Sir Ziauddin Ahmed was born in 1877 in the picturesque town of Meerut in India. He was an outstanding and versatile educationist, a genius in mathematics, an expert in French, German, Italian and Arabic languages, and a political figure. He was also the longest service Vice-Chancellor in the history of Aligarh Muslim University. His close association with Sir Syed Ahmed Khan added to his immortal stature and dignity.
His died on 23rd December 1947 in London, and was buried in the premises of the main mosque of Aligarh Muslim University alongside Sir Syed Ahmed Khan. His untimely demise left a big void in the University and in the lives of all his well-wishers. Every year on the 23rd of December, Dr. Sir Ziauddin Ahmed Memorial Society arranges a memorial in the Abul Hassan Jafarey Auditorium of Ziauddin University, Clifton to keep his memory alive in order to inspire the younger generations to follow in his footsteps.
Sir Ziauddin Ahmed did his Bachelor of Arts in 1885 with a distinction from Mohammadan Anglo Oriental College (MAO) Aligarh. Later he did his Master of Arts in Mathematics from Calcutta and Allahabad Universities in the year 1897 and 1898 respectively.
He joined the Trinity College, Cambridge in 1901 for an Honours degree in Mathematics, and graduated with excellence by securing first position. In 1904 Sir Ziauddin was awarded the Sir Isaac Newton Scholarship, a rare honour for a foreign graduate. He was the first Indian to achieve this award.
His thirst for knowledge took him to Gottingen University, Germany. In 1905 he completed his Ph.D in Mathematics. In addition to this, Sir Ziauddin also visited Paris University in France and Bologna University in Italy in the year 1905 for advanced studies in his chosen fields of Mathematics.
On his return from Europe, Sir Ziauddin Ahmed devoted the rest of his life to Aligarh Muslim University which in a way finally become the limb of Pakistan Movement and as the Quaid-e-Azam once said, “An Arsenal of Pakistan”.
When M.A.O. College was given the status of a University in 1920, he became its first Pro Vice Chancellor. In 1935 he was elected as the Vice Chancellor and remained so until 1946, thus becoming the longest serving the Vice Chancellor in the history of Aligarh Muslim University to date. In 1946 he was appointed as a Rector of the University and held the position until his demise in 1947.
Sir Ziauddin Ahmed was dedicated to Aligarh University and took keen interest in University affairs and raised funds for the University time and again. Sir Ziauddin Ahmed supported Pakistan Movement and encouraged the students of Aligarh Muslim University to play an active role in this historic movement. He was also chosen by the Quaid-e-Azam to be the General Secretary of the Muslim League Parliamentary Party in the Central Assembly of India in 1938.
Sir Ziauddin Ahmed’s dream to establish a medical college of Aligarh Muslim University was not realized in his lifetime, but has came true with the establishment of Ziauddin Medical University now known as Ziauddin University in Karachi, Pakistan and Ziauddin Medical College is a constituent unit of Ziauddin University.
His grandson Dr. Asim Hussain, Chancellor Ziauddin University and Chairman Dr. Ziauddin Hospital is very devotedly serving the cause of suffering humanity and medical education in Pakistan. Dr. Sir Ziauddin Ahmed could rightly be tittled as “Nabbas-e-Millat” as he was the pulse reader of the Muslim nation.
While Sir Syed was the founder of Aligarh, Sir Ziauddin gave its strength and can rightly be termed as the builder of Aligarh.
In 1968, the family of Dr. Ziauddin established Dr. Ziauddin Hospital Trust, where in the same year this trust established a second hospital in North Nazimabad as “Dr. Ziauddin Hospital”, which is now a 300 bed tertiary hospital, catering to a large population. This hospital provides an opportunity for students to gain knowledge and skills in assessing and evaluating a wide range of problems in a tertiary care setting. The hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment necessary to diagnose and manage problems effectively and efficiently.