HĀDI ḤASAN, (b. Hyderabad, 3 September 1894; d. Aligarh, 23 May 1963), Indian scholar of Persian literature. His father was a distinguished member of the Hyderabad State Administrative Service. His mother was Persian by birth, and hence he spoke Persian fluently from childhood. After receiving his early education in Hyderabad, he graduated in science from Ferguson College, Poona and won a state scholarship from Hyderabad to study abroad. He enrolled at the University of Cambridge and passed the science tripos in geology, botany and chemistry. On his return to India he played an active role in the freedom movement against British rule and was praised for his work for independence by Mahatma Gandhi (Israeli, p. 102).
Hādi Ḥasan began his academic career as a reader in botany at Aligarh Muslim University. However, his love of Persian literature soon made him change his academic field. He went back to study in England and completed a Ph.D. in Persian at the University of London. On his return to India he was appointed professor and head of the Department of Persian at Aligarh Muslim University, a position he held until 1958. The department flourished under his leadership and became a center of excellence in the country.
Fluent in English and Persian, Professor Hādi Ḥasan was a gifted orator who often spoke extempore. Besides his own academic interests, he was a champion of the educational advancement of Muslims in India. He toured extensively to collect funds for the establishment of the Medical College in Aligarh. When it was finally established in 1965, the residential hall for the students of the Medical College was named after him in memory of his contribution. He also received prestigious decorations for his academic services from the governments of India and Iran.
An extremely productive scholar, he published many articles and books, including the following: Studies in Persian Literature (Delhi, 1923); History of Persian Navigation (London, 1928); Falaki: His Life, Time and Works (London, 1929); Diwān-i-Falaki Sherwāni (London, 1930); Raziuddin Nishāpuri, His Life and Works (Bombay, 1940); The Unique Madras Ms. of Diwān-i-Falaki (Hyderabad, 1951); Mughal Poetry: Its Historical and Cultural Value (Madras, 1952); The Unique Diwān of Emperor Humāyun (Hyderabad, 1953); Qāsim-i Kāhi, His life, Times, and Works (Hyderabad, 1954); Diwān-i-Kāhi (Calcutta, 1956); Majmuʿa-ye maqālāt (intro. by ʿA.-ʿA. Ḥekmat, Hyderabad, 1958).
Much of the information above is derived from the following two obituaries: Sh. Israeli, “Obituary: The late Professor Dr. Hadi Hasan,” Indo-Iranica 16/2, 1963, pp. 102-3.
“Wafāt-e Hādi Ḥasan,” Rāhnemā-ye ketāb 6/3, 1342 Š./1963, pp. 248, 250.
(K. A. Jaisi)
Originally Published: December 15, 2002
Last Updated: February 24, 2012
This article is available in print.
Vol. XI, Fasc. 4, pp. 436-437