I went to Karachi to attend the ceremony of walima of Syed Talha Hassan on Dec 26, 1916. I was free after the function when I received the heart rending message that Professor Abdul Ghafoor had died.

I had a desire to visit him during my visit to Karachi. I informed his son Tariq that I would call on Professor Sahib on Dec 27. But I couldn’t imagine that I had to go to his home for a funeral instead of asking about his health. I had to say good bye forever.

Prof Sahib was an asset for the country and the nation. He rendered great services in the fields of teaching, education, politics and preaching the religion. He was born in Bareli, a famous center of education and religion of UP on 11 June 1927. He got the a degree of M. Com from Lucknow University and started his career as a lecturer at Islamia College Lucknow in the same year. Next year, he came to Karachi and joined a private trade institution and served in its accounts department. In addition, he joined Urdu College for teaching Accounts and Trade and was here till 1961. After that he taught in the Institute of Industrial Accounts, Institute of Chartered Accounts and Jinnah Institute of Industrial Accounts. He continued teaching up to 1972. After that he performed the responsibilities of an MNA. He also served Jammat-e-Islami at the same time.

He was elected as an MNA in 1970 from Karachi. Nine members of JI were elected in the elections of 1977 in spite of rigging. He had played an important role in parliament and always defended democracy. He also struggled for the movements of Khatam-e-Nabuwat and Nizam-e-Mustafa. He had been the Gen Sec of UDF and PNA (1977-1979), served as a Federal Minister for Production (1978-1979) and had been a member of Senate from 2002 to 2005. He wrote eight books on the political circumstances of Pakistan. These books are an authentic source to understand the history of Pakistan.

My first relation with Professor Sahib is of student and teacher. Although I did not receive education directly from him, but when I was studying at Government College of Commerce and Economics, he was teaching at Urdu College and other institutions. He was a close friend of my teacher Mateen Ansari and that is how I got a chance to meet him. Then I knew that he had been my examiner in B.Com. He became my teacher in this way.

He was senior to me in JI. I learnt many things from him both in national politics and in the life of the movement. In 1964 I had a chance to live with him in the prison cell with other companions. I found him a delicate, kind, honest, loving and selfless person. A person who treats his youngers in this way that it becomes difficult to differentiate between them. The love, kindness and honour that he gave me during the last 60 years is precious. The chief characteristics of his personality were simplicity, humility, affection and love. There was no artificiality in his life style. He always talked politely whatever the conditions. He remained polite even in the condition of disagreement. He always respected others. He preferred the collective interest. He treated others with respect and love. That’s why he was respected by everyone. His role in the political life of the country is great. He worked for the progress of democracy and Islam wisely, bravely and selflessly. In 1972 when Pakistan lost Bangladesh, the struggle for the protection of Pakistan was started in and out of assembly. He played a memorable role in this connection.

The results of the elections of 1970 affected the Islamic movement and its well wishers greatly. He faced the situation courageously. He and the opposition of that time played a historical role in formulating the constitution of 1973. It was feared that civil dictatorship could take hold of the country. But a little opposition consisted of Prof. Abdul Ghafoor, Maulana Zafar Ahmad Ansari, Maulana Mufti Mahmoud, Mr. Sher Baaz Mazari and Maulana Shah Ahmad Norani accepted that constitution as something temporary. They compelled the Govt to make a constitutional committee and make a new constitution. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Hafiz Pirzada and Mahmoud Ali Qasoori also worked for it. It was a miracle that the constitution of 1973 was formulated. This constitution has saved democracy in Pakistan in spite of all conspiracies.

Professor Sahib played a vital role in the whole process. He organised the political forces forgetting every difference. He made alliances for political purposes. The personalities like Altaf Gohar and Khalid Ishaq expressed that Pakistan could progress by leaps and bounds if it was led by a person like Professor Abdul Ghafoor. Altaf Gohar presented him as a needed PM of Pakistan in his article in Dawn. Everyone was convinced that he had the quality of developing consensus because of his wisdom. He was loved and respected by all.