Zakir Husain

Zakir Husain(Feb 8, 1897 – Forever)

He was the third President of India. Hussain was born in Hyderabad (India). His Pakhtun father had migrated to Hyderabad from Qaimganj, district Farrukhabad in Uttar Pradesh. He was educated at Islamia High School, Etawah and at the Anglo-Muhammadan Oriental College (now Aligarh Muslim University where he was a prominent student leader ). Hussain, then only 23, was among the small group of students and teachers who founded a National Muslim University near Delhi and named it Jamia Millia Islamia. He subsequently went to Germany to obtain a PhD from the University of Berlin in Economics. While in Germany Hussain was instrumental in bringing out the anthology of arguably the greatest Urdu poet Mirza Assadullah Khan “Ghalib”.

He returned to India to head the Jamia Millia Islamia which was facing closure in 1927. He continued in that position for the next twenty one years providing academic and managerial leadership to an institution that was intimately involved with India’s struggle for freedom from the British Rule and experimented with value base education on the lines advocated by Mahatma Gandhi. During this period he continued to engage himself with movements for educational reforms in India and was particularly active in the affairs of his old alma mater the MAO College, now the Aligarh Muslim University. During this period Hussain emerged as one of the most prominent educational thinkers and practitioners of modern India.

Soon after India attained independence he agreed to be the Vice chancellor of the Aligarh Muslim University which, because of active involvement of a section of its teachers and students in the movement for creation of Pakistan was facing trying times in post partition India. Dr Hussain, again, provided leadership during a critical phase of the history of the University at Aligarh from 1948-1956.

A Collection By Chetan.

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