Former Rugby councillor receives prestigious honour from President of Pakistan - The Rugby Observer

Former Rugby councillor receives prestigious honour from President of Pakistan

Rugby Editorial 22nd Aug, 2022   0

A BELOVED ex-mayor and Rugby’s longest-serving councillor has been given a prestigious honour by his country of birth.

Dr James Shera MBE has been awarded the Hilal-e-Qaid-i-Azam by the President of Pakistan for his services to the country.

The award – the second highest civil honour in Pakistan – recognises those who have made notable and worthy contributions to the national interests of Pakistan. It is bestowed by the President of Pakistan once a year on the eve of Independence Day, which falls on August 14 each year.

Dr Shera, Chair of the Equality and Inclusion Partnership (EQuIP), was congratulated by the organisation’s Chief Executive.

Junaid Hussain said: “We are once again elated for James and are so proud of his recognition by the President of Pakistan.

“We are living through challenging times, coming out of the pandemic and straight into a fuel and food crisis. It is these types of activities that James has harnessed and excelled at over the years, that are needed in today’s climate more so, which bring communities together for the wider benefit of society.

“We have a lot to learn from James, who has dedicated his life to serving others, not only in the UK but abroad as well.”

Dr Shera retired in May after 40 years of service to the borough as a Labour councillor for Benn Ward.

He made history in 1988 when he became the first Pakistani to be elected Mayor of Rugby, and four years later he became one of the first recipients of the prestigious Star of Pakistan, awarded by the president of Pakistan for services to community and interfaith relations.

Coun Shera was made an MBE in 2007 and a decade later was made an Honorary Freeman of the Borough of Rugby – the highest honour Rugby Borough Council can bestow.

Earlier this year, the Forman Christian College in Pakistan awarded Dr Shera an honorary Ph.D in arts and letters in recognition of his services to community relations and interfaith relations, and he also received an honorary doctorate from Coventry University.

Dr Shera will receive the Hilal-e-Qaid-i-Azam from the President of Pakistan on March 23, Pakistan’s Republic Day.

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