Rahim, Sheikh Abdur
Rahim, Sheikh Abdur (1859-1931) son of Munshi Sheikh Golam Yahia, a primary schoolteacher,' was born in 1859 in the village of Muhammadpur in the Basirhat subdivision of 24-Paraganas, West Bengal. He established himself as a journalist and writer. Abdur Rahim lost his mother in childhood and was brought up under the care of Radhamadhav Basu, the Zamindar of Taki and a Deputy Magistrate. He initially went to a local school in Taki. He then went to Kolkata to complete his secondary education. However, he caught smallpox in 1875 and had to discontinue his studies. Radhamadhav continued to support him.
Sheikh Abdur Rahim's writings were inspired by Islamic idealism. He hoped by his writings to awaken the backward Muslim society. Among his many books on Islam and Islamic ideals are Hazrat Mohammader Jibancharita O Dharmaniti (1888), Islamtattva (1896), Namajtattva (1898), Hajjbidhi (1903), Islam Itibrtta (2 parts, 1910), Namaj Shiksa (1917), Khotba (1932), etc. He also wrote two romantic books: Alhamra (1891) and Pranay Yatri (1892).
Sheikh Abdur Rahim also edited and published several magazines: sudhakar (1889), islam pracharak (1891), Mihir (1892), Mihir O Sudhakar (1894), Hafez (1897), moslem bharat (1900), Moslem Hitaisi (1911) and Islam-Darshan (1916). He was associated with various organisations such as Calcutta Mohammedan Union (1903), bangiya mussAlman sahitya samiti, vangiya sahitya parishad, Calcutta Central Textbook Committee, 24-Paraganas District Education Committee, etc.
Sheikh Abdur Rahim was an examiner in Bangla for the Entrance examination held under the university of calcutta. He was also interested in developing Bangla. His essay 'Babgabhasa O Mussulman Samaj' reflects his concern that Bengal Muslim society impart education in Bangla as well as produce literature in Bangla. Sheikh Abdur Rahim died on 14 July 1931 in his own village. [Khondkar Sirajul Haque]