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Plant watcher
By Obaid Nasir, Lucknow

Dr Mohammad Iqtedar Husain Farooqi, the retired deputy director of National Botanical Research Institute, is not only a renowned scientist but an equally renowned author particularly on science subjects. The man has written many books and articles on science even in Urdu and has enriched the urdu literature with science subjects and has shown a way to other not to hesitate in writing in their mother tongue.

Dr. Farooqi has authored several books and more than one hundred articles in Urdu, Hindi and English on environment, modern technology, medicinal plants, economic plants, Islamic science and Prophetic medicines.

Though several books and articles are there to his credit but his magnum opus "Plants of Qur'an" and its Urdu translation "Nabatate Qur'anai" is unparalleled and has been acclaimed internationally by Muslim scholars and Ulema. Late Maulana Syed Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi and Maulana Syed Kalbe Sadiq have termed it as the first authentic work on the subject. The book has been translated in Persian by Islamic Research Foundation Iran and the Arabic version by a well known Islamic organization. Several other versions including the South Indian languages have also been published.

He has authored another important book on Prophetic medicines i.e. Medicinal Plants in the tradition of Prophet Mohammad. Its Urdu version has been named as "Ahadis Nabawi mein Mazkur Nabatat, Adwiya aur Ghizayen" .Both the books have been acclaimed internationally and almost all the important news papers have reviewed them. More than one hundred articles in Urdu by Dr. Farooqi on Islamic knowledge and popular science have been published by almost all the Urdu news-papers and periodicals .In recognition of his services to Urdu the Urdu academies of UP and Bihar have honoured him. Besides, Mir Academy Lucknow too has recognised his services to Urdu Science literature and has given him its highest literary award. Dr Farooqi is the General Secretary of Urdu Scientific Society, an organization launched with the objective of creating scientific temper in the society. As the local coordinator of Maulana Azad Urdu University Lucknow, he is doing a yeoman's job in spreading education among Muslim youths who, due to some economic and social problems, could not continue their studies.

A product of Aligarh Muslim University Dr. Farooqi has got many national and international Science awards including Kheti award by Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, recipient of King Saud gold medal AMU. He is the convenor of Panel of Industrial Gums Bureau of India standard, secretary of Kaul Science Foundation and member of several science societies in India and abroad .

Born on 7 April 1936, Dr. Farooqi got his masters degree in organic chemistry from AMU in 1958 and Ph.D in phytochemistry in 1966.He started his career as a teacher in AMU polytechnic and has a thirty five years research experience in the field of phytochemistry at Forest Research Institute Dehradun and National Botanical Research Institute Lucknow and retired as a Scientist from the same institution .He is providing consultancy and assistance to several Indian industries dealing in natural products. He is the project in-charge of several projects on vegetable products financed by various agencies like US Deptt. of Agriculture and of Science and Technology. However his main interest is spreading education among Muslim masses and creating a scientific temper among them.

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