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E. Ahamed
The portrait of the Minister of State for Railways, Shri E. Ahammed.jpg
Ahamed in 2014
Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha
In office
Preceded by Office established
Succeeded by P. K. Kunhalikutty
Constituency Malappuram
In office
Preceded by G. M. Banatwala
Succeeded by E. T. Mohammed Basheer
Constituency Ponnani
In office
Preceded by Ebrahim Sulaiman Sait
Succeeded by T. K. Hamza
Constituency Manjeri
Minister of State for External Affairs
In office
23 May 2004 – 26 May 2014
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
Preceded by Vinod Khanna
Succeeded by V. K. Singh
Personal details
Born (1938-04-29)29 April 1938
Cannanore, Madras Presidency, British India
(now Kerala)
Died 1 February 2017(2017-02-01) (aged 78)
New Delhi
Political party Indian Union Muslim League
Spouse Zuhara Ahamed
Children 2 sons and 1 daughter
Alma mater Brennen College, Tellicherry

E. Ahamed (29 April 1938 – 1 February 2017), Edappakath Ahamed in full, was an Indian politician from Kannur (then Cannanore) in northern Kerala. A Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) between 1991 and 2017, he was a key figure in India's diplomatic relations with the Middle East.

Educated at Brennen College, Tellicherry and Trivandrum Law College, Ahamed was first elected to Kerala Legislative Assembly in 1967 (from Kannur, with Indian Union Muslim League). He later served as a cabinet minister (Industry) in the U D F ministry headed by Congress-leader K. Karunakaran (1982–87). He was first elected to the Parliament (Lok Sabha) in 1991. Ahamed was appointed Union Minister of State, Ministry of External Affairs, in 2004 (Congress-led U P A ministry headed by Manmohan Singh). He also served as Union Minister of State for Railways and Human Resource Development.

Ahamed served as the National President, Indian Union Muslim League between 2008 and 2017. He was the first Indian Union Muslim League union minister in independent India. In 2004, he was famously dispatched by Atal Bihari Vajpayee to the United Nations (Geneva) to represent India.

Early life

E. Ahamed was born on 29 April 1938 at Cannanore, Malabar District to Edappakath Nafeesa Beevi and Ovintakath Abdul Khader (in a merchant family). He carried his mother's 'house name' as his initials as the tradition among the Cannanore Mappilas.

He graduated from Government Brennen College, Tellicherry and later obtained a law degree from Trivandrum Law College. He was the first General Secretary of the M. S. F., the students' wing of Indian Union Muslim League. He also worked as a reporter for the Chandrika newsapaper. Ahamed married Zuhara in 1961 (died in an accident in 1999). The couple has three children.

Political career

In Kerala

Kerala Council of Ministers 1983 Karunakaran
Kerala Council of Ministers, 1982 - 87 (1983)
Mandate Legislative Assembly Constituency Party
1967 3rd Assembly Cannanore Indian Union Muslim League
1977 5th Assembly Koduvally
1980 6th Assembly Tanur
1982 7th Assembly
1987 8th Assembly
  • Ahamed served as Minister for Industry from May 1982 to March 1987 (U D F ministry headed by Congress-leader K. Karunakaran).
  • He was a member of the Kerala and Calicut University Senate. He was also Chairman, Kannur Municipