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Published in the 16-31 May 2004 print edition of MG; send me the print edition


The working president of the Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee and Rajya Sabha member, Abrar Ahmed, was killed in a road accident near Deoli in Tonk district of the state on May 4. He was on his way from Jaipur to Jhalawar to campaign for the party. Ahmed was 48. He served as a Union minister in the P.V. Narasimha Rao Government at the centre in 1993. He was elected to Rajya Sabha for the first time in 1988, and the second time in 2002. He joined BJP for a brief period a few years ago, but soon returned to the Congress fold. Ahmed’s appointment was being perceived as a deft move of the Congress to improve its relations with minorities. He is survived by his aged mother, wife, a son and a daughter.

AASIYA JEELANI, a freelance journalist and human rights activist died in an IED explosion at Chandigam, Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir on April 20. She edited Voices Unheard, a quarterly magazine of Women’s Initiative for Peace and Disarmament (KWIPD) and was a volunteer of the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP). She fought for women’s emancipation especially for half widows. Her death has been widely condoled by human rights activists, journalists, social activists and political leaders.

MAULANA HABIBULLAH SHAH, a renowned religious scholar of North Kashmir, died after a brief illness in Varmul on 11 April. He was 95. Chairman of Ulama Council, Varmul, Maulana Habibullah devoted his life to religious causes. He was also Imam and Khateeb of Jama Masjid Baitul Mukarram. Governor S.K. Sinha paid tributes to the Maulana for his role in strengthening the bonds of social harmony and sympathised with the bereaved family. Chief minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed said the contributions of Maulana Habibullah in spreading religious knowledge would be remembered for long. He also visited the family and sympathised with them. 

ABDUL SHAFEE LALMIYAN, a former Congress MP died after a prolonged illness at his residence in Sadar (Delhi) on 26 April. He was 78 and is survived by wife, three sons and three daughters.

LUTFUR RAHMAN ASLAM, son of Maulana Hifzur Rahman, former general secretary of Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind died after protracted illness in Delhi on 29 April. He was 75 and is survived by four sons and a daughter. He retired from the post of Labour Welfare Officer, Jammu and Kashmir.

SANAUR RAHMAN SHAMSI, former secretary of Calcutta Shamsi Welfare Society and member of All India Shamsi Welfare Federation died at the age of 68. He is survived by wife, three sons and two daughters. 

ER. BASHIR AHMAD, a famous social activist of Shophian, Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir died of a massive heart attack on 27 April. He was 56. Bhat was superintendent engineer of Islamabad and Pulwama districts and was closely associated with Shah-e-Hamadan Institute. He was also associated with the institute’s monthly magazine Justujoo. Educationists and intellectuals of the Valley have condoled Bhat’s demise. «

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