Arif Alvi’s father was dentist of first Indian PM Nehru
Newly-elected President Arif Alvi ’s father was dentist of first Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, according to biography of Mr. Alvi at Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) website.
The PTI, in its brief biography of Dr. Alvi, states: “His father Dr. Habib ur Rehman Elahi Alvi who practiced dentistry in India migrated to Pakistan in 1947 and opened a dental practice in Saddar, Karachi. Dr. Elahi Alvi was a dentist to Jawaharlal Nehru and the family has letters from Mr Nehru to Dr Alvi in their possession.”
The 69-year-old former dentist defeated Pakistan Peoples Party candidate Aitzaz Ahsan and the Pakistan Muslim League-N nominee Maulana Fazl ur Rehman in a three-way contest to become the 13th president.
Alvi was born in Karachi in 1947 where his father settled after partition. He inherited the profession of a dentist from his father who practised dentistry in India before partition and opened a dental practice in Saddar, Karachi after migration.
His father was also connected with the Jinnah family and was made a Trustee of the trust established by Shirinbai Jinnah (Quaid-e-Azam’s sister) to which she gift all her worldly belongings including the Mohatta Palace in Karachi.
He acquired his dental degree BDS (Dentistry) from de’Montmonrency College of Dentistry, Lahore and Master of Science degree in Prosthodontics from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in 1975 and Master of Science in Orthodontics in 1984 from University of the Pacific, San Francisco.
In 1997, Alvi was declared a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics. He was the primary author of the constitution of the Pakistan Dental Association and has been the elected President of the Pakistan Dental Association.
Alvi started his political career about five decades ago when he was a student of de’Montmonrency College of Dentistry, an affiliate of University of Punjab in Lahore. He was part of the students’ wing of Jamaat-i-Islami and protested against military ruler Ayub Khan.
He also participated in elections from the platform of Jamaat-i-Islami in 1979 but lost. Later he became disillusioned with the politics of Jamaat-i-Islami and joined PTI as its founding member in 1996. He also helped in writing the Constitution of the new party.
Alvi contested his first election for PTI in 1997 but lost it. His affiliation with the party continued and he steadily rose in its ranks.
He was the Secretary-General of the party from 2006 till 2013. In 2013 he was elected as a Member of the National Assembly from Constituency NA-250 Karachi and was re-elected in July 2018.