Abul Kashem Khan
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|Abul Kashem Khan|
|Born||April 5, 1905|
|Died||March 31, 1991(aged 85)|
Abul Kashem Khan (April 5, 1905 – March 31, 1991), best known as A. K. Khan, was a Bengali lawyer, industrialist and politician. In 1945, he founded A K Khan & Company, one of Bangladesh's leading conglomerates. Khan served as a member of the Constituent Assembly of India and the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan. He was a federal minister of Pakistan and member in the Pakistan National Assembly.
Khan was born in the Village of Mohara in Panchlaish in Chittagong in 1905. His father was a government sub-registrar at Fatehabad, Chittagong. He studied law at Presidency College, Calcutta. In 1934 he joined the Kolkata High court as an advocate. He joined the judicial branch of the Bengali Civil service in 1935. He continued in the service till 1944.
Khan entered business during the Second World War in 1945, when Chittagong was a key base for Allied Forces. He step up a number of industries including a match factory, a plywood factory, a textile mill, and dockyard. He was elected a member of the Constituent Assembly of India from the All-India Muslim League candidate in 1946. He joined the Pakistan Constituent Assembly after the partition of India. In 1951-1952 budget he spoke against the economical discrimination of East Pakistan.
"Sir, I cannot help' remark ' which I hope will not be misinterpreted as an indication of petty provincial-mindedness. Sir, these are the days of decentralisation and regional self-sufficiency. We find that in this six-year plan, the total sum allocated to East Bengal where 56 percent of your people live is less than 23 percent. Under the head 'Agriculture', provision has been made for 82 crores and a sum total of all the projects envisaged for East Bengal is only 5.6 crores. Under the head 'Development of Hydro-Electric Power', a provision for 45 crores has been made and the share of East Bengal is only 5 crores. Under the head 'Industries', provision has been made for textile industries' [for West Pakistan] to the tune of 30 crores and the provision for jute industry' [for East Bengal] is only 11 crores. Now, Sir, this gives a clear indication that not only in the past, not only in the present, but in the future development plans of the country, East Bengal is not expected to get its legitimate share."
He was the minister of Industries, Works, Irrigation, Power and Mineral Resources from 1958 to 1962. From 1962 to 1964 he was a member of the national assembly of Pakistan. He retired from politics in 1965.
He died on 31 March 1991.