Remembering Doctor Saheb

By | August 17, 2015

By Ahmad Fakir Muhammad

(Written on the occasion of the first death anniversary of Dr. Abdul Moid Hamid, T.I., ex-President of the National Council for Homeopathy and ex-Honorary Personal Homeopathic Physician to the President of Pakistan)

THE ancestral graveyard of Hamids’ in Model Colony was overcrowded. Those who could not make it in were standing outside the four-walls of the cemetery, braving the scorching heat of a May day of 1997. Such an unprecedented and assorted assemblage in a funeral seemed to be a rarity – rather a novelty – to the residents of Model Colony, as was evident from their whispers and the wide gaze in their eyes. From high military, police and government officers to a generality of homeopaths, traders and businessmen and down to menial workers, the funeral was attended by people from all walks of life. The pall of gloom engulfing the serene atmosphere of the graveyard began to thicken as the last funeral rites of DR. A.M. HAMID drew to a close.

Earlier, as the funeral procession started, moving scenes were seen at his residence. Grief-stricken faces, some weeping and sobbing and some trying to suppress their tears in order to appear normal, a state of grief and shock prevailed all over. In fact, not a thousand eulogies, however beautifully written, would have been a better tribute to the services and personality of late Doctor Saheb than the touching scenes, witnessed at the residence and in the graveyard, briefly described above.

Doctor Saheb possessed all the ingredients that go into the making of an extraordinary personality; proper education and grooming, a well-set goal in life and the dedication to achieve it. Homeopathy was perhaps his first and last love. He dedicated his whole life for its cause. To many a short-sighted, the passage of UAHP (Unani, Ayurvedic and Homeopathic Practitioners’) Act, 1965 was an end of a successful struggle, but to him, it was just a beginning of a tortuous and tantalizing journey which was to pass through several vicissitudes. As a sequel to the passage of the Act, a board – The Board of Homeopathic System of medicine – was set up. Doctor Saheb served it in several capacities, the last one being as its honorary treasurer.

In 1979, the Board was renamed as National Council for Homeopathy and Doctor Saheb was elected its first president. His achievements as the elected president of the Council during his two stints – first from 1979 to 1986 and second from 1987 to 1993 – are too well-known too be recalled here. However, a passing reference to a few of them seems to be in order; setting-up of a Research Centre at Karachi, preparation of a draft of amendments to the UAHP Act, 1965, establishment of a regional office of the National Council for Homeopathy at Lahore, publication of the Council’s journal, computerization of the examination section of the Council, holding of a seminar presided over by the President of Pakistan in 1983, etc.

Apart from the foregoing, a comprehensive homeopathic drugs act was drafted and sent to the Ministry of Health during his second term as the president of the National Council for Homeopathy. Unfortunately, it has been assigned to the cold storage and given our official tendency to dither and procrastinate, one does not know, when will it finally go through the Parliament to become a law. Given our national trait to seek cheap publicity by taking credit for the achievements of others, it will be a little wonder, if someone attempts to present the enactment of the proposed drugs act (that is, if at all it goes through the Parliament) as his unique deed! Let all homeopaths be on guard against such a shameful plagiarism.

Author of several books and papers on homeopathy, Doctor Saheb had the honour of representing Pakistan in several international conferences on homeopathy. He was recipient of two WHO fellowships, first in 1982 to study the primary health-care system of China and the second in 1991 to study the modern method of remedy preparation in Germany. He was the leader of the Pakistani delegation to the SAARC Workshop on Homeopathic System of Medicine, held in New Delhi, India, in 1990. His outstanding services for Homeopathy have been duly recognized through conferment of Tamgha-e-Imtiaz (Medal of Excellence) which is awarded by the Government of Pakistan to its citizens for their meritorious services in the fields of literature, arts, sports, medicine, music or science. His appointment in 1983 as the Honorary Personal Homeopathic Physician to the President of Pakistan was a well-deserved tribute to his acumen as a homeopathic physician.

All his services and the honours he received apart, his real greatness lay in his down-to-earth manners. Love, compassion, kindness, generosity and humility formed an integral part of his personality. Anyone who came even in minor touch with him was captivated by the exuberant warmth characterizing his personality. He would fondly be remembered by all those whose lives he touched.

Monthly Homeopath, Karachi, May –June 1998