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25 October 2013

Hakeem Muhammad Saeed -- International Expert Of Eastern Medicine

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By Rohail Khan

Asia’s most renowned Doctor, Scholar, Scientist, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, and Philanthropist, Hakeem Muhammad Saeed (B.Pham, M.Pharm. Ph.D) was a larger than life person. His multi-dimensional charismatic personality and fifty years’ services are fondly remembered even after fifteen years of his tragic assassination on 17th October 1998.

He was born on 9th January 1920 in Delhi, British India, in an educated and religious Urdu-speaking family. His forefathers and family were associated with the herbal medicine business, and had established the Hamdard Waqf Laboratories during the First World War.

Young Saeed attended a local school in Old Delhi and acquired mastery over Arabic, Persian, Urdu, English and Quranic studies. At age 18, he passed the university entrance test with distinction and went on to attend the University of Delhi in 1938. There, young Saeed obtained a B.Pharm and a B.Sc in medicinal chemistry in 1942.

Upon his graduation, young Saeed joined Hamdard Waqf Laboratories and participated in herbal research and formulating new medicines. In 1945, he obtained M.Pharm with distinction from the University of Delhi.

Following the independence of Pakistan on 14th August 1947, Hakeem Saeed settled in Karachi, established Hamdard Laboratories, and served as its managing director until his death in 1998.

In early 1952, Hakeem Saeed went to Turkey where he attended medical school at Anqara University and obtained a Ph.D in Applied Pharmacy in 1953. He returned to Pakistan and devoted his entire life to medicine research and social work.

Under his leadership, Hamdard Laboratories expanded branches all over Pakistan and stands out as Asia’s largest factory of traditional and herbal medicines. Hamdard Laboratories gradually diversified into medical research, higher education, publishing, and social work.

In 1985, Hakeem Muhammad Said founded “Hamdard University”, where he served as its first Vice-Chancellor and Professor of Medicine until his demise in 1998.

The most auspicious activity of his life is the establishment of “Madinatul Hikmah” - City of Wisdom.

Madintaul Hikmah, spread over thousand of acres outside Karachi, comprises of Hamdard University with affiliate institutions notably: Hamdard College of Medicine and Dentistry, Hamdard College of Eastern Medicine, Hafiz Ilyas Institute of Herbal Sciences, Hamdard Institute of Education and Social Sciences, Hamdard Institute of Management Sciences, Hamdard Institute of Information Technology, Hamdard School of Law, Hamdard School of Engineering, Science and Technology, Hamdard Public School and Hamdard Village School. Bait-al-Hikmah Library, part of Madinat-al-Hikmah, is one of the biggest and best-stocked libraries of South Asia.

A true patriot and loyalist of Quaid-e-Azam, Hakeem Saeed was always optimistic and enthusiastic about Pakistan and her future potential. He was a popular figure among both children and the youth. He started monthly “Naunehal Digest” and through his writings educated the growing children – future architects of Pakistan.

Hakeem Saeed authored over 200 books on natural and herbal medicine, philosophy, modern sciences, health and fitness, religion, literature, and social work.

In his later years, from 1993 to 1996, Hakeem Saeed served as “Governor of Sindh” and carried out extensive overhaul and reformation of the health and education departments.

In his lifetime, Hakeem Saeed treated various heads of states, dignitaries, and thousands of patients from all over the world. He arranged recognition of alternative medicine at various international bodies, particularly its accreditation with the World Health Organization (WHO).

[Rohail Khan, a Canadian-Pakistani with strong parental roots in India as well, is a Senior Banker and CFO based at Jeddah. He is also Chairman, Urdu Academy International (UAI), Washington, D.C. He can be contacted at rohailkhan00@gmail.com]

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