Dr. Ghulam Mohi ud Din  first qualified medical doctor of Kashmir

Dr G M Din jpg
Dr. G M Din: Photo courtesy by Dr. Farooq A Wandroo

Mufti Saud ud Din of famous Mufti Family of Wazpora had two sons, namely, Mufti Ghulam Mohi ud Din & Mufti Rafi ud Din. Mufti Saud ud Din was a courtier of the Nizam Hyderabad. Mufti Ghulam Mohi ud Din was born at Wazpora Srinagar, Kashmir on 15 the October 1904 and was educated in Kashmir upto Intermediate. He  was first “Kashmiri Muslim” among 52 graduates who got MBBS degree in 1930 from famous King Edward Medical College of Lahore . Two other prominent doctors of Kashmir, Dr Ali Mohammad Jan graduated from that college in 1937 &  Dr Naseer Ahmad Shah had also graduated later at the King Edward Medical College, Lahore. Dr Mufti Ghulam ud Din , who is remembered & known as Dr. G M Din, went for pursuing his MBBS under the Maharaja’s schlarship scheme of 1927. After doing his MBBS he soon became a popular, well known, and successful medical practitioner of Kashmir. He was appointed in State Health Department as Assistant Surgeon & around 1936, he left for England to obtain further experience and higher qualifications. He landed on British shores & decided to make the island country as his home. He completed his postgraduate studies and obtained the MRCP in 1942. He was the first Kashmiri to be appointed as a consultant in the UK and served as a physician at Kingston General Hospital, Hull from 1946-1968. He wanted to return home but WWII prevented his returning to Kashmir, and when the National Health Service was set up by Britain during the war he was actively involved in medical services in Hull and was one of the first Asians to be appointed a consultant physician. He married his Registrar , a local Irish doctor, Jean Mtchel, in 1955 of Hull who fondly & lovingly called him throughout their married life “Mohi”.  In 1965 he was elected FRCP. He retired from services in 1968. During his years as a consultant Dr G M Din was well known for the guidance and help that he provided to many visiting doctors from the Indian subcontinent. He was well respected by his colleagues at work and always had a kind heart for people from Kashmir some of whom enjoyed hospitality in his home on their arrival in this country until they got a job.

Dr Din was a keengardener and spent a lot of his spare time creating and maintaining a very beautiful garden around his home.

Keenly interested in charity work, he was a regular supporter of Oxfam, Mother Theresa’s fund, & the Salvation Army. In his support for good causes he did not forget his homeland, where he created in 1971 the Fallah-I-Am Trust, which in English means the trust for the benefit of the public. The main function of the trust was  educational, but it also provided dowries for poor girls when dowry a , bad custom, was the main obstacle to the marriages of poor girls. Unfortunately, the trustees of the Fallah-i-Aam Trust failed to carry out the obligations of the Trust which failed thus to grow to accomplish the objectives for which it was created by Dr. G M Din. Dr Din visited Kashmir as often as his health and time permitted to oversee the function of the Tust.

He is survived by his wife Jean and their daughter Sarah who lives in Yorkshire. He died at Hull North of England at 80 years age in 1984. He was buried in a Muslim cemetery which he had bought from his own savings. A good number of Muslims including another noble genteleman with Kashmiri roots, Dr. Ghulam Jeelani Drabu who arrived in Britain during the 1950s & his wife & some visiting Kashmiri Muslims were present at the time of Dr. Din’s burial. Dr. Ghulam Jeelani Drabu [1926-2019] wrote in obituary of Dr. G M Din published in British Medical Journal , 1984, that “ in his support for good causes he did not forget his homeland”.  Dr G M Din donated his personal library to Medical College Srinagar and put a major chunk of his life’s savings into the Kashmir based ‘Falah-i-Aam Charity Trust’. Unthankfully, the archives /library of GMC Srinagar did not have a photograph of the donor , this son of the soil till April, 2023 when I enquired from them about it.  Dr Drabu and his Kashmiri colleagues established the charity, Kashmir Medical Relief Trust (KMRT) that helped purchases of ambulances and surgical instruments in the valley and contributed to the develop ment of Kashmir Leprosy Hospital. In valley Dr. G M Din’s death was mourned by all. On Radio Kashmir & Doordarshan Srinagar his death was greatly mourned by all including Dr Ali Jan, Dr. Naseer Ahmad Mir , CM & other State authorities, social & religious heads. Dr Din’s wife Jean described her husband as “a great gentleman, and an outstanding physician . . . highly regarded both in Hull and Srinagar”.

Source: Gulzar Mufti, Kashmir in sickness & health, at 176-178; obituary, by Dr. Ghulam Jeelani Drabu, published in British Medical Journal , vol 289, 15 September, 1964, at p 707;  information supplied by Dr. Farooq A Wandroo, MD, FRCP, FRCPath, RCPath,Consultant Haematologist, Chemotherapy & MDT Research Lead  Department of Haematology, Birmingham, England. Dr. Wandroo is working on his book on Medical Education in Kashmir:

M.J. Aslam is a historian


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