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Dr Shafeeque Ansari and his contribution to Jamia Millia Islamia

In Dr Shafeeque's death, we have lost a dear friend, a committed researcher and a faithful faculty of Jamia Millia Islamia

Tuesday April 27, 2021 4:08 PM, Prof. Furqan Qamar

Dr Shafeeque Jamia Millia

I am yet to put myself together to believe that Professor Shafeeque Ahmad Ansari, an eminent researcher at the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Basic Sciences and director of the Internal Quality Assurance Cell (IQAC) of Jamia Millia Islamia is no more amidst us.

In the morning on Friday last, someone posted that he was in a hospital at Faridabad and that Dr Zubaida was looking after him. I could see the message in the afternoon and offered my prayers and wishes for his full and speedy recovery. Within minutes, we got the saddest news of the season that he succumbed to the illness and was no more.

Shafeeque Saheb was so full of life, so young at heart and so energetic that no one could have ever thought in their wildest imagination that we would lose him so soon.

We believe that the life on this earth is temporary and one day we shall have to bid adieu - each one of us with no exception. We have come from the almighty Allah and toward Him shall we be returned. But we undergo tremendous pain and sufferings to find a bright young promising life cut short so soon.

Also Read | Dr Shafeeque Ahmed Ansari – Mentor of Budding Scientists laid to rest in Malegaon

I came in contact with Shafeeque Saheb only very recently. When I saw Jamia appearing so prominently in all rankings and accreditation, I got curious to know the person and the team behind the collection, collation, crunching, analysing and presentation of the data that determines place in the ranking. It was then that I was introduced to Shafeeq Saheb.

I was so thoroughly impressed by his approach and the meticulous way of gathering, storing, processing and retrieving data on all the needed dimensions. In a large, complex and multidimensional and multidisciplinary university of a hundred year history it is not easy to collect all the data and to convince all to come and be on the same page at any point of time. But Shafeeque Saheb had this remarkable ability to take every one along - the bosses, the seniors and the juniors.

But what won my heart was his enthusiasm, optimism and positivity. He loved doing his job and was willing to shoulder any amount of responsibilities that too not only happily but readily. He would smilingly oblige you, and at the same tine be also grateful as if you were extending favour to him. These qualities were innate to him and came naturally and endeared him to one and all.

Also Read | Dr Mukhtar Ahmad Ansari: A Committed Nationalist, Founder and 2nd Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia

He was well informed, generally aware across wide spectrum of disciplines and extremely resourceful. I once needed specific bibliographic and citation software. I just checked with him as to whether the university subscribes the same. The university has not but Shafeeque Saheb knew which institution in his circle of influence had Multiuser licence and arranged the same for me. I was so obliged. But he smiled in his usual way and just said any time…

These days, he was fully occupied, I would say rather obsessed to get the second round of NAAC accreditation of Jamia. He had taken all the necessary approvals and had uploaded the data. He had already consulted a large number of people within and outside the Jamia and was fully confident that this time the university would get A++ with 4.65 score. Sadly the pandemic delayed the peer team visit and took his life before he could see his labour bear the fruit.

Also Read | Maulana Mohammad Ali Jauhar: Founder and First Vice Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia

Shafeeque Saheb was not only good at guiding and running the IQAC of the university as a well-oiled machine. He was equally good, rather one of the best, in his discipline. He had a large number of highly cited publications with high impact. He had taught for a few years in a premier university in South Korea and had maintained a large network of peers in India and across the world.

In his death, we have lost a dear friend, a committed researcher and a faithful faculty of the university. We shall miss him always.

May Allah Tabarak o Taala bestow upon him all His pleasure and mercies and give courage to Dr Zubaida Saheba and all other family members. Aameen.

[The writer of this piece, Prof Furqan Qamar, is Professor of Management, Centre for Management Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. He has earlier served as vice-chancellor of University of Rajasthan and first vice-chancellor of Central University of Himachal Pradesh. Originally published on his blog.]


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