People from all walks of life yesterday paid rich tributes to eminent scholar and philosopher Sardar Fazlul Karim who breathed his last in a hospital of the capital early yesterday.
His body was first kept at the Communist Party of Bangladesh office at Paltan around 11:00am and then on the Bangla Academy premises around 12:15pm.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's special assistant Mahbubul Hoque Shakil placed a wreath at the coffin of the professor on her behalf.
Cultural Affairs Minister Asaduzzaman Noor, Bangla Academy Director General Shamsuzzaman Khan and Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid also paid respects.
Among others, former foreign minister Dipu Moni, CPB President Mujahidul Islam Selim, Professor Emeritus Anisuzzaman, Prof Serajul Islam Chowdhury, former vice chancellor of Jahangirnagar University Prof Anwar Hossain and cultural personality Mamunur Rashid paid homage to the scholar at the Bangla Academy.
His body was then taken to the Dhaka University central mosque for a namaz-e-janaza around 1:00pm. DU Vice Chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique paid respects to him there.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith and Prof Zillur Rahman Siddiqui, among others, took part in the namaz-e-janaza, after which he was laid to eternal rest beside his wife at Azimpur graveyard.
Suffering from old-age complications, Prof Karim was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of Samorita Hospital on Saturday evening. He died at 12:45am, at the age of 89.
One of the most prominent teachers of Dhaka University and a leading intellectual of the country, Prof Karim left behind a host of admirers and well-wishers to mourn his death.
He was born to a lower-middle class family of Barisal in 1925 and led a simple and humble life. At the age of 21, he became a lecturer at DU in 1946.
Karim got involved in progressive politics in his student life. Perceived by the then ruling classes as an enemy of Pakistan, he spent almost all 24 years of Pakistani rule in prison in four phases.
He was elected to the East Bengal provincial assembly on Jukto Front's ticket in 1954 while in prison.
A philosopher, translator, essayist and political activist, he participated in a 58-day hunger strike by political prisoners demanding humane treatment.
His work on Plato remains a point of reference for students of politics and philosophy in
It was Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Prof Abdur Razzaq who ensured Sardar Fazlul Karim's return to Dhaka University as a teacher soon after independence.