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Abdul Majeed Khwaja

(1885 – 1962) – (Uttar Pradesh)

Abdul Majeed Khwaja (Aged 77) an Indian lawyer, educationist, social reformer, and freedom fighter was born in 1885 in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India. In 1920, Khwaja along with others founded Jamia Millia Islamia and later served as its vice chancellor and chancellor.

Being a liberal Muslim, Khwaja was deeply committed to Mahatma Gandhi’s ethical approach of nonviolent resistance. He actively opposed the partition of India in 1947 and dedicated his entire life to promoting Hindu-Muslim harmony, making a lasting contribution to the education of Indian Muslims in the modern era.

Khwaja Muhammad Yusuf was one of the earliest supporters of the Aligarh Movement under the leadership of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, the founder of the famous Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College which later developed into the Aligarh Muslim University. Khwaja Yusuf donated large sums to the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College Fund Committee.

Furthermore, Khwaja Muhammad Yusuf was also very active in the affairs of the Scientific Society founded earlier in 1864 by Sir Syed to translate Western works into Urdu. He studied in Cambridge where he first saw and heard Barrister Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi of South African fame, who was then a great admirer of British liberalism.

In response to the call of Mahatma Gandhi, Khwaja gave up his practice in 1919 and joined the Civil Disobedience Movement as well as the Khilafat movement, serving six months of imprisonment. The period from 1943 to 1948 was very stressful for Abdul Majeed Khwaja due to the demand for the creation of Pakistan based on the two-nation theory, causing him great anguish. Despite suffering a heart attack in 1942, he returned to the political arena and devoted all his energies to preserving the unity of India.

However, for Khwaja, the assassination of Gandhi on 30 January 1948 was a shock he could never overcome, and thereafter he almost faded out of active election politics in independent India. He passed away in 1962 in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India. However, for Khwaja, the assassination of Gandhi on 30 January 1948 was a shock he could never overcome, and thereafter he almost faded out of active election politics in independent India. He passed away in 1962 in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh, India.