Edhi was born in 1928 in Bantva in the Gujarat, India.When he was eleven, his mother became paralyzed and later grewmentally ill and died when he was 19. His personal experiences causedhim to develop a system of services for old, mentally ill and challengedpeople.Edhi and his family migrated to Pakistan in 1947. He initially started asa peddler, later became a commission agent selling cloth in thewholesale market in Karachi. After a few years, he established a freedispensary with the help from his community. He later established awelfare trust, "Edhi Trust".Abdul Sattar Edhi was married in 1965 to Bilquis, a nurse who workedat the Edhi dispensary. The couple have four children, two daughtersand two sons. Bilquis runs the free maternity home at the headquarterin Karachi and organizes the adoption of illegitimate and abandonedbabies.
Edhi Foundation runs the worlds largest ambulance serviceand operates free nursing homes, orphanages, clinics,womens shelters, and rehab centers for drug addicts andmentally ill individuals.It has run relief operations in Africa, Middle East, theCaucasus region, eastern Europe and US where it providedaid following the New Orleans hurricane of 2005.In November 2011, Edhi was recommended for a Nobel Peaceprize by the Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani.
In the early 1980’s he was arrested byIsraeli troops while entering Lebanon.In 2006, he was detained in Toronto,Canada, for 16 hours.In January 2008, US immigration officialsinterrogated Edhi at the John F. KennedyAirport in New York for over eight hours,and seized his passport and otherdocuments.When asked about the frequentdetention, Edhi said "The onlyexplanation I can think of is my beard andmy dress." In January 2009, Edhi wasrefused entry to Gaza by Egyptianauthorities.
Ramon Magsaysay Award for Public ServiceLenin Peace PrizeLargest Voluntary Ambulance Organization of the WorldHamdan Award for volunteers in Humanitarian Medical ServicesInternational Balzan Prize for Humanity, Peace and BrotherhoodHonorary Doctorate degree from the Institute of Business Administration KarachiUNESCO-Madanjeet Singh PrizeAhmadiyya Muslim Peace PrizeSilver Jubilee Shield by College of Physicians and Surgeons, Pakistan,The Social Worker of Sub-Continent by Government of Sind, PakistanNishan-e-Imtiaz, civil decoration from Government of PakistanPakistan Civic Award from the Pakistan Civic SocietyShield of Honor by Pakistan ArmyKhidmat Award by Pakistan Academy of Medical SciencesHuman Rights Award by Pakistan Human Rights Society