Mohiuddin Ahmed no more
The history of the country's publishing industry will be incomplete without him. In fact, Mohiuddin Ahmed will be at the centre.
For years after years, the veteran publisher actively contributed to the book development activities in Bangladesh. Through his talent and relentless hard work, he helped introduce to the world books and other works being accomplished here, bringing international recognition for the industry.
An editor and founder of University Press Limited (UPL), a leading publisher, Mohiuddin passed away early yesterday at the age of 77, creating a big void in the publication sector.
He breathed his last at 12:59am, according to his daughter Mahrukh Mohiuddin, director of UPL.
"He has been a brave survivor of Parkinson's disease for nearly 20 years, fought a strong battle with Covid and survived," she wrote in a Facebook post.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has expressed profound shock at the death.
The Emeritus Publisher was laid to rest at the capital's Banani graveyard following his namaz-e-janaza at Gulshan Azad mosque after Zuhr prayer yesterday, said a source close to his family.
Born in Feni, Mohiuddin got involved with publishing early in his life. While a student at Notre Dame College, he was the managing editor of Blue and Gold, a college magazine.
After graduating from Dhaka University and earning a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism, he studied journalism at Punjab University with a Pakistan Council Scholarship. There, he worked as the editor of the Punjab University Chronicle.
After completing his MA, he joined Pakistan Times as an apprentice journalist.
Within the first two months at the job, he got an offer to join the Department of Journalism, Punjab University, as an assistant lecturer in Mass Communication and Public Relations.
Mohiuddin worked as "Editor for Pakistan" at Oxford University Press (OUP) from 1969 to 1972.
On his return to independent Bangladesh, he served as the chief executive officer of OUP Dhaka branch for two years.
In 1975, when the Dhaka office of OUP was closed down, Mohiuddin decided to start UPL.
Under his leadership, UPL won the National Book Centre Award 16 times since 1981.
In May 1988, he was awarded a cultural doctorate in publishing management by World University's international secretariat at Benson, Arizona, USA. Later, Bangladesh Academic and Creative Publishers' Association bestowed upon him the title Emeritus Publisher. He was also a bold activist against copyright infringement.
Mohiuddin was among the 17 publishers from around the world who were invited to Norway by the country's prime minister in recognition of their work on environmental issues.
Meanwhile, Bangla Academy expressed deep sadness at his death and consoled his bereaved family members.
In a press release, signed by acting director general of Bangla Academy AHM Lokman, Bangla Academy mentioned him as a legend in the world of publication. Through UPL, Mohiuddin Ahmed played a pivotal role in propagating quality books of Bangladesh to the world, read the release.
Commemorating Mohiuddin Ahmed's contribution to the publishing industry, Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK), a rights body, said that his demise was an irreversible loss for the country.
The industry of the country sands upon the dedication and talent of some people. Mohiuddin Ahmed was one of them.
In a press release, Workers Party of Bangladesh said the death of the UPL founder has created a big hollow in the publication sector.