| A well-wisher pays last respects to Ismail Hussain on Monday. Picture by UB Photos |
Nov. 19: Litterateur Ismail Hussain died at Gauhati Medical College and Hospital today around 1.30pm after a prolonged fight with liver illness. He was 65.
On November 13, Hussain had been admitted to the hospital with liver problems and infections, said GMCH superintendent Ramen Talukdar. Prior to that, he underwent treatment at a private hospital.
He is survived by his wife and two sons.
Born in 1947 at Borpalli village in Barpeta district, Hussain did his graduation from M.C. College in Barpeta. He left his master’s course (at Gauhati University) midway to join a government job. He left this job after some time to become a teacher and later joined the Assam secretariat. He retired in 2006 and was living in the Hatigaon area of the city.
Hussain was known for his tireless efforts in creating awareness about literature among the people living on the chars. Throughout his life, he constantly wrote on the life, economy and culture of the char areas and tried his best for the uplift of people living there.
Hussain had several books to his credit, including Socio Cultural Life of Char People, Paul Robeson and Ganaxilpi Abu Bahar. He has edited three books — Char Saporir Jiwan Sarjya, Jananeta Ataur Rahman and Char Saporir Galpa Xankalon.
Chief minister Tarun Gogoi offered his condolences over the author’s death. He said Hussain’s demise was an irreparable loss to the state.
President of Char Sapori Sahitya Parishad Hafiz Ahmed said because of Hussain’s efforts a systematic study on Assamese literature and language had become possible among the char residents. “He (Hussain) worked to create a bridge between the indigenous Assamese people and people living in the char areas,” he said.
In 1983, the Congress urged Hussain to contest the Assembly election from Baghbor constituency and in 1991 the CPM asked him to contest from the Jonia constituency. “But in both cases he, who believed in ‘people politics’ rather than ‘party politics’, refused to contest,” said Ahmed.
Since the formation of the Char Sapori Sahitya Parishad, Hussain had been its adviser, Ahmed said. “In fact, the Parishad was like his grandson.”
Hussain’s elder son, Sahjahan, is the president of Chatra Mukti Sangram Samiti, the student wing of the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti.