Named to Time 100 thrice, Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai exhibits phenomenal grit and inspires young girls everywhere. An assassination attempt by Islamic fundamentalists could not dampen her spirit, and she fought back with a bestselling memoir and won the Nobel Peace Prize as its youngest recipient, at 17.
Imran Khan is the former Prime Minister of Pakistan who was in office from 2018 to 2022. He is also the founder and chairman of the political party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. Before making an entry into politics, Imran Khan was an extremely popular international cricketer who led Pakistan to its first ever Cricket World Cup title in 1992. As a philanthropist, he established Pakistan’s first cancer hospital in Lahore.
Wasim Akram is a Pakistani former cricketer, cricket commentator, and coach. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time. He is counted amongst the finest exponents of reverse swing bowling. He became a commentator and coach following his retirement as a player. He is a recipient of the Pakistan Government’s Hilal-e-Imtiaz award.
Abdul Sattar Edhi was a Pakistani ascetic, philanthropist, and humanitarian. He is credited with founding the Edhi Foundation, which operates a volunteer ambulance network as well as several animal shelters, orphanages, homeless shelters, and rehabilitation centres across Pakistan. He was often nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize during his lifetime.
Famed Indian lyricist, poet, author, screenwriter, and film director Gulzar has been a major figure in Bollywood for over six decades. He started doing odd jobs as a teenager and eventually entered films, where he made a name for himself as a lyricist and screenwriter. He soon started directing films as well. He is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards.
Waqar Younis is a Pakistani former cricketer, commentator, and coach. During his playing career, he captained the Pakistan national cricket team. He played as a right-arm fast bowler and is still counted amongst the greatest bowlers to have played the game. He became a coach after his retirement and was once the head coach of the Pakistani cricket team.
Kumail Nanjiani is a Pakistani-American actor, comedian, and screenwriter. In 2018, Kumail Nanjiani became the first screenwriter of Pakistani origin to be nominated for an Oscar under the Best Original Screenplay category; he received the nomination for the 2017 film The Big Sick. In 2018, he was named in Time magazine's list of 100 most influential people in the world.
Benazir Bhutto was a Pakistani politician who served as Pakistan's prime minister in two separate terms and became the first woman in a Muslim majority nation to lead a democratic government. She was assassinated, at the age of 54, and after her death has been revered by many as an icon for women's rights.
Pakistani actor Mahira Khan began her career as a VJ with MTV and is best known for her award-winning performance in the telenovela Humsafar. She also gained fame with her Bollywood movie Raees, starring Shah Rukh Khan. The divorced mother of one was on BBC's 100 Women in 2010.
Muhammad Iqbal was a Scholar, poet, and politician. Born in British India (present-day Pakistan), Iqbal's poetry in Persian and Urdu languages is regarded as one of the greatest of the modern era. Also an influential politician, Muhammad Iqbal's vision of an independent Muslim state helped inspire the creation of Pakistan where he is recognized as the national poet.
Babar Azam is a Pakistani international cricketer. Currently, he captains the Pakistan team in all formats. He is regarded as one of the best batsmen in contemporary world cricket. He holds the record for being the fastest to reach 2000 runs in T20Is.
Popular Pakistani singer Atif Aslam has been equally successful in both India and Pakistan. Known for his distinctive vocal belting technique of singing, the Tamgha-e-Imtiaz-winning singer has sung Bollywood hits such as Tera Hone Laga Hoon. He is also a trained computer engineer and once aspired to be a cricketer.
Shaheen Afridi is a Pakistani cricketer and plays as a fast bowler. He represents the Pakistan national cricket team and also plays for franchise cricket teams like Dhaka Dynamites and Lahore Qalandars. He made his international debut in 2018
Pakistani barrister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto served as the prime minister of Pakistan from 1973 to 1977. He had also been the president of Pakistan from 1971 to 1973. He founded and chaired the Pakistan People's Party. His reign witnessed the formation of Bangladesh and the signing of the Simla Agreement.
