1955: Denied pourashava election win and falsely jailed

Last updated: 10 October 2017 From the section Mohammad Rafi (M. R.) Khan

Following his medical graduation, Dr. Khan practiced for two years at his medical practice in Satkhira. He was the only MBBS doctor in town. He enjoyed the love and admiration of his townfolks and developed a wide range of network.

In 1955 the local public encouraged him to contest for the post of Chairman in the Pouroshava (Municipality) election. However, despite winning the election, the ballot box was burnt immediately after counting of votes and his opponent candidate was declared winner. Subsequent political events led to false implication and the arrest of Dr. Khan. He was transferred to Khulna and jailed for one month. Upon his release, Dr. Khan decided to leave Satkhira for good and move to Khulna.

Deeply aggrieved, Dr. Khan filed a case with the election tribunal at Khulna challenging the election verdict. The tribunal headed by the District Magistrate, Khulna, asked S.D.O., Satkhira, to produce the ballot box along with ballots.

The S.D.O. approached Dr. Khan’s father, a very respectable and influential person at Satkhira at that time, to persuade his son to withdraw the case. His father, maybe, for fear of counter-offensive from the administration, asked his son to withdraw the case, which Prof. Khan complied with. But this noble gesture did not keep him out of the woods. With 92-ka rule imposed after the fall of Abu Hossain Sarkar cabinet, he was arrested on false charges of being the president of a certain political party in Satkhira. Immediately after his arrest, he was transferred to Khulna district jail.

He remained behind bars for one month without bail. He was released on bail with the help of a potential political leader in Khulna at that time. Completely broken and mentally devastated, Prof. Khan decided to quit Satkhira for good. Although he was in dire financial straits after all these tumultuous incidents, but still with determination to make a fresh start, he went to Khulna with his wife and daughter, rented a house and started medical practice there. It is from Khulna that he availed a scholarship in1957 for DTM & H course in England and subsequently earned DCH and MRCP degree from London and Edinburgh. He returned to Dhaka in 1963.


Professor of Paediatrics and Associate Professor of Medicine in various prestigious institutions

After returning for his postgraduate study in England and Scotland, Dr. Khan joined public service and was appointed as Associate Professor of Medicine in Dhaka Medical College in 1963. He stayed in the role for one year and then moved to Rajshahi where he was the Associate Professor of Paediatrics in Rajshahi Medical College from 1964 to 1969. Dr. Khan then returned back to Dhaka Medical College and continued the same role there. He was elevated to Professor of Paediatrics in 1970 and remained in that role for the next three years.

In 1972, in newly formed Bangladesh, Dr. Khan was responsible for introducing FCPS, DCH & MCPS in Paediatrics. The following year, he occupied the dual role of Professor and Joint Director of the Institute of Postgraduate Medicine and Research (IPGM&R). He remained in that role until 1978.

The following year Dr. Khan became Professor of Paediatrics and Director of Dhaka Shishu (Children) Hospital. A year later, he was appointed Professor of Paediatrics in IPGM&R and stayed in that role for nearly a decade until his retirement in 1988.

He put a special contribution for establishing Paediatric unit in Rajshahi Medical College in 1964 - 1965 and strengthening Dhaka Shishu Hospital in 1978 - 1979.