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  • Mohamed Aslam

Padmashree Ali Manikfan

Ali Manikfan is one of the recipients of this year's Padmashree award. Who is Manikfan?

Why is the country honoring him with such great recognition?

Yes, Ali Manikfan, a common man, is a scientist who has amazed the world. Manikfan is widely regarded for his research papers even by international universities.



Manikfan is a researcher who accurately observes and studies the sea, land, sky, and space and prepares reports. What Manikfan gained from his early childhood education was a vast world of inventions. Ali Manikfan is known as an oceanographer and agronomist, but he has dealt with more issues than this. He is also known as a multilingual scholar and shipbuilder.



Manikfan was born on March 16, 1938, on the island of Minicoy, the son of Musa Manikfan and Fatima Manikka. Educational facilities on the island were poor at the time. So Ali Manikfan came to Kannur and got his primary education. However, Manikfan returned to Minicoy from Kannur as he was opposed to the existing system of education. His view was that education should be self-sufficient.


However, Manikfan, who received only a basic education, now speaks more than fourteen languages, including Malayalam, Sanskrit, Hindi, Tamil, Mahal in Lakshadweep, Arabic, Urdu, English, Latin, French, Russian, German, and Persian.

Marine researcher, astronomer, geographer, sociologist, technologist, environmentalist, farmer, naturalist, and Islamic scholar are all adjectives named after Manikfan.


He devotes most of his time to the knowledge of marine biology, astronomy, geography, sociology, and shipbuilding, the island's unique resource. In 1956 he served as a teacher and later in the office of the Chief Civil Officer of the Central Government. But his most interesting subject is marine research. He then joined the Department of Fisheries in 1960 as a researcher.




A species of fish is also known by the name Manikfan. This species was discovered by Ali Manikfan, Abu Duff Manikfani (Abu Duff Manikfani). It is one of the many species of daffodils. Renowned Marine Biologist and Director of the Central Marine Research Institute, Dr. S. Jones also makes special mention of this achievement of Manikfan when classifying rare fish. Researchers are amazed that Manikfan can identify up to 400 species of fish.




As a child, Manikfan was a reader who wanted to learn something on his own. This is why he always criticized the traditional method of education. Although he came to Kerala to study at a young age, he was not ready to study subjects he did not like. He always says to leave children free to study. His advice is never to waste time learning subjects you don't like and to go ahead and study what you want.




He has also developed a Hijra calendar that can be used by the Muslim community anywhere in the world. According to the calendar, Muslim festivals should be held on the same day in all countries. However, criticism of the calendar was high.



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