Ali Imam was born in Narsinghpur, Madhya Pradesh in 1924. In the early 1940s, for education in Arts, he went to the Nagpur School of Art. Then he studied for 2 years at the Bombay-based 'J. J. School of Art'. After the independence of Pakistan in 1947, Ali Imam and some of Ali Imam's family migrated to Pakistan. There he got involved with the Progressive Writers Movement and the Communist Party of Pakistan and paid a heavy price for it. He was imprisoned 3 times for his socialist views in the early 1950s. Before that, he had received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1949 from the University of Punjab in Lahore, Pakistan.
In Lahore, he was also under constant police surveillance due to his political beliefs.
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