Urdu litterateur Prof. Abdul Qavi Desnavi passes away in Bhopal

By Pervez Bari, TwoCircles.net,

Bhopal: Famous Urdu litterateur Prof. Abdul Qavi Desnavi passed away here early on Thursday morning after protracted illness. He was about 81 years old. Prof. Desnavi’s end came at about 5 am in a private hospital where he was admitted following complaints of old age related diseases. He is survived by his wife, three sons and four daughters and a large number of relatives and literary friends to mourn his loss.

Prof. Desnavi was laid to rest in Bada Bagh graveyard in the evening after “Maghrib” prayers wherein a large number of literary personalities and elite of the town participated in his funeral procession.

Prof. Abdul Qavi Desnavi sitting (right) with his son. Other family members are in the background

He belonged to the family of great Muslim scholar Syed Sulaiman Nadwi, who was one of the eminent historian and the greatest biographers of Muhammad (PBUH), the Prophet of Islam during his times. He was the son of late Prof. Syed Saeed Raza, who was Professor of Arabic & Persian in St. Xavier College, Bombay where his brother Prof. Muhi Raza was also a professor.

Born on November 1, 1930 in Desna village in block Asthawan in Nalanda district of Bihar, Prof. Desnavi has authored more than 50 books on Urdu literature. His specialization was Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, Mirza Ghalib, Allama Iqbal and Bhopal. He was recipient of several awards. He received Senior Fellowship from the Union Ministry of Culture. His great treatise was a voluminous book on one of India’s frontline freedom fighter and first Union Education Minister Maulana Abul Kalam Azad over 900 pages titled “Hayat-e-Abul Kalam Azad” which he penned in the year 2000. It was acclaimed nationally and internationally.

It may be pointed out here that many present era Urdu litterateurs such as Muzaffar Hanfi, Javed Akhtar, Khalid Mehmood, Naumaan Khan, Mushtaq Singh etc. were under his tutelage during their student days in Bhopal and are now sparkling in the Urdu world. Under his guidance many students attained Ph.D. degrees.

Prof. Desnavi had his primary education in Arrah town of Bihar state. After completing his higher education in St. Xavier College, Bombay, he joined Urdu Department of Urdu in local Saifia Post Graduate College in February 1961. He rose to become Professor and Head of the Urdu Department of Saifia College and became well-known literary figure at the all India level in the Urdu world. He retired in 1990. He was secretary of Madhya Pradesh Urdu Academy (1991-92), member of All India Anjuman Taraqui Urdu Board and also chairman of Board of Studies in Bhopal University.

The most widely held works by Prof. Abdul Qavī Desnavī include: Nusk̲h̲ah-yi Bhopal aur Nusk̲h̲ah-yi Bhopal s̲ānī – 1 edition published in 1970 in Urdu and held by 16 libraries worldwide; Naz̲r-e-Tak̲h̲alluṣ (Book) 1 edition published in 1981 in Urdu and held by 16 libraries worldwide; Iqbāl aur Dillī – 1 edition published in 1978 in Urdu and held by 16 libraries worldwide; Talāsh o Taʼas̲s̲ur – 2 editions published in 1976 and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Mut̤ālaʻah-yi G̲h̲ubār-i k̲h̲āt̤ir – 2 editions published between 1980 and 1981 in Urdu and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Critical appreciation of G̲h̲ubār-i k̲h̲āt̤ir, prose work by Abul Kalam Azad, 1888-1958.حيات ابوالكلام آزاد by عبدالقوى دسنوى – 1 edition published in 2000 in Urdu and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Biography of Abūlkalām Āzād, 1888-1958, Indian statesman.بھوپال اور غالب by عبدالقوى دسنوى( Book ) – 1 edition published in 1969 in Urdu and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Mut̤ālaʻah-yi k̲h̲ut̤ūt̤-i G̲h̲ālib – 1 edition published in 1975 and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Iqbāl unnīsvīn̲ ṣadī mein – 1 edition published in 1977 and held by 15 libraries worldwide; Mahdī Ḥasan Ifādī – 1 edition published in 1977 in Urdu and held by 15 libraries worldwide. ([email protected])