Fawad Khan is a Pakistani actor, model, singer, screenwriter, and producer. A prominent actor known for his contribution to films and TV, Khan has received several prestigious awards, including a Filmfare Award and Lux Style Awards. A well-known philanthropist, Fawad Khan has helped raise funds for many charitable organizations across Pakistan.
Pakistani actor Sajal Ali soared to fame with her performances in films such as Mohabbat Jaye Bhar Mein and Quddusi Sahab Ki Bewah. She later made her Lollywood debut with the film Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hay and soon stepped into Bollywood with the Sridevi starrer Mom.
A world-renowned Indian pehlwan, or wrestler, Ghulam Mohammad Baksh Butt competed using the ring name The Great Gama. Also known as Rustam-e-Hind, he remained undefeated over an illustrious career of almost 5 decades and even saved many Hindus during the communal riots at the time of the Partition of India.
Pakistani actor Mawra Hocane is best known for her performances in serials such as Ek Tamanna Lahasil Si and Aahista Aahista. She also appeared in the Bollywood romantic tragedy Sanam Teri Kasam. She co-owns a clothing line and is equipped with a law degree from the University of London.
Known as the Queen of Pop in South Asia back in the 1980s, Pakistani singer Nazia Hassan soared to fame with tracks such as Aap Jaisa Koi and Boom Boom. She began her career as part of a duo with her brother, Zoheb Hassan. She died of lung cancer at 35.
Noor Jehan was a Pakistani actress and playback singer. In a career spanning over 60 years, she is estimated to have sung around 20,000 songs. One of the most important Pakistani singers of all time, Noor Jehan is also widely regarded as one of the most influential and greatest South Asian singers of all time.
Saadat Hasan Manto was a Pakistani playwright, writer, and author. Best remembered for his 22 collections of short stories, Manto was renowned for writing about the bitter truths of society. Not surprisingly, he was tried for obscenity on six occasions but was never convicted. Considered one of the 20th century's finest Urdu-language writers, Manto is the subject of two movies.
Pakistani engineer Abdul Qadeer Khan was a major figure in the development of his country’s nuclear plans. His research also focused on uranium enrichment. He was later apparently involved in transfer of nuclear technology to Iran, among other countries, but was pardoned by then-president Pervez Musharraf.
Shoaib Akhtar is a Pakistani former cricketer. A fast bowler, he was the first one to be recorded bowling at 100 miles per hour, a feat that earned him the nickname “Rawalpindi Express.” He is a controversial figure. He retired from international cricket in 2011. He now runs a YouTube channel and has appeared in a few TV shows.
Better known as former lover of Princess Diana, British-Pakistani cardiac surgeon Hasnat Khan was once described by the late princess as “Mr Wonderful.” He had first met Diana at the Royal Brompton Hospital, where the princess had gone to visit a friend. Hasnat is a distant relative of Imran Khan.
Son of All-India Muslim League president Aga Khan III, Aly Khan was known for his numerous affairs and his marriage to Hollywood star Rita Hayworth. The socialite and race-horse owner was stripped of his inheritance, as Aga Khan’s will mentioned Aly’s son Karim as his successor.
Abdus Salam was a Pakistani theoretical physicist who became the first Pakistani to be honored with the Nobel Prize in Physics. He was also the second person from an Islamic country to receive any Nobel Prize. He won the award in 1979 for his work concerning the electroweak unification theory. Salam played a major role in popularizing physics in Pakistan.
Pakistani singer-actor Ali Zafar has been quite successful in Bollywood and has even earned a Filmfare nomination. Best known for his performance in the film Dear Zindagi, the actor had begun his career with Pakistani TV serials. A philanthropist, too, he has his own charitable foundation.
Inzamam-ul-Haq is a Pakistani former professional cricketer. During his career, he was the leading run-scorer for Pakistan in one-day internationals. He is also the only Pakistani batsman to score 20,000 runs in the international cricket arena. He captained the Pakistan national cricket team for a few years. He became a coach after retiring.
