He was born in Gilgit in 1917 and was known for his autobiography, Shahab Nama. Shahab started writing in his early days both in Urdu and English languages. At the young age of 16, he won an international essay competition organized by the Readers Digest, London. He graduated from Prince of Wales College, Jammu.According to his autobiography, he spent his childhood in Eastern Punjab near Chamkor Sahib, Ropar (Rupnagar) District. He was selected for Indian Civil Service in 1940 and later volunteered to serve in Bengal during the famine of 1943.After coming to Pakistan he was first posted in the Ministry of Commerce as a Deputy Secretary and then as Chief Secretary of the new state of Azad Kashmir at Muzaffarabad. Thereafter, he became Deputy Commissioner of Jhang, Punjab.He also served as Director of Industries of Punjab and dealt mostly with settlement issues concerning migration. He was appointed Principal Secretary to the then Governor General Ghulam Muhammad and remained on this post during Iskander Mirza’s and Ayub Khan’s regimes.He served as Ambassador of Pakistan to Netherlands in 1962 and later as Secretary of Information and Education. Shahab was elected a member of the executive board of Unesco in 1968.