IUML president and seven-time MP, E Ahamed no more

A five-time MLA from Malappuram, Ahamed had even done a stint as the state Industries Minister in the K Karunakaran-led UDF government from 1982-87.
IUML president and seven-time MP, E Ahamed no more
IUML president and seven-time MP, E Ahamed no more
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Seven-time Member of Parliament and Indian Union Muslim League president E Ahamed who was rushed to hospital on Tuesday, following a cardiac arrest during the course of President Pranab Mukherjee’s joint address to both Houses of Parliament passed away at the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital in New Delhi. He was 78. His death was announced at 2.50 am on Wednesday.

Born on 29 April 1938 at Malappuram in Kerala, E Ahamed was the President of the Indian Union Muslim League when he died. He was a member of the Kerala Legislative assembly for 18 years and was a Member of Parliament for more than 25 years.

Ahamed had served for almost a decade (in two separate tenures) as the Union Minister of State for External Affairs in the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government from 2004-14, also making him the Keralite who has been part of a union cabinet for the most number of years.

A man known to have good relations with rules of many Gulf countries, Ahamed has played a key role in many talks and negotiations.

He also handled the additional charge of the Union HR Ministry for a very short period in 2011-12.

After graduating from the Government Brennen College in Thalassery, he later went on to obtain another degree in law from the Government Law College in Thiruvananthapuram. During his time at the Brennan College, he worked as a reporter for 'Chandrika', the IUML's newspaper. A student politician, Ahamed was elected the General Secretary of Muslims Students' Federation in the early years.

A lawyer by profession, Ahamed practised at the Kerala High Court in Kochi and the district court in Thalassery. He won his first election as MLA from Kannur in 1967and there has been no stopping him ever since.

He has contested from various constituencies in Northern Kerala like Thanoor, Manjeri, Ponnani and Malappuram.

Other major appointments included stints as the Founding Chairman of the Kerala State Rural Development Board (1971-77) and as Executive Chairman of Kerala Small Scale Industries Development Corporation (1979-80).

A member of several Parliamentary Committees, the veteran leader was nominated as Chairman of the High Level Monitoring Mechanism between India and Qatar in 2011.

Chosen as the emissary of the then (late) Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in GCC countries, Ahamed also had the distinction of having represented India in the United Nations ten times.

The widely-travelled leader had authored four books in both English and Malayalam. His wife Zuhara had predeceased him. He is survived by two sons and a daughter.

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