Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Biography

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

About Maulana Abul Kalam

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was born on 11 November, 1888 in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. He was a leading figure in India's struggle for freedom and a noted writer, poet and journalist. He adopted the pen name Azad (Free). In his childhood, Azad had a traditional Islamic education, along with training in subjects like mathematics, philosophy, world history and science by tutors at his home. Through his own efforts, he learnt English, along with Western philosophy, history and contemporary politics. He visited countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Egypt, Syria and Turkey. He opposed the partition of Bengal in 1905.

Azad established the Indian Institute of Technology and also contributed in the foundation of the University Grant Commission.

Personal Life

His real name was Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin, but became known as Maulana Azad. He was born to father Bengali Maulana Muhammad Khairuddin and mother Arab. He was born in Mecca, but the family relocated to Calcutta in 1890. He married Zulaikha Begum when he was thirteen years old.

Literary Work

He established an Urdu weekly newspaper in 1912 named Al-Hilal. It was consequently banned in 1914, following which he started a new journal, the Al-Balagh.

'Ghubar-e-Khatir' is one of his most noted works which he wrote between 1942 and 1946.

He published many works criticising the British rule and advocating self-rule for India. His exhaustive book on India's freedom struggle titled 'India Wins Freedom' was published in 1957.

Political Career

It was as a leader of the Khilafat movement that he became close to Mahatma Gandhi. He became the youngest President of the Indian National Congress in 1923.He always supported the cause of Hindu-Muslim unity and opposed the demand for a separate Muslim state of Pakistan. He was one of the most important leaders behind the Dharasana Satyagraha in 1931. He became the Congress president in 1940 and continued till 1945 and during that time, the Quit India rebellion also came up.

He served in the Constituent Assembly formed to draft India's constitution and was elected to the Lok Sabha in 1952 and in 1957. In 1956, he served as president of the UNESCO General Conference in Delhi.

Facts and Information about Maulana Abul Kalam Azad

Born11 November, 1888
Place of BirthMecca, Hejaz Vilayet, Ottoman Empire (now Saudi Arabia)
FatherMaulana Muhammad Khairuddin
Died22 February, 1958 (aged 69), Delhi
Spouse NameZulaikha Begum
Political CareerIndian National Congress
Awards and honoursBharat Ratna

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Last Updated on : November 15, 2016



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