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Obituaries

Noted historian and researcher,Fida Mohammad Khan Hassnain passed away here at Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) after a brief illness. He was admitted in the hospital for a few days following health issues. Hassnain was 93. His death has been widely condoled. Born in Srinagar on January 22, 1923, Hassnain had his earlier education at SP School here. Later, he went to Punjab University Lahore for BA and completed Masters in History and Law from Aligarh Muslim University. Recipient of numerous awards, Hassnain was conferred lifetime achievement award by the state government in 2009. He was an expert archaeologist who conducted several excavations. In 1953, he assumed the charge of Director Archives Archaeology, Research and Museum (then Archives and Libraries) and continued on the same position till his retirement in 1983. During his tenure he discovered, preserved and promoted the history of Kashmir (Afsana Rashid).
 
Pakistan’s world famous social worker and founder of Edhi Foundation, ABDUS SATTAR EDHI died of kidney and other diseases on 9 July at the age of 88 years. According to Head of the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation, Dr. Murli Dharan, he died at about 11 pm. According to his son Faisal Edhi, he was a patient of diabetes, kidney and other diseases. According to him, Edhi had himself selected the place for his grave in Edhi village 25 years ago and had willed that after his death his eyes and other body organs should be donated to other persons who were in need of them but because of many diseases only his eyes were found in healthy condition and hence the corneas of his eyes were transplanted in two other persons eyes. In Pakistan the team led by him was doing the same work as was being done in India by the team led by late Mother Teresa. His funeral Namaaz was offered by thousands of people including Pakistan’s President, prime minster, chiefs of army, navy and air force. He was laid to rest in Edhi village. He is survived by his wife Bilqees and son Faisal. Born in a village of Gujrat, he had migrated to Karachi after formation of Pakistan.
 
MUHAMMAD HASHIM ANSARI, plaintiff in Babri Masjid ownership case died of heart attack at his residence in Ayodhya on 20 July at the age of about 96 years after a prolonged illness. The news of his death spread fast throughout UP. Born in Ayodhya in 1921 and a tailor by profession he came in the lime light in 1949 when an idol of Lord Ram was secretly placed under a conspiracy in this Masjid on the night of 22-23 December 1949 as the first plaintiff and when this case was registered in Ayodhya Kotwali on 23 December1949 his name was registered as the witness. He was arrested in 1975 under Defence of India Rules and remained in Bareily Jail for 8 months. Paranhans Ram Chandra Das and Hashim Ansari though rivals in Babri Masjid ownership case were fast and close friends also and both used to go together in the same tonga to Faizabad court whenever the date of hearing of this case was fixed and also used to come back to Ayodhya together in the same tonga. He was also a great champion of Hindu Muslim unity and wanted that this dispute may be settled peacefully with mutual talks and consent of both Hindus and Muslims. He leaves behind one son, one daughter and a big family of grand children. He was laid to rest in Hazrat Shees’s graveyard.
MUHAMMAD SHAHID, former captain of Indian Olympic hockey team, mercurial player and also known as ‘dribbling magician’ for dribbling the opposite teams, died of lever, kidney etc diseases in Gurgaon on 20 July at the age of 56 years. Hailing from the then Banaras, he was being treated in BHU Hospital in Varanasi but there being no improvement in his condition he was brought to Gurgaon’s Medanta Hospital for treatment but could not be saved and breathed his last on 20 July. Considered one of the best center forward players, he was famous for dodging his rivals. Being a former railway employee, union ministry of sports and railways provided financial assistance for his treatment. He was honoured with Arjun Award in 1980 and with Padma Shri Award in 1986. He is survived by his wife Parveen, son Saif and daughter Hena. His body was taken to Varanasi and laid to rest there. 
 
 
 
Justice ALI AHMAD, former acting Chief Justice of Patna High Court died at his residence in Patna’s Patliputra Colony at the age of 90 years. He was one of the important legal luminaries of the state. He leaves behind two sons and one daughter.              

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 August 2016 on page no. 12

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