Women's Activism NYC

Nazia Hassan

1965 - 2000

By: Asha Kapadia | Date Added:

Nazia Hassan was born on April 3rd 1965 and passed on August 13th 2000. She was born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan and London for some time too. Her parents, Basir Hassan and Muniza Basir, were businessman and active social worker respectively. She has a brother and sister where they all became singers. Nazia started her singing career at a young age of ten and eventually earned her Bachelor’s in Business Administration and Economics at Richmond American University in London. She later earned her law degree at London University. Nazia in her short life was a Pakistani pop singer and songwriter who soon was a strong social activist as well. Nazia was a child artist who started singing in the 1970s and appeared on several television shows in Pakistan. Her professional singing career started when she was fifteen years old when she sang, “Aap Jaisa Koi” for the Bollywood film, “Qurbani”. The song was a huge success despite her being Pakistani and she won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Playback. Nazia continued to work with Biddu, Indian music composer based in London who worked with her on her debut. She became the first playback singer to release an album which she had great success in Pakistan and India. Next year, she was nominated for the same award during her second album, “Star/Boom Boom”. In 1984, her third album was released and she was one of the first to have a music video in Pakistan. During the 1980s, Nazia had reached new heights in fame and by 1991 she declared her last album and never went back to singing while others try to persuade her to return. Nazia was very engaged in social activism. She utilized her platform to help the youth and women who lived in underprivilege lives. She also established, Battle Against Narcotics (BAN) and became a member of Voice of Women and National Youth Organization. She was also credited for introducing mobile clinics to poverty towns who are deprived and in need. In addition, she would visit schools to provide toys and do lectures to provide awareness of the social problems that are occurring. She even used her education to join the United Nations Security Council in New York City and worked there for two years. Thereafter she worked with UNICEF. She was an inspirational woman due to her greatness in singing, her big heart, and passion which made her who she was. It was unfortunate that someone so young with her attributes has to pass from cancer. She was a big influencer in Pakistan and India and she was very informative about social dilemmas that are occurring. She worked hard as a child singer and even studied to earn her law degree. She had everything and left her career to pursue other interests.

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