Noted economist Professor Nurul Islam, former deputy chairman of the first planning commission, died of old age complications in the early hours of Tuesday in Washington DC of the United States.
He was 94.
Bangladesh High Commission in Washington DC sources confirmed it.
Nurul Islam was one of the closest advisors to and confidants of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
He is noted for his part in the liberation war of Bangladesh from Pakistan in the early seventies as well as for his leadership role in the economy from 1972 to 1975 as the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission.
He was a primary contributor to the Six-point demand presented to the West Pakistan government during the struggle for independence.
In 1961, Islam, Rehman Sobhan and Habibur Rehman organized a seminar on the economic disparities between West and East Pakistan which was instrumental in stirring up support for independence.
Islam joined the University of Dhaka as an associate professor of economics department in 1960. In 1965, he left the university to become the director of the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (later Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies), and government cabinet minister as Head of the first Planning Commission of Bangladesh. He returned to Dhaka in 1969.
Islam was a Nuffield Foundation fellow at the London School of Economics and at Cambridge University.
He also served as a Rockefeller fellow at the Netherlands School of Economics, and was a fellow at St Antony’s College, Oxford.
Islam served as the Assistant Director General, Economic and Social Policy Department of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Islam grew up in Chittagong. He completed his IA from Chittagong College.
After studying in Presidency college, Calcutta and the University of Dhaka, he earned his PhD in economics from Harvard University in 1955.
He received the Bangladesh Bank Award (2009) for his contributions to theoretical and applied development economics.
He has authored 29 books.