as one of its founders in 1996. He also helped in writing the Constitution of the new party. Alvi contested his first election for PTI in 1997 but lost. His affiliation with PTI continued and he steadily rose in its ranks.
Apart from politics, Alvi is also a professional dentist
The new President is married to Samina Alvi and the couple has four children. Alvi acquired his dental degree BDS (Dentistry) from de Montmorency College of Dentistry and Master of Science degree in Prosthodontics from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in 1975 and Master of Science in Orthodontics in 1984 from University of the Pacific, San Francisco.
Alvi is also the President of the Pakistan Dental Association
In 1997, Alvi was declared a Diplomat of the American Board of Orthodontics. He was the primary author of the constitution of the Pakistan Dental Association and has been elected the President of the Pakistan Dental Association.