TJ is my batch mate (1964-1969), and he is amongst
the humblest of Petarians. During his years at Petaro, he was an appointment
holder from 9th to 12th Class in Jinnah House. During 1968-1969, he was
the JUO of Jinnah House as well. He was good at sports and academics. He was
also a member of the
Famous Forties in 1968.
Petaro, Tahir joined Pakistan Navy in 1969 and was
commissioned as an officer in 1972 after being
granted a B.Sc. degree by the Naval Academy. He
continued further studies while in service. He
attended the Long C'/Electronic Warfare Course in
1978-79, and got a Masters in War Studies from Quaid-e-Azam University in 1984-85.
TJ served the
Pakistan Navy until his retirement in 2003. During
this period, he served on board various ships and
establishments. While he has many achievements to
his credit, I would like to mention a few key ones
here. During 1993-1995, while serving on board PNS
Dacca (logistics ship) as Executive Officer, he participated in under
the United Nations Mission for provision of of material and military
assistance to the Somalian Government. They captured Somalian harbour
and airport, before other allied nations arrived.
He then served as Director Signals of the Pakistan
Navy from 1995-1999. This was a great experience
for him. During this period, he was instrumental
in establishing over 18,000 line PABX exchange for
the Pakistan Navy using state of the art
communications equipment. This project was then
extended to the entire Navy and the establishment
of NAVCOM using optical fibre and digital
communications. He attended ITU (International
Telecommunications Union) conferences, and served
as a member of the National Communication Security
Board which led to the establishment of the
Frequency Allocation Board. Under this capacity,
he was involved in inspection of security systems
for the Pakistani missions abroad, the Presidency,
PM Secretariat and other important installations.
He was also involved in the survey to lay fiber
optic cable to Gwadar, and provision of satellite
communications from INMARSAT to Pakistan Navy
ships and aircraft under ITU supervision.
In 1999, he was posted on delegation from the Navy
to the Ministry of IT & Telecom, Govt of Pakistan
as Director Administration of the Pakistan
Software Export Board. He served in this capacity
until after his retirement from the Navy, i.e.
until 2004. During this period, he established the
first of the software parks in Pakistan - two in
Islamabad and one in Lahore. He also supervised
and monitored the laying of undersea SEAMEWE 3
optical fiber cable from Karachi to Fujairah, UAE,
and established software outlets in Japan,
Australia and the Silicon Valley (USA) under the
generic name of Jinnah Center for outsourcing
software expertise. He worked in close conjunction
with PASHA (Pakistan Software House Association)
for opportunities abroad.
In recent years, TJ
was employed as General Manager of Bahria Security
Services in Islamabad.
By and large, he
kept good health and used to walk 6km every day.
He loved to go on shikar and would carry his
weight around. He did suffer from mild cancer a
few years back, but all symptoms were removed
TJ Siddiqui is also a pioneer in the establishment
of the Petarian Association.
He was the brain and visionary behind its
formation, but he never claimed to be as such.
This shows the humbleness of the great man. He was the first
Treasurer ever of the Association for two terms,
and then he also served as the General Secretary.
On 30 April 2013, he
felt a pain in his chest and he went to PNS Hafeez
hospital in Islamabad. After going through tests
and ECG, the doctors apparently didnt find
anything abnormal which is strange. He returned
home and within half an hour he had a second
attack and expired before he could get back to the
May Allah grant the
choicest place in jannatul firdaus to TJ and raise
him up on the Last Day amongst the Saliheen.
It is an honour for
me to be the batch mate of Capt.PN(R) T.J.
Siddiqui - one of the humblest, straight forward
and upright colleagues of ours.