Backed by experience garnered over a quarter of a century as a Lok Sabha Member of Parliament, former Indian Union Muslim League national president, E Ahamed can easily be signified as one who moulded India’s image in West Asia.
As someone who enjoyed a warm and cordial relation with heads of most the countries in West Asia, Ahamed played a significant role in facilitation of the annual Haj pilgrimage for the Muslim devout from India.
Such was the intimate connect he shared with the royal family of Saudi Arabia that Ahamed was one among the very few world leaders to have been invited to the ritualistic washing of Kaaba (considered to be Islam’s holiest site located in Mecca -the birthplace of Prophet Muhammad) conducted in the course of the Haj pilgrimage.
It was Ahamed again who stepped in for diplomatic intervention when in 2004, a group of Indians were held hostage in Iran. When West Asia sought to bring in stringent rules with regard to employment of non-citizens, Ahamed did his best to advocate the cause of thousands of Indians who would otherwise have been rendered jobless.
In his condolence tweet, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was quick to acknowledge Ahamed’s significant role in deepening India’s ties with West Asia.
Terming him a ‘veteran political leader who served the nation with great diligence’, Modi also pointed out the important part played by Ahamed in Kerala’s stride towards progress.