Islamabad, June 18 (IANS) In an embarrassing blooper, the Pakistan foreign office on Saturday issued a condolence message on the “sad demise” of ailing philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi, only to retract it, saying it had been issued based on “wrong information”.
“We are withdrawing the press release which was based on wrong information passed to this office. Inconvenience is regretted,” said the foreign office in a statement.
In the earlier condolence message, quoting Pakistan’s top foreign advisor to the Prime Minister, Sartaj Aziz, it said: “Today, with the sad demise of legendary philanthropist Maulana Abdul Sattar Edhi, everyone in Pakistan, Pakistanis abroad and millions of others, are in mourning.”
It went on to add that “The iconic Edhi saheb was a soul who spent his whole life engaged in the noble cause of serving humanity. He lived for others.”
The foreign office later deleted the condolence message from its website.
Edhi is under treatment at a hospital in Karachi for kidney failure.
Pakistanis around the world have expressed concern over his deteriorating health.
Edhi has become a well-known name in India after he took care of Geeta, a hearing and speech-impaired Indian girl, for over a decade in his orphanage in Karachi. He allowed the girl, who had strayed in Pakistan when she was 11 years old, to follow her Hindu religion and named her Geeta.
She was returned to India last October in a hyped diplomatic event.