Mohammed Hanif was born in Okara. At the age of 16 entered the Pakistani Air Force Academy. After realising he had a terrible sense of direction and that he preferred spending time in the Academy library to the airfields, Hanif left the Pakistan Air Force to pursue a career in journalism. He has written for Newsline, India Today, The Washington Post, The New York Times and Counter Punch. His play, The Dictator’s Wife, was recently staged at Hampstead Theatre. Hanif is a graduate of UEA creative writing programme. He lives in London and is the head of the BBC’s Urdu Service.