In Pakistan, it is rare that people privy to political history in making pen down their memories. Bureaucrats are one such people. Not only do they witness some key events in the history of a nation but play important roles in some of them. Yet, their contribution to the written word in our troubled history is negligible and any addition to it always helps us see it anew.
Syed Munir Husain’s memoirs Surviving The Wreck: A Civil Servant’s Personal History Of Pakistan is no exception. During his illustrious career, Husain held important positions at some critical junctures in the history of Paksitan. He was the Information Secretory West pakistan during the 1965 Indo – Pak War and served as Director General Radio Pakistan for a long time after the war. He was the Chief Administrator Malakand Division when the merger of Swat state took place. He held the important position of Managing Director Paksitan Television Corporation during the East Paksitan debacle and the 1971 Indo – Pak War. Bhutto appointed him the Chief Secretary balochistan where he palyed a reconciliatory role in the Marri tribe insurgency. He was NWFP’s Chief Secretary when General Zia ousted Bhutton and imposed martial law. Junejo mad him the information Secreatry Pakistan to Zia’s utter disliking.
Husain has much to say about the events that took place during his tenure as a civil servant and casts new light on the characters of movers and shakers of his time.