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Veteran publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed dies

Veteran publisher Mohiuddin Ahmed, the founder of University Press Limited, has died at the age of 77.

Ahmed breathed his last at 12:59 am on Tuesday, said his daughter Mahrukh Mohiuddin, a director of The University Press Limited (UPL), reports bdnews24.com.

“He had suffered from Parkinson’s for 20 years. He also had complications related to old age and was undergoing treatment at Evercare Hospital,” she said.

Ahmed had previously contracted COVID-19, but had recovered from it.

His funeral prayer service will be held at Azad Mosque in Gulshan after the Zuhr prayers, his family said.

Born in Feni in 1944, Mohiuddin Ahmed graduated from the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication at Dhaka University. He went to Punjab University for further studies in journalism. Afterwards, he joined the Pakistan Times as an apprentice.

In 1988, Ahmed was honoured with the degree ‘cultural doctorate’ on publishing management by the international office of World University in the US.

He was the editor of the Pakistan wing of Oxford University Press (OUP).

On his return to an independent Bangladesh in 1972, he took over as the chief executive officer of the Oxford University Press Dhaka branch.

When the OUP closed their Dhaka branch in 1975, it offered Mohiuddin Ahmed the chance to join its Karachi office as editor-at-large. He turned down the offer and eventually established his own publishing company University Press Limited or UPL for short.

UPL generally publishes textbooks and reference books. It has published books and research reports authored by numerous noted academics and researchers.

Under the leadership of Ahmed, UPL has received the National Book Centre award 16 times since 1981.

He was among 17 publishers from around the world honoured with a gold medal by the prime minister of Norway for their contributions to environmental development in 1991.

Ahmed published the Unfinished Memoir of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 2012, an incomplete autobiography which Bangabandhu had penned during his days in prison from 1966 to 1969.

He also arranged to publish the memoir in India and Pakistan in English and Urdu.

Bangladesh Academic and Creative Publishers Association honoured him with the title of publisher emeritus in 2014. Ahmed also authored two books and edited anthologies of stories and articles.