Mustansar Hussain Tarar (Urdu: مستنصر حسين تارڑ) ( March 1, 1939)is a Pakistani author, actor, former Radio Show Host, compere and enthusiast. Having made a name for himself by taking the mantle in Pakistan's mountaineering community, Mustansar Hussain is widely recognized as one of the most famous and well known personalities in both Pakistan and the rest of the world. Though the origin of his fame and decadence is usually considered to be his established and decorated career and as a writer, Tarar can also be recognized as the foremost endorser for tourism projects in Northern areas of Pakistan, having exorbitantly increased the array of tourist exposure to the areas in question by becoming both a mountaineer and an adventure author who uses these locations as backdrops for his storylines.
Mustansar Hussain's literary proficiency as an author often overshadows the fact that he has been an active mountaineer for a very extensive period of time. Having embarked upon several painstaking and challenging tasks such as the ascension of K-2 and the surpassing of the treacherous "Chitti Buoi" Glacier (translated as a glacier with large caravesses). More significantly, both of Mustansar Hussain's professions often intertwine and relate, since he uses his experiences on his expeditions as compilations or travelogues. Though some of his publications have met lukewarm reactions due to supposed exaggeration, he reflects on this predicament with the notion that "words or even pictures cannot successfully express the beauty and splendor of nature in it's true spirit."
Tarar opines in a similar manner to the portrayal of environments and localities in other adventure novels. As such, in one of his books, he advises his critics to live through similar experience before criticizing because most people cannot dare go through such dangerous sporting experience of high altitude trekking. This advice is further testified through the respect and regards that Tarar carries in Pakistani climbing community.
Pakistan's biggest mountaineering names like Nazir Sabir (first Pakistani climber on Everest and among the only few Pakistanis to have summitted K2) and Rajab Shah also regard Tarar as one of their motivations although both of these climbers hail from the Northern Areas where livelihood of a lot of people is through being high altitude guide and porters. Tarar is a household name in the Northern Areas of Pakistan and people in remotest northern areas take pride in being his hosts during his visits and expeditions.
Tarar's first book Nikley Teri Talaash Main, a travelogue of Europe was published in 1971, he has so far over forty titles to his credit which include all genre of literature; travelogues, novels, short stories and collection of his newspaper columns and Television dramas. He has been the best-seller fiction writer of Pakistan for the last fifteen years.
Mustansar was born in 'jokalian' a small town in Punjab, Pakistan. He spent his early childhood in the village. However he was destined to live some precious moments of his life in the lively city Lahore.So the fate played its tricks , and his family moved to culturally rich Lahore. His father Rehmat Khan Tarar opened a small seed store that flourished into sub-continent's lead seed supplier company. Mr Tarar got his schooling from Rang Mehal Mission High School and Muslim Model High School, Lahore. He , then got admission in Government College Lahore , a college that owns the credit to polish several intellectuals of Pakistan.In somewhat around 1950's , he went to London for higher studies. In London, he spent much of his time in watching and enjoying movies , doing theater and reading books. In 1957 he attended the World Youth Festival in Moscow and wrote a book named 'Fakhta' (Dove) on that experience.
Returning London, he met Majeed Nizami the editor of Nawai waqt , the famous Pakistani newspaper. During those days Majeed was in London as a reporter for the newspaper. He suggested Mustansar to write a travelogue of Russia .This marks the starting of Mustansar's literary life. His first literary writing was a travelogue , " London Say Moscow Taq " that was published in three episodes. After this literary endeavor he returned to his homeland , Pakistan.For a short period he looked after the business of his father. Meanwhile he got the chance to act for PTV.He also succeeded in establishing himself as a good actor. It's testimony is that Ashfaq Ahmed chose him to act for one of his plays, Qurat-ul-Ain.
In 1969 he travelled seventeen European countries. On his return he wrote the travelogue , ' Niklay Teri Talash Main ' (نکلے تیری تلاش میں).This travelogue has been included by the Moscow University as a content of Urdu course. After the completion of this literary pearl , he remained busy in the research work that meant for another literary creation , the travelogue , ' Undlas May Ajnabi (اندلس میں اجنبی.
His first novel was , Pyar Ka Pehla Sher ' (پیار کا پھلا شھر') that is still the best-seller. He wrote this novel by sitting in one of the shops located in the extreme hustle bustle of ' Guwal-Mandi ', Lahore During 1980's he chose the northern areas of Pakistan to be infused in the charismatic beauty with his son Saljook. He wrote twelve travelogues based on the Northern Areas of Pakistan. A lake in Fairy Meadows , a location of northern area of Pakistan has been named after Mustansar Hussain Tarar as , 'Tarar lake'.