Farhan Saeed is a Pakistani actor, singer-songwriter, entrepreneur, and music video director. He is best known as the former lead singer of the popular pop rock band Jal. He first achieved popularity in 2016 when he played Taimoor Arshad in the successful Pakistani television series, Udaari. Farhan Saeed is the recipient of several Hum Awards.
Geeta Bali was an Indian actress best remembered for her work in Hindi language films. Bali appeared in over 70 movies in a career spanning more than a decade. Geeta Bali's acting career was cut short when she died at age 35 due to smallpox.
Humayun Saeed is a Pakistani actor and producer, counted amongst the highest-paid TV actors in the country. He has a bachelor’s degree in commerce and worked in a garments company before becoming an actor. He has appeared in numerous TV shows and a handful of films. He is a co-founder of the media production house Six Sigma Plus.
Mohammad Amir is a Pakistani cricketer. He made his first-class debut in 2008 and ODI and test debuts the following year. His career came to a standstill following a spot-fixing scandal. He later returned to cricket but could never touch the heights of glory. He announced his retirement in 2020. He is married to a British citizen.
The man who revolutionized the Bollywood romantic film genre, Yash Chopra was a legendary filmmaker who gave Hindi cinema some of its most cult films, such as Kabhi Kabhie, Deewar, Darr, and Lamhe. The Padma Bhushan winner was also honored by the Swiss government for popularizing the country through his films.
Sanam Saeed is a Pakistani singer, actress, and former model. Saeed is best known for playing Kashaf Murtaza in a TV series titled Zindagi Gulzar Hai, which earned her many awards including the Lux Style Award. In 2019, Sanam Saeed was adjudged Pride of Pakistan by Daily Times.
Fatima Jinnah was a Pakistani politician, stateswoman, and dental surgeon. She was the younger sister of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. Fatima worked closely with her elder brother, who often sought the advice of his sister. Fatima Jinnah is also credited with co-founding the All Pakistan Women's Association, which aims at promoting the welfare of Pakistani women.
Misbah-ul-Haq is a former Pakistani cricketer and coach. He captained the Pakistani teams in test cricket and One Day Internationals (ODIs). He was a middle-order batsman best known for his composed playing though he was also capable of being an aggressive big shot player when required. He holds the record for the fastest fifty in test cricket.
Islamic scholar and philosopher Abul A'la Maududi was born into an elite Aurangabad family. He grew up to be fundamentalist who believed Islam should be free of Western influences and launched the Jamaʿat-i Islami. Though an important figure in Pakistani politics, he was also imprisoned for a while for opposing the government.
Apart from leading the Pakistani cricket team as its captain, cricketer/coach Younus Khan has also made quite a few records, including those of the most runs and most centuries by a Pakistani cricketer Test cricket. He was once banned for infighting, along with Mohammad Yousuf, but came back stronger than ever.
Pakistani actor, producer and former-model Imran Abbas commenced his showbiz career with modelling. He has featured in several Pakistani television serials, telefilms and films and gained attention starring in Pakistani television serials like Meri Zaat Zarra-e-Benishan and Khuda Aur Muhabbat. His Bollywood debut happened with the film Creature 3D that earned him Filmfare Award nomination for Best Male Debut category.
Iqbal Masih was a Pakistani boy who brought to light the prevalence of bonded labor in Pakistan. Iqbal escaped his slavery, studied at the Bonded Labour Liberation Front, and helped liberate more than 3,000 Pakistani children from bonded labor. He was fatally shot at the age of 12. His life inspired the creation of many organizations like We Charity.
Shahid Afridi is a former Pakistani cricketer. An all-rounder with an aggressive batting style, he is widely considered one of the most destructive cricketers. He held the fastest ODI century record for 17 years before it was broken. He still holds the record for having hit the most sixes in the history of ODI cricket.