Prof Rizwan Qaiser passes away


Prof Rizwan Qaiser passes away

Professor Rizwan Qaiser of Jamia Millia Islamia is no more, according to sources.

A few days ago he was hospitalised after testing Covid positive. He was in a hospital for days, said a source, adding that the cause of his death is yet to be known.

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Prof Rizwan Qaiser was a known face at university and was seen at times on television show debating on Muslim issues. He was a leading voice among the historians of Modern India.

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Professor Rizwan Qaiser was the Director of the Center for Comparative Religions and Civilizations at Jamia. He joined Jamia in 1989 and for years was also a post bearer of Jamia Teachers’ Association (JTA).

Born and educated in Munghyr, Bihar, he came to Jawaharlal Nehru University in 1980 to study history and his interest was in history of communalism in colonial India; Gandhian politics; history of the Indian National Movement and Muslim identities in Colonial India; Politics of language in colonial and post-colonial India.

Jamia Millia Islamia English department faculty member Anuradha Ghosh wrote: “The loss of Professor Rizwan Qaiser is the loss of an academic whose competence in modern history matched the resilience with which he resisted any kind of democratic or human right violation.  His intellectual rigour, his dynamism and fervour made him a natural leader among the teaching community, both within and outside Jamia.

“As his colleague and friend, I pray for him, his family and friends, and take solace in the fact that no viral apocalypse can take away his fiery spirit, and his thoughts and deeds would remain an inspiration for all of us who loved and admired his courage and uprightness.”

Author and columnist Syed Ubaidur Rahman said it is unbelievable that Professor Rizwan Qaiser is no more. A month ago he was part of an online debate on a book and the Professor lead from the front as he was well prepared.

Jamia community and those residing in his neighbourhood Johri Farm said the news of his death has devastated them. Aseem Asha said he used to go with him on walk after dinner.

The health status of his wife and son is not known with some claiming that they too were tested Covid positive something which could not be independently verified by this portal.

Professor Rizwan Qaiser was a regular contributor to national dailies and magazines.

Waseem Alam, who did his BA and MA in History from Jamia Millia Islamia under the guidance of Rizwan Quaiser, said: “Last time we spoke to him was a few days ago. We got a call from him and he was looking for a hospital bed in Escorts. He told us that his wife (Professor at Jamia Political Science department) and his only son were quarantined in house. Later on I came to know that he got a bed in Jamia Hamdard. Very little is known about the health condition of his other family members. The Professor was a heart patient and had three stunts.”

Navaid Hamid, president of All India Muslim Majlis e Mushawarat, wrote: “Shocked to know about demise of Prof Rizwan Qaiser of Department of History & Culture JMI.  A compose, civilised and articulate full of humility and depth Professor Qaiser was friend for more than two decades. He was a gem among academics and a staunch defender of civil liberties and we have participated together in numerous agitations in defence of human rights and constitutional probability.”