Pervaiz Masih

It was a pleasant winter morning and the people of Pakistan were about to start their day, unaware of the catastrophe which was about to hit. At around 9.00 AM the northern part of Pakistan was jolted by severe earthquake tremors.

On that very day Fireman Pervaiz was on leave. He was enjoying breakfast with his family at home when an earthquake of 7.6 magnitudes jolted Pakistan including Islamabad. As soon as terrifying tremors subsided Pervaiz rushed to turn his old radio on. The first heart piercing news that he heard were of the collapse of Margalla Towers in F-10 sector. It was very difficult moment for Pervaiz to decide between staying with his kids in that time of terror or rush to the tragic scene and try to save the precious lives, a mission that had let him to join fire brigade department of Capital Development Authority. He waited for a few second and then suddenly rushed to the scene in a bid to honour his mission for which he had left his native land.

Enroute to Margalla Towers, He stopped at his office, took important equipment and went to the site along with his colleagues. He reached there within 30 minutes of collapse and immediately started rescue efforts with limited resources. When the operation ended, he had saved 17 lives from the rubble of collapsed Margalla Towers and recovered 84 dead bodies. With such limited resources, it was not less than a miracle.

Pervaiz Masih was born on 30th November, 1967 in village Gakka Mitter Tehsil Wazirabad. His father Rehmat Masih was a poor tenant and did not know that one day his new born baby would perform heroic deeds. Pervaiz was enrolled in village school from where he did his matriculation.  During his study he used to help his father in the fields after school hours. As a child, he was kind in nature and always ready to help others.  After matriculation, he decided not to adopt his father’s profession and came to Islamabad in search of job. In 1990, he joined the Capital Development Authority (CDA) as a fireman. On the day of joining his joy was worth watching as his dream of serving humanity came true. From that day onward he has participated in almost all rescue operations, not only in Islamabad but also in Rawalpindi and saved the lives and property of many people.

Pervaiz,  a very dynamic person and always keen to learn something new relating to his field, during his career spanning on 21 years, has attended quite a few courses to achieve professional excellence. In addition to professional trainings he received in Pakistan, he has also done training courses from Japan, Finland and England to strengthen his professional capabilities.

His major achievement was the rescue operation during the earthquake of 2005. His selfless effort of that day  were appreciated by everyone and in recognition of his efforts, he was awarded a shield by the then Prime Minister of Pakistan. His services have also been appreciated not only by his department but also by other departments through various shields and awards.

Nowadays Pervaiz is working as an instructor to share the professional knowledge he has gained over the years, not only with his junior colleagues but with other people also.

Vibrant nations do not forget their heroes and try to recognize and remember the deeds rendered by them. It is most unfortunate to see that we tend to forget and sometimes overlook the selfless deeds performed by ordinary people from within us. If someone performs such endeavours then these should be appropriately appreciated. Although Pervaiz is working as an Instructor but his actual rank is still that of a Fireman and he awaits for his formal promotion.

During his interview with the DART Team, he shared that saving a human life and the feelings of happiness and satisfaction over it make one’s life worth living.