Abdul-Majid Bhurgri

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Abdul-Majid Bhurgri
عبدالماجد ڀرڳڙي
عبدالماجد بھرگڑی
अबदुल माजिद भुरग॒ड़ी
Abdul-Majid Bhurgri
Born Abdul-Majid Bhurgri
Village Ghulam Nabi Bhurgri, Taluka Shahdadkot, District Qamber Shahdadkot, Sindh, Pakistan
Residence Seattle, Washington, United States
Nationality Pakistani
Other names Majid,ماجد, ماجد
Ethnicity Sindhi Baloch
Education MBA, B.A. (Hons.) in General History
Alma mater

University of Arizona

University of Sindh
Occupation Computer Software Professional
Years active 1972–present
Religion Islam
Website
www.bhurgri.com

Abdul-Majid Bhurgri or Bhurgari (Sindhi: عبدالماجد ڀرڳڙي, Urdu: عبدالماجد بھرگڑی‎, Hindi: अबदुल माजिद भुरग॒ड़ी), the founder of Sindhi Computing, originally hails from Larkana Sindh and now lives in Seattle, United States. He was the first person to develop Sindhi Computing solution in 1987-88. This initiative made use of Sindhi possible on personal computers and revolutionized Sindhi printing and publishing industry.[1]

In 2000-2001, Bhurgri developed the first ever Sindhi Unicode font, obtained support for Sindhi on Windows platform and developed needed resources to make use of standard Sindhi possible on Windows OS and made these freely available on internet. It resulted in use of standard Unicode based Sindhi possible on computers and internet.[2]

In 2002, he wrote his famous white paper for Microsoft titled “Enabling Pakistani Languages Through Unicode”. Referring to Bhurgri’s paper, Microsoft’s Michael S. Kaplan commented in his blog: “This is pretty exciting, since at one point Sindhi was being considered for Vista (but was ultimately not done). I suspect that Abdul-Majid Bhurgri (who I was in contact with back in 2007 talking about Urdu and Sindhi) will be pleased to see Sindhi finally being added to Windows 8”.

Early life[edit]

Abdul-Majid Bhurgri was born on February 8, 1948 in village Ghulam Nabi Bhurgri, Taluka Shahdadkot, Larkana now District Qamber Shahdadkot, Sindh. His father, Abdul Ghafoor Bhurgri, is a lawyer, politician and writer. His mother Khursheed Bano was a housewife.

From the age of three till he was seven, he lived with his paternal uncle Ghulam Siddique Baloch who did not have any children of his own. Ghulam Siddique, a teacher by profession, was an officer in the education department who got posted at different places during his tenure. Thus, while with his uncle's family, Majid Bhurgri lived at several places including Tando Jan Mohammad, Hyderabad, Mirpur Mathelo, Sukkur, Naushahro Feroze and Shahdadpur.

When he was seven, a son was born to his uncle after which he moved back with his own parents who lived in Larkana.

Education[edit]

Majid Bhurgri completed his primary education in Larkana, first at PV School and later at Shah Muhammad School.

He completed his secondary and higher secondary school education initially at Municipal High School and later at Government High School, Larkana.

On successfully passing the intermediate examination at Government College, Larkana, Majid Bhurgri went to University of Sindh to study B.A. (Hons.) in General History. After completing B.A. (Hons.) in 1968 he decided to prepare for the Central Superior Services of Pakistan examinations and also get the admission to Bachelors of Law (LL.B.) programme in Law College, Larkana.

In 1983, as an officer of the then Income Tax Department (now Internal Revenue Service), he proceeded on study leave and enrolled in MBA programme at University of Arizona at Tucson, Arizona. He completed the programme in 1985 with emphasis in Finance. During his studies at University of Arizona he was first introduced to the computer technology.

Professional life[edit]

In October 1971 he appeared in the CSS (Central Superior Services of Pakistan) exam. He qualified the exam and was selected to Pakistan Taxation Service which he joined on November 13, 1972. He received year long professional training at the Finance Services Academy, Walton at Lahore. After that he received further departmental training for another six months at Directorate of Training (Income Tax) at Lahore.

In July 1974 he was posted to Larkana as Income Tax Officer. He stayed there for three years.

In 1977, he was transferred to Hyderabad and then to Karachi in 1980.

As mentioned earlier, he remained on leave from 1980 till 1983 and while on leave he was promoted in grade 19 as Additional Commissioner of Income Tax. On his return from leave, he was posted in Karachi. In 1990 he was posted as General Manager (Commercial Purchases) in Pakistan International Airlines. After about six months, he proceeded on leave without pay and went to America. While there, he was offered a job as Consultant/Advisor by a Silicon valley firm Advance Micro Research which he accepted.

Sindhi computing[edit]

In 1987 he decided to set up desktop publishing business on modest scale in collaboration with a friend. For this purpose he decided to buy a Macintosh personal computer and a laser printer. While he was waiting for the equipment to be delivered, his collaborator who was supposed to set up the facility, expressed his inability to do so owing to some personal exigencies. When the equipment was finally delivered around October 1987, he was somewhat stuck with it. It was then that he decided to work on and develop a solution for use of Sindhi on personal computers specifically for the purposes of word processing and desktop publishing.

In November 1987, after experimenting for a few weeks, Majid Bhurgri was able to make an initial breakthrough and successfully printed a page in Sindhi on the laser printer. This news was also carried by Sindhi daily Hilal-e-Pakistan. Soon the newspaper also published a column written by Inam Shaikh and typeset on Majid Bhurgri’s Macintosh computer. He also typest the Sindhi section of a college magazine in Karachi, Nuqoosh. This was the beginning of Sindhi Computing which revolutionized the Sindhi printing and publishing industry as it moved from outdated manual typesetting (composition) into the new era of personal computer based typesetting during the next few years.

By March 1988, Bhurgri came up with more stable version of Sindhi desktop computing.

In July 1988, Distributors of Pakistan for Apple Computers officially announced Sindhi desktop solution at a ceremony in Karachi, and appreciated Bhurgri’s contribution.

Daily "Hilal Pakistan" was the first Sindhi newspaper to use this solution for typesetting through computers. Daily Awami Awaz was the first Sindhi newspaper which began its publication with four computers and a laser printer. Later, Ibrat, Kawish, Aftab and other newspapers and magazines also followed the suit.

In 2000-2001, Majid Bhurgri gave another gift to people of Sindh as another quantum leap was taken with regards to use of Sindhi language on computers. He coordinated with Microsoft and came up with a unicode solution for Sindhi language. This was the start of another era in Sindhi computing. Use of Sindhi, based on Unicode standard, made its use on internet and World Wide Web possible and thereby ushered an era of communication between Sindhis worldwide. He also uploaded his famous Sindhi installer on his website for free distribution.

Personal life[edit]

In 1969, while his family was spending summer vacations in Quetta, Majid met and fell in love with a Kashmiri girl Nargis. In 1970 they got married. After almost 38 years of happily married life, his beloved wife Nargis died on 25 April 2008. Majid Bhurgri has three sons Abdul Musavir, Abdul Basit and Abdul Bari, and a daughter, Ayesha. All of them are married and live in Seattle area.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "HYDERABAD: Call to promote Sindhi language through IT". Dawn. March 13, 2009. Retrieved November 11, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Sections: Sindhi Informatics". Official website of Sindhi Language Authority. October 28, 2011. Retrieved November 11, 2014. 

External links[edit]