Dr Syed Abdul Mannan

By Mohammad Himayatul Muqeet Siddiqi

A well-known physician and a sincere humanitarian, Dr Syed Abdul Mannan, a true representative of Hyderabadi culture and traditions, passed away on July 17, 2009, at the ripe age of 94.

Born in Hyderabad on 10th May, 1916, he received his early education in the city. He joined the Usmania Medical College and passed MBBS (Urdu medium) with distinction in 1937. He had his house surgency at the Usmania Hospital.

For sometime he was also associated with medical services of Nizam of Hyderabad's army where he became a captain. He then went to England for higher studies and got MRCP Degree from Edinburgh University FAMS, FCGP and FRCP degrees from Glasgow University. Again from Edinburgh University he obtained DTM & H Degree.

After completing his education in 1950, he visited France, Italy, Switzerland etc and on return to India he settled down in Hyderabad to serve the people of his country. He joined Indian Army's hospital in Hyderabad. In 1951 he left government job and started his own private clinic. Nawab Mir Osman Ali Khan, the last Nizam of Hyderabad, appointed him his personal physician.

Dr Mannan was also associated with a number of social, cultural, literary and religious organisations like Anjuman Taraqqi-e Urdu, Urdu Ghar, Asharaful Madaris, Osmania Medical College Old Students Association, Oriental Urdu College, Sultanul Uloom Educational Society and a host of other organisations. He was also one of the founder-members of Toor Baitul Mall which was set up for providing interest-free loans to poor Muslims. After performing Hajj in 1958 he developed an inner urge for religious service and joined Qur'an and Seerat Society which was engaged in the preaching of Islam and Seerat from house to house and held religious meetings every month which were attended by large number of people including intellectuals and professionals.

He was an efficient doctor and treated numerous patients from all walks of life. In addition to his own clinic he was also incharge of Usra Hospital. In those days, for the people of Old Hyderabad there were no other medical facilities except Osmania Hospital. Under such circumstances through Usra Hospital he rendered valuable medical services to the people of Old City which can never be forgotten. Those were the days when male doctors were appointed in government maternity homes. The late Maulana Abdur Razzaq Latifi, Chief of Andhra Pradesh Jamat-e Islami, in his farsightedness, set up Muslims Maternity and Zanana General Hospital. Dr Mannan also was one of the founder members of this hospital which has now a unique identity of its own in Old Hyderabad. On 17th March 2009 he was honoured with an award by Osmania University's Urdu Department as a prominent and distinguished Osmanian.

He was a sincere lover and well wisher of Muslim culture and civilisation, a great religious personality, lover of Urdu language and literature, a man of humility with a sense of service to humanity. His active role in the progress and promotion  of Urdu cannot be forgotten. During his last years he used to see poor patients free at his residence and treat the deserving patients free. Till two days before his death he had been treating his patients. (Translated from Urdu)

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-30 November 2009 on page no. 18

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