Syed Ahmed Shah (Urdu: سید احمد شاہ ) (commonly known as Patras Bokhari – پطرس بخاری) HI, (1 October 1898, Peshawar – 5 December 1958, New York) was an Urdu humourist, educator, essayist, broadcaster and diplomat from Pakistan.
Patras received his early education from Peshawar and in 1916 he moved from Islamia College Peshawar to join Government College Lahore. After completing his Masters in English he was appointed as lecturer at the same institution.
Patras Bokhari left Government College Lahore in 1925 to study at Emmanuel College, Cambridge University to complete a Tripos in English. Many years later, the Bokhari English Prize was established there in his honor.
In 1927, he came back to Government College Lahore, and as a Professor remained there till 1939. Before the formation of Pakistan in 1947, he was the Director General of All India Radio. Being a Professor of English Literature he also served as the Principal of Government College Lahore from 1947 to 1950. The Urdu poets Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Noon Meem Rashid, were among his students. After the formation of Pakistan, he served as the first permanent representative of Pakistan in the United Nations from 1951–1954. From 1954-1958 he remained as the Under Secretary of the UN, Head of Information. He died during his diplomatic service and is buried in New York, USA.
He got a great success in his life, and was bestowed upon with many honors by Allah Almighty. Some of his successes and honors are mentioned below.
• His volume of essays, Patras Kay Mazameen – پطرس کے مظامین (Essays of Patras), published in 1927 is considered as an asset of Urdu humor.
• He accompanied Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan on his first visit to the United States as the Prime Minister’s speech writer.
• In 1945 Patras Bokhari was awarded the Companion of the Indian Empire (CIE) Award.
• Bokhari Auditorium on Government College University is named after him.
• The Government of Tunisia, named a Road after him in Tunis, as a recognition for his contribution towards the freedom of Tunisia from French Colonial Rule in 1956.
• There is also a road named after him in Islamabad, Federal Capital of Pakistan.
• Editorial appears in the New York Times on 6 December 1958, a day after his demise, in which he was described as a Citizen of the World.
• In October 1998, to mark his birth centenary, the Government of Pakistan issued a postage stamp with his photograph under the series, Pioneers of Pakistan.
• On 14 August 2003 President of Pakistan, General Pervez Musharraf announced the conferment of Hilal-e-Imtiaz, posthumously to Patras Bokhari, the country’s second highest Civilian Award.