He studied for only a few months at the village maktab but gathered knowledge on varied subjects through his own efforts and insights. In his spare time he began surveying land and soon developed exceptional expertise in the mathematical and geometric calculations required for it. Aroj Ali Matubbar Essentially, Aroj Ali was a rationalist and humanist who fought against ignorance, superstition, and religious fundamentalism. He spoke of his conviction and experience in more than one of his books.

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For example, he questioned Islamic law of inheritance as he failed to reconcile the suggested mode of sharing of inherited property. He wrote several books braving his lack of formal schooling. His books were always in danger of being banned by government that since they contained certain religious claims. Matubbar was arrested and taken into police custody for his book, Sotyer Shondhaney The Quest for Truth.

The landless boy faced even more critical crisis when a local usurer called him out of his ancestral homestead. Destitute Araz Ali grew up somehow on the charity of others and by working as a farm labourer. He could not attend in any school due to his poverty. A kindhearted man helped him finish the Bangla Primers. Persevering as he was, he kept on reading more and more.

To satisfy his thirst for knowledge he studied all the Bangla books in Barisal Public Library like a serious student. Philosophy as a subject interested him most, but there were not enough books in the collection there. A teacher of philosophy at the B M College, Kazi Ghulam Quadir, was impressed by his depth of knowledge and understanding, so he helped him borrow books from the college library.

This is how his mind was shaped. Living Due to financial constraints, Matubbar could not pursue any academic course or achieve and formal institutional degree. He lived mostly on subsistence farming. He learned surveying techniques and began his life as a private land surveyor in his locality.

This enabled him to accumulate some capital and he could own some land to start farming. He donated his eyes for transplantation after his death. After his death in , Aroj Ali Matubbar came to be regarded as prolific thinker that rural Bangladesh ever produced, and an iconoclast who was not afraid of speaking out against entrenched belief and superstitions. He himself drew the cover of his first book which was written in and published twenty one years later in under the title Satyer Sandhane.

I then started jotting down questions, not for writing a book, but only to remember these questions later.

Those questions were driving my mind towards an endless ocean and I was gradually drifting away from the fold of religion. These are a Who am I self? Books He was a different type of writer. Because of his rural background it was not possible on his part to remove darkness covering the society, but with the dim torch he held, he tried to see the truth, wherever he could, without fear or doubt.

Some of his writings have been translated into English and compiled in a volume published by Pathak Samabesh. Recognition and awards Matubbar was little known to the elite educated society of the country during his life-time. His first book published in was rich with secular thought but caught little attention. It is only in the final years of life that he came to be known to the enlightened society of the country.

His writings were collected and published. People in general started to take interest in his books, which although refelcted an untrained mind, posed a number of intriguing questions. Soon he rose to eminence albeit after his death in



He was born to a poor farming family. He studied for only a few months at the village maqtab , however this brief dabble in institutional education centered only on the Quran and other Islam studies. Matubbar lost his father at an early age. The landless boy faced an even more critical crisis when a local usurer called him out of his ancestral homestead. Destitute, Matubbar grew up somehow on the charity of others and by working as a farm laborer.


Aroj Ali Matubbar


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