Behzad Parvez | Caravan Daily
NEW DELHI – A veteran journalist and author, Dr Ausaf Saied Vasfi passed away on Friday in New Delhi after a protracted illness. He was 80.
Till his illustrious career spanning over five decades came to an end with his demise, Syed Ausaf Saied Vasfi remained committed to objectivity in journalism.
In his death global Muslim media in particular and print media, in general, has lost one of its stalwarts. Through his writings and analysis, Dr Vasfi dealt with Muslim issues in their right perspective and thereby brought little known facts related to the community out of the closet.
For over half a century, Dr Ausaf Saied Vasfi worked for Radiance Viewsweekly, the spokesman of Indian Muslims, in various capacities. He was retired as Deputy Editor of Radiance. Even after his retirement in 1996, he continued writing for the periodical regularly, informed Sikandar Azam, editor of Radiance Viewsweekly.
He also worked for London-based magazines, Impact International and Arabia.
Through his writings, he covered Muslim issues extensively putting in perspective all the ups and downs of the community. Throughout his career he stood by the underdog.
Ausaf sahib was among those journalists who had to undergo imprisonment during the black days of emergency in India for writing against the excesses perpetrated by the Indira Gandhi regime.
Dr Ausaf Vasfi will be remembered for long for his enormous contribution to the global Muslim media. During his career he interviewed a number of heads of Muslim countries and other dignitaries. So much so that he had become a link between the media and the Muslim world.
Dr Ausaf Vasfi authored a number of books. Prominent among them is his treatise, India’s foreign relations and the Muslim world.
One of the oldest members of Press Club of India (PCI) and the Press Information Bureau (PIB), Vasfi was known for his soft spoken and amenable personality. The PCI conveyed its condolences to the bereaved family.
Dr Vasfi was laid to rest at Shaheen Bagh graveyard in the presence of his relatives and hundreds of admirers including senior journalists. His son, Tauqeer, led the janaza (funeral) prayers at the central mosque of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind headquarters in New Delhi.
Ausaf Vasfi has left behind a number of journalists in his family. The eldest son Tausief is on the editorial board of a Saudi daily and daughter Uzma is a columnist. His son-in-law Ziya us Salam is an editor in Frontline magazine of the Hindu group.
Mr Ejaz Ahmad Aslam, Editor in Chief of Radiance paying his tributes to the departed soul said Ausaf saheb wrote several books and was a humble man.
Expressing his condolences, Mr A.U. Asif, a senior journalist, and editor of Chauthi Dunya said: “Ausaf saheb is no more but his thousands of columns on different issues would keep him alive for ever.” A long time friend of Mr Ausaf, A.U.Asif further said, “The global Muslim media has become poorer in his sudden demise.”