Publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed had created a place of trust for authors and publishers

In Memory of the Death Anniversary

File Photo: Publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed

Dhaka Note Desk

The late publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed, who was a trusted figure among authors and publishers, had created a space of trust between them. He used to meticulously keep records to honor the agreements with authors for book sales. His accounts were written in Bengali multiplied by the years. At the beginning of each year, he would make efforts to settle the authors’ honorarium by Pahela Baishakh. And he would either personally deliver or send these honorarium through his children. 

Mohiuddin Ahmed’s eldest son, Professor Kamaluddin Ahmed, described his father as a distinguished publisher.

Among the creative publishers of the country, Mohiuddin Ahmed, through his establishment Ahmed Publishing House, contributed significantly to the development of creative literature. His contribution to the formation of a thoughtful society is noteworthy. His role in the success achieved through the Language Movement is memorable. Mohiuddin Ahmed contributed significantly to publications based on the history of the Liberation War. His 34th death anniversary will be observed on March 15. 

Professor Kamaluddin Ahmed said, “The royalties of those authors who published their books in our publishing house were often sent to them by me, not by employees.”

Additionally, at the beginning of each year, if there were any doubts about how many copies of whose books were sold last year, my father would show detailed accounts from his ledger.

Kamaluddin said, “My father had a mindset of giving back to society.” He was involved in village development activities. He contributed significantly to society through his role as a publisher. He donated to the establishment of several schools, colleges, roadside madrasas, mosques, libraries, and hostels.

Mohiuddin Ahmed was born in a prestigious Muslim family in the village of Biteshwar in the Daudkandi upazila of Comilla district in January 1919. His father, the late Altafuddin Ahmed Bhuiyan, and mother, the late Mst. Asia Khatun. 

In 1984, he was awarded the by Jatiya Grantha Kendro’ for his creative work, and in 1986, he was honored with the ‘Bangla Academy Award’ at the Ekushey Book Fair.

Mohiuddin Ahmed was a lifelong positive  conversationalist, humanitarian, and a person dedicated to religion. His personal life had an influence on his family life. He raised his children according to his own ideals. He had two sons and six daughters. He passed away on March 15, 1990.

In 2011, a book titled ‘Enlightened Man Mohiuddin Ahmed’ was published by Ahmed Publishing House to preserve the memory and creative work of publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed. In this book, Md. Mohiuddin Ahmed’s work is included alongside many renowned authors of the country.

Dr. Anisuzzaman, a national professor, said in the book, titled ‘A Heartfelt Tribute to Mahiuddin Ahmed’, that there was no secrecy in Mohiuddin’s character, his interests were always visible to everyone.

Titled ‘The Brave Worker Mahiuddin Ahmed’, Dr. Rafiqul Islam, the country’s first Nazrul researcher, said, “He was a lover of books, so publishing books was his profession.” Alongside publishing books, he had a deep interest in various educational materials. He excelled in education and made himself a model, which is rarely seen. That is why he is memorable to us.

Former Director-General of Bangla Academy, Poet Ashraf Siddiqui, titled ‘Pioneer Publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed’, said, “For Muslim readers, he was the pioneer in publishing religious, social, and cultural books suitable for children.”

Poet Mohammad Mahfuzullah in ‘A Literature-Loving Publisher Mahiuddin Ahmed’ said, “He not only published the works of experienced and established writers but also sincerely accepted advice on publishing books and various works from modern and contemporary novice writers.”

Former Director-General of Bangla Academy Mahmud Shah Quereshi, in ‘The Pathbreaking Publisher’, said, “When he founded a publishing company in 1956, this business was very unstable. However, Mohiuddin Ahmed successfully achieved substantial development by focusing on books and supporting materials, maps, charts, etc., and giving importance to his publishing work.”

Literary researcher Mohammad Mizanur Rahman in ‘In the World of Publication, Mohiuddin Ahmed’ said, “Mohiuddin Ahmed is one of the foremost ambassadors of the country’s book publishing art. With untiring efforts, hard work, dedication, and above all, with utmost honesty, he has accumulated a wealth of experience in establishing a sophisticated publication institution in Bangladesh.”

In ‘A Tribute to a Successful Publisher,’ book critic Dr. Rashid Al Farooqi, late professor of the Bengali Department of Chittagong University, said, “Mohiuddin was a simple and modest person by nature – a characteristic that pervaded his entire life.” He is not devoid of any arrogance that is often seen in big businessmen. Hence, every writer trusted him.

In ‘A Tribute to a Successful Publisher’, distinguished book critic Badruddin Nazir said, “Bengali Muslims were proud and maintained that identity with pride. Mohiuddin Ahmed’s identity has also remained the same in the publishing activities. This identity has remained the main focus of his publishing activities.”