Tarek Fatah was a journalist and writer who was born in Karachi, Pakistan. He strongly supported LGBT rights, the separation of church and state, and a liberal and progressive form of Islam.
He faced criticism and death threats for his views but remained committed to his advocacy. Fatah’s work as a journalist and human rights activist will continue to be remembered for years to come. Born on November 20, 1949, in Karachi, Pakistan, Tarek Fatah was a Pakistani-Canadian journalist and author.
He spoke out for progressive Islam and human rights, including LGBT rights and the separation of religion and state. In this article, we will explore his career, political and media activity, beliefs, reception, advocacy groups, assassination plot, and books.
Tarek Fatah Biography
Tarek Fatah was a political activist, writer, and broadcaster  who was born on November 20, 1949, in Karachi, Pakistan, and passed away on April 24, 2023, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He was a Pakistani-Canadian citizen and studied at the University of Karachi.
Fatah wrote non-fiction books on religion and politics and supported secularism, liberalism, and progressivism within Islam and social democracy.
He received notable awards such as the Donner Prize and the Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Book Award. He was survived by his wife, Nargis Fatah, and two children, Natasha and Nazia Fatah. 
Early Life | Career
Fatah was born into a family of Punjabi Muslims who had moved from Bombay to Karachi after India was split in 1947. He got a degree in biochemistry from the University of Karachi,  but he went into news right away.
In 1970, he started working as a reporter for the Karachi Sun. He later worked for Pakistan Television as a reporter who did investigations. In the 1960s and 1970s, Fatah was a left-wing student leader who was put in jail twice by military governments.
In 1977, the Zia-ul Haq government charged him with sedition and stopped him from working as a journalist. After this, he left Pakistan and moved to Saudi Arabia. In 1987, he finally moved to Canada.
Nationality | Ethnicity
Tarek Fatah was born in Karachi, Pakistan, to a Punjabi Muslim family that had moved there from Bombay after the 1947 partition. He identified as an “Indian born in Pakistan” and a “Punjabi born into Islam.” Tarek Fatah was a Pakistani-Canadian.
Advocacy for Progressive Islam
Fatah was a strong supporter of progressive Islam and fought the extremist views of the Pakistani religious and political establishment. He spoke out against the division of India because he thought it was a mistake that has hurt India for a long time.
Fatah said this about himself: “I am an Indian born in Pakistan, a Punjabi born in Islam, an immigrant in Canada with a Muslim mindset, rooted in a Marxist youth. I am one of Salman Rushdie’s many Midnight’s Children. We were taken from the birthplace of a great culture and made permanent refugees, sent in search of an oasis that turned out to be a mirage.
Fatah was a leftist student leader in the 1960s and 1970s, and he was imprisoned twice by military regimes in Pakistan. He opposed the partition of India, believing it to be a mistake that has had lasting negative effects. In the 1990s, he was involved in the New Democratic Party of Canada and later joined the Liberal Party.
Fatah entered the field of journalism in 1970 as a reporter for the Karachi Sun. He later became an investigative journalist for Pakistan Television. He left Pakistan in 1987 and settled in Canada. In Canada, Fatah became a freelance journalist and wrote for various publications, including the Toronto Sun, the National Post, and the Globe and Mail.
Fatah was known for his views on progressive Islam and human rights. He advocated for a liberal, progressive form of Islam and opposed the extremist views of the Pakistani religious and political establishment. He also advocated for LGBT rights, separation of religion and state, and opposed sharia law.
Fatah was both praised and criticized for his views. Some hailed him as a champion of human rights and religious tolerance, while others accused him of being Islamophobic and a self-hating Muslim. Despite this, Fatah remained steadfast in his advocacy for progressive Islam and human rights.
Fatah was a founding member and spokesperson for the Muslim Canadian Congress, which promotes a progressive and secular vision of Islam. He also served as the Communications Director for the Canadian Islamic Congress (CIC) before resigning in 2006.
In 2011, it was reported that Fatah was the target of an assassination plot by a Pakistani Islamist group. The group had reportedly offered a $1 million bounty for his death.
Fatah was the author of several books, including “Chasing a Mirage: The Tragic Illusion of an Islamic State,” which was published in 2008. The book explores the history of political Islam and the rise of Islamic fundamentalism in Pakistan.
Tarek Fatah was a Pakistani-born Canadian writer, broadcaster, and liberal activist. He was married to Nargis Tapal, and they had two children (Natasha Fatah and Nazia Fatah). He supported LGBT rights, the separation of religion and state, and a liberal, progressive form of Islam. He was against sharia law.
Tarek Fatah was a very interesting person who spent his whole life working for a more modern form of Islam. He died on April 24, 2023, after a long battle with cancer.  He was 73 years old. People will remember him for what he did in news and how hard he worked to support human rights and religious tolerance.
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