Known for her diverse onscreen roles that sometimes saw her as a conniving sister-in-law to playing the role of an affectionate mother, Ishrat Hashmi made her audiences realize what natural acting is all about. Having started her career in the year 1960 as a drama artiste on radio, she switched to television in the year 1973.
Her first television drama was 'Zer, Zabar, Pesh' and with the strong training in acting that she got during her radio days, she garnered instant success. Soon enough, Ishrat Hashmi's name became a compulsory part of almost every other drama with both her costars and audiences loving her alike. Although she joined Pakistan Television or PTV during the time when Arsh-e-Muneer and Azra Sherwani were immensely popular, Ishrat Hashmi's motherly warmth onscreen was a feature that made her stand apart from all her contemporaries.
During the golden period of PTV dramas in the seventies, the television audiences fell in love with Ishrat Hashmi's onscreen portrayals of the characters she played in dramas such as 'Shama' and 'Afshan'. In 1980s, she played the unforgettable role of the perfect mother in the super hit drama serial 'Dhoop Kinarey', while during the 1990s, she played memorable roles in 'Ba Adab, Ba Mulahiza', 'Uroosa', 'Family 93', 'Aahat' and 'Burger Family'.
Later on, she played supporting roles in dramas depicting history such as 'Aakhri Chataan' and 'Tipu Sultan'. Among her most popular long plays, 'Eid Train' remains a favorite even to this day with its comedic brilliance and excellent performances by Ishrat Hashmi and the rest of the cast members. Her career in television came to an end when she migrated abroad from Pakistan.
This versatile actress, who served the show business for over 30 years, passed away on 2nd February, 2005. Being one of the most well-liked personalities at the PTV Karachi Center, her colleagues showered her with love, appreciation and praise after her death.