He was a host of PTV's live morning transmission Subuh Bakhair (Urdu: صبح بخیر) (Good Morning),starting in January 1988 for many years. His unconventional and down-to-earth style of comparing earned him great popularity among people from all circles of life. He is one of the most recognized personality among children as he spent a big part of transmission time addressing exclusively children. He proclaimed himself Cha Cha Jee (Urdu: چاچا جی) (paternal uncle) of all Pakistani children and soon became known by this title. He often told on TV that even adults called him Cha Cha Jee in letters and in person.
Currently he writes a weekly column for Akhbar-e-Jehan, he also writes a fortnightly column for the English language daily "Dawn" and columns for an Urdu language daily Aaj Daily.
He is the author of more than 17 travelogs and many novels. His novel Raakh was nominated as one of the best in the history of sub-continent South-Asia. His books include:He is Currently written Colum In Daily Jinnah(Urdu Daily)
• Raisani ( Named on A British Award Winning Police Officer Mir Mohammad Ali Raisani )
• Andulus Mayn Ajnabi (اندلس میں اجنبی) (Stranger in Spain)
• Bahhao (بھا و) (Flow)
• Bay Izti Kharab (بے عزتی خراب) (Insulting dishonor) - This phrase is deliberately wrong and commonly used this way in local communities, thus the book name.
• Berfeeli Bulandiyan (برفیلی بلندیاں) (Snowy Heights)
• Carvan Sarai (کارواں سرایےؑ) (Caravan Motel)
• K-2 Kahani (کے ٹو کھانی) (K2 Story)
• CHIK CHUK (چک چک) (Remove the curtain)
• CHITRAL DASTAAN (چترال داستان) (Chitral Tale)
• Dais Huwaa Perdais (دیس ھٗوے پردیس) (Homeland becomes foreign land)
• Deyo Saai (دیوسا یی)
• Dakia aur Jolaha (ڈاکیا اور جولاھا) (Postman and cloth-maker)
• Gadhay Hamaray Bhai Hain (گدھے ھمارے بھایی ھیں) (Donkeys are our brothers)
• Ghar-e-Hira mien ek Raat (a night in cave Hira)
• Guzara Naheen Hota (گزارا نھی ھوتا) (Hard to get by)
• Gypsi (جپسی)
• Hazaron Hain Shikway (ھزاروں ھیں شکوے) (Have thousands of complaints)
• Hazaron Raastay (ھزاروں راستے) (Thousands of paths)
• Hunza Dastaan (ھنزھ داستان) (Hunza Tale)
• Kaalaash (کالاش)
• Khana Badosh (خانھ بدوش) (Gypsi)
• Moorat (مورت) (Idol)
• Mun Wal Kabbey Shariff (منھ ول کعبے شریف دے) (Face towards Qibla)
• Nanga Parbat (نانگاپربت) (named after the mountain)
• Nepal Nagri (نیپال نگری) (Land of Nepal)
• Niklay Teri Talash Main (نکلے تیری تلاش میں) (Out in your search)
• Pakhairoo (پکھیرو) (Birds)
• Parinday (پرندے) (Birds)
• Parwaz (پرواز) (Flight)
• Payar Ka Pehla Shehr (پیار کا پھلا شھر) (Love's first city)
• Putli Peking Ki (پتلی پیکنگ کی) (Monument from Peking)
• Qilaa Jangi (قلعھ جنگی) (Fortified war)
• Qurbat-e-Merg Main Mohabbat (قربت مرگ میں محبت) (Love in the vicinity of death)
• Raakh (راکھ) (Ash)
• Safar Shumal Kay (سفر شمال کے) (Travels of the north)
• Shamshaal Baimesaal (شمشھال بیمثال) (Extraordinary Shamshaal)
• Shehpar (شھپر) (Wings)
• Shuter Murgh Riasat (شتر مرغ ریاست) (Ostrich State)
• Snow Lake (سنو لیک)
• Sunehri Ullo Ka Shaher (سنھری الو کا شھر) (The city of golden owl)
• Yaak Saraey (یاک سرایے) (Yaak Inn)
He is also the author of many famous drama serials for PTV.
• Aik Haqeeqat Aik Afsana (One Reality, One Fiction)
• Hazaron Raastey (Thousands of Paths)
• Parinda (Bird)
• Sooraj Ke Sath Sath (Along with Sun)
• Kelash (Name of a tribe)