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Published in the 16-31 March 2005 print edition of MG; send me the print edition

Award for Kulsum Mustafa

The Milli Gazette Online

Kulsum Mustafa, a Lucknow-based journalist, won "women achievers" award on the International Women’s Day this year. Nominated by the UP State Women Commission, the award was presented to her by Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav on March 7. 

Kusum Talha receiving award from mulayam Singh

Kusum Talha receiving award
 from Mulayam Singh

Born into a renowned and educated Shia family on 16 June 1960, Kulsum Mustafa learnt the values of sound education at an early age from her mother late Kishwari Mustafa who hailed from an illustrious family of Moradabad and father (late) Syed Kalbe Mustafa, an eminent lawyer, writer, orator and a popular community leader. Her sister Shahnaz Mustafa Zafar, the first lady income tax lawyer of UP state has throughout been her guiding force in achieving excellence in one's profession. 

Kulsum married veteran journalist Osama Talha in 1986, who proved to be a great source of inspiration in her life. While his untimely demise in 1995, proved to be a great jolt to her, she did not let her personal grief come either in the way of her career or in the bringing up of her two children who were then aged seven (Uzma) and eleven months (Abbas). Holding on to the values of tradition, she gave them a solid foundation through good education. She has interwoven her domestic responsibilities with her professional abilities to give it the right balance. 

With a journalistic career of 22 years behind her, Ms Mustafa proved her place not only in her chosen profession but simultaneously contributed to society by setting an example of total dedication of a home-maker despite being a single parent. Starting her career with the Northern India Patrika in 1983 as a trainee sub editor, she later switched to The Times of India, Lucknow, and worked there for 17 years before joining the Indian Express as principal correspondent when the Lucknow edition was launched in July 2001. In August 2004, she joined the Associated Press news agency which has its headquarters in Washington. With a vast and rich experience both on desk as well as in reporting, Ms Mustafa holds the distinction of being the first woman journalist to bring out night editions in Uttar Pradesh.

Writing on a vast variety of subjects, including politics, culture and social issues, Ms Mustafa's forte remains interviews and human angle stories. During the two decades Ms Mustafa has also provided professional assistance to many international papers/media like Washington Post, The Independent, New York Times, The Guardian, Voice of America (VoA), German Radio and BBC. She had covered the 6th December, 1992, Babri Masjid demolition with the VoA bureau chief in Ayodhya. For the last 27 years Ms Mustafa has been closely associated with the Doordarshan and AIR. 

For her contribution to journalism she has received several awards, including the Aizaz Rizvi memorial award, Lions Club Award, Fankar Society honour to name a few. She regularly conducts career guidance lectures at Jaipuria Institute of Masscom, Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi, and Pioneer Media School. Widely traveled, Ms Mustafa has been to UK, France, Austria, Holland, Germany, Nepal and Pakistan.

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