Maulana Abul Kalam Azad also know as Maulana Azad. His real name was Abul Kalam Muhiyuddin Ahmed Azad (11 November 1888 – 22 February 1958) was an Indian scholar and a senior political leader of the Indian independence movement. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad needs no introduction. It was as if he was blessed with a revolutionary streak from a young age. In 1912 he started the paper Al-Hilal, which did not hesitate from attacking the colonial rulers. He occupied an important place in the Congress party under Mahatma Gandhi’s guidance, including as the President during the critical years of early and mid 1940s. He served as India’s first Education Minister and it was under his tenure that the first IIT was inaugurated in Kharagpur. Maulana Azad will also be remembered for his steadfast opposition to partition of India. Following India’s independence, he became the first Minister of Education in the Indian government. In 1992 he was posthumously awarded India’s highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna. There is also a theory which suggests that earlier when he was offered Bharat Ratna he promptly declined it saying that it should not be given to those who have been on the selection committee. Later he was awarded posthumously in 1992. He is commonly remembered as Maulana Azad; the word Maulana is an honorific meaning ‘learned man’, and he had adopted Azad (Free) as his pen name. His contribution to establishing the education foundation in India is recognised by celebrating his birthday as “National Education Day” across India.
11th November 2015