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Last edited by Sameen Ahmed Khan
November 12, 2011 | History

A.R. Zafar

26 July 1926 - 17 July 2011

Nawab Abdul Rafeeq Zafar was the youngest son of Mohammadi Begum and Nawab Mohammed Abdul Quader of Kholapur. He was born on 26th July 1926 in Kholapur (a village, Pin Code: 444802, in Amraoti District, Maharashtra, Map to Kholapur). His father died in 1943 when A. R. Zafar was just a teenager. With a rich family heritage, he completed high school and then migrated to Hyderabad in 1947, to pursue higher education at Osmania University (OU), Hyderabad. He spent rest of his life in Hyderabad.

Professor Abdul Rafeeq Zafar was one of the senior most limnologists of India. He has been working on various aspects of freshwaters around Hyderabad since 1952 and has traveled all over India and Europe to get himself acquainted with the lakes of various climatic regions. Most of his academic career and education, commencing with his Bachelor of Science, was cultivated at Osmania University (OU). Dr. Zafar did PhD in 1955. The PhD of Dr. Adul Rafeeq Zafar was under the supervision of renowned Phycologist & Ecologist, Professor Mahendar Raj Suxena (Picture). He was the first person from the progeny of Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ghani Saheb Saudagar (died, 1897, 1315 Hijri, Picture) of Kholapur not only to do PhD, but the first one to go to College. He joined the Department of Botany as lecturer in 1957. Dr. Zafar held many distinguished Fellowships: Research Fellow (Government of India, 1952-54); National Research Fellow (Government of India, 1955-58); UNESCO Fellow (UNESCO, 1961); and Sponsored Fellow (University Grants Commission, 1966).

Prof. A.R. Zafar has held several responsible positions, viz., Chairman, Board of Studies and Head, Department of Botany, Osmania University (1983-87); Member, Andhra Pradesh Water Pollution Control Board (APPCB, Logo, 1978-81); Visiting Professors, University of Kashmir, Srinagar (1986-87); and Member, Advisory Committee on Environmental Planning and Coordination, Government of India Dr. Zafar became the Head of the Department of Botany in 1983. Dr. Zafar superannuated as the Head of the Department of Botany, in 1986 after a long and distinguished teaching and research career. Even after his retirement he actively participated in various educational committees in India and abroad. These include, Mumtaz Degree & P.G College, Hyderabad; Asafia High School, Hyderabad; Centre of Post-Graduate Studies and Research, Anwarul Uloom College, Hyderabad.

Professor Zafar gave numerous Radio Talks on a range of topics including: Education; Science Popularization; Environment; and the Lakes of Hyderabad. These were broadcast by the All India Radio (AIR).

Dr. Zafar was a staunch promoter of the Ecosystem Approach and hence strongly supported the Aquatic Ecosystem Health and Management Society, (AEHMS) and its global activities and publications. He was an active member of the Editorial Board of its Journal: Aquatic Ecosystem Health & Management, as well as the Ecovision World Monograph Series.

He had travelled abroad attending international conferences in the UK, France and Switzerland. He also served as a member of several committees as advisors such as: the Advisory Committee on Environmental Planning and Coordination, Government of India; Research Guide for Limnology and General Ecology, Osmania University, since 1964; Vice-President, Indian Botanical Society (IBS, Logo) in 1986; Andhra Pradesh Water Pollution Control Board (APPCB, 1978-81); and Convener of the WHO Workshop on Bio-indicators of Pollution. His research career left behind a legacy which will last for a long time in the field of Indian ecology and limnology. His outstanding work on the Projects will never be forgotten:

Hussain Sagar Lake,
(Sponsored by Hyderabad Urban Development Authority (HUDA, 1973).
Man and Biosphere International Project on the lakes and their environment in the vicinity of the Hyderabad Metropolis,
(Sponsored by the Government of India, 1971-76).

Dr. Zafar was an excellent teacher and extremely devoted researcher. He supervised and advised several PhD students of hydrobiology.

He published several papers (see some selected samples below) in international journals, including a contribution to the Encyclopaedia of Lakes, Published by UNESCO. He also edited an important manual entitled The biological indices and indicators of water pollution, sponsored by the Central Board for the Prevention and Control of Water Pollution. Dr. Zafar recently edited a book (Zafar et al., 2005) which provides the first comprehensive account of limnology in the Indian subcontinent and covers a variety of aquatic environments. It will be invaluable for students, researchers and managers.

Dr. Zafar was not only a great professor and ecologist but also a great philanthropist and a fine citizen concerned with the welfare of society. His contributions will last for a long time to come in the annals of Indian limnology and he will always be remembered and missed by a great many people.

Throughout his stay in Hyderabad, Nawab Abdul Rafeeq Zafar was an enthusiastic participant of the Circles for the Study of the Quran (Halqua Mutalai Quran). These Study Circles, which boasted many eminent members, are still functioning. They drew scholars from Department of Arabic, Department of History and the Department of Islamic Studies, of Osmania University (OU), among other institutions. Thus Professor Abdul Rafeeq Zafar, was able to interact one-to-one with renowned Islamic Scholars including: Manazir Ahsan Gilani, Abu Nasr Muhammad Khalidi, among many others. The contemporary scholars include, Shahid Ali Abbasi who is the Rector of the Centre for Islamic Education, Hyderabad. Professor Abdul Rafeeq Zafar served as the Secretary of the Halqua Mutalai Quran, for about two decades.

Nawab Abdul Rafeeq Zafar had cancer with metastasis (including: liver, portal vain, gall-bladder and lungs). He died at 6:53 on the morning of Sunday the 17 July 2011 (14 Shabaan 1432) at his residence in Banjara Hills, Hyderabad. When he breathed his last, his wife, niece Bushra Khan, nephew, Sameen Ahmed Khan and his wife, Noama Khan were present by his side. The Salaat-ut-Janaza (Funeral Prayers) took place after Maghrib, at Masjid Rahmat-e-Alam, Road No. 11, Banjara Hills, Hyderabad. The Salaat-ut-Janaza was conducted by Professor Shahid Ali Abbasi (Picture), who is Professor in the Department of Islamic Studies, University College of Arts & Social Sciences, Osmania University (OU). Professor Shahid Ali Abbasi is also the Rector of the Centre for Islamic Education, Hyderabad. Professor Abdul Rafeeq Zafar was laid to rest on the same evening in the Qabrastan/Makbara (Graveyard) attached to the Masjid Hazrat-e-Bilal, Habshiguda, Hyderabad, India.

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History Created April 30, 2008 · 6 revisions Download catalog record: RDF / JSON

November 12, 2011 Edited by Sameen Ahmed Khan Edited without comment.
November 12, 2011 Edited by Sameen Ahmed Khan Edited without comment.
November 12, 2011 Edited by Sameen Ahmed Khan Added new photo
November 12, 2011 Edited by Sameen Ahmed Khan Edited without comment.
April 30, 2008 Created by an anonymous user initial import