Dr Ashraf Siddiqui -- noted poet, folklorist and former director general of Bangla Academy -- passed away due to old-age complications at a hospital in the capital early yesterday.
He was 94.
Chinmoy Bhattacharya, duty manager of Apollo Hospitals, said Dr Ashraf breathed his last around 3:15am at the hospital. He had been undergoing treatment there since February 20 because of respiratory problems.
Dr Siddiqui obtained his PhD in folklore studies from Indiana University in the US. His major works include Taleb Master (1950), Bish Konya (1955), Saat Bhai Champa (1955), Uttar Akasher Tara (1958), Kuchborom Konya (1976), Brikkho Dao Chhaya Dao (1984), Jhor Tufane (1985), Darao Pothikbor (1990) and many more.
From 1976 to 1983, Dr Ashraf served as the director general of Bangla Academy.
For his noteworthy contributions to documentation and research on Bangladeshi folk culture, he received the Bangla Academy Award in 1964 and Ekushey Padak in 1988. He is also a Unesco award recipient.
Dr Ashraf also served as the chairperson of Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha.