Maulvi Tamizuddin Khan

The Test of Time - my life and days

Editor’s Note

The completion of The Test of Time by Maulvi Tamizuddin Khan (1899-1963) has taken an unusually long time. Maulvi Khan had himself written his life stories and experiences covering the period upto 1926, but could not complete them. He, however, left detailed notes about events, and his own involvement’s therein, for the period from 1926 to 1962. Some of us took upon ourselves the responsibility of re-constructing the events and happenings during this period, based on his notes as well as by drawing upon other information’s, documents and our own experience of close association with him.

Chapter I to IV are in Maulvi Khan’s own writing, and we have left them as they were. The rest of the volume, including the introductory chapter, is the outcome of our attempt to build a consistent and continuous story of his life. In making this attempt, we have been quite conscious of our shortcomings and inadequacies, which will be obvious from a comparative perusal of the portion of the text written by Maulvi Khan himself and the portion compiled by us.

Maulvi Khan started writing his memoirs towards the end of the fifties and continued/working on it until about the end of 1961. He made an extensive study of available literature covering events happening till then, and put in hard work despite his indifferent health. He must have had discussions on his work with many of his friends and colleagues; one person with whom he had frequent and extensive discussions is Mr. Abdur Razzaq, now National Professor attached to the Department of Political Science, University of Dhaka. I have had the unique opportunity of sitting through many of these discussion sessions, which has enabled me to have a clearer perspective of the events as recorded in the memoirs.

For completing the memoirs, the events since 1926 had to be recounted on the basis of the extensive but incomplete notes left by Maulvi Khan. This has proved to be an inherently difficult task for someone who has seen the developments from a distance, obviously with his own eyes and understanding of these matters. Surely, Maulvi Khan’s own interpretation of matters could have been different, based on his masterly analysis of events and marshalling of facts; even then we ventured into the project because this was the only way of completing the memoirs and making it available in print.

Many friends and relatives have inspired and actively helped in the compilation of this volume and its publication. The prime movers in this effort have been Maulvi Khan’s three daughters – Fatema, Kulsum and Razia. My son Najmu and daughters Simeen and Zareen have also helped in various ways, not least by keeping me constantly reminded of my duty and responsibility in the matter. My two sons-in-law, Wahid and Fakhruddin, and daughter Zareen have gone through the draft several times and made important improvements. Fakhruddin has been especially helpful in preparing parts of the manuscript and in overseeing the publication matters and without his help the publication would not have been possible.

But for these acts of willing help and cooperation, the volume would not have seen the light of the day. Finally, we must acknowledge with deep gratitude the financial support provided by the Tamizuddin Khan Trust for the publication of this volume. The Tamizuddin Khan Trust, Dhaka, has undertaken publication of this volume.

August 19,  1989

Mirza Nurul Huda


57, Road 6A, Dhanmondi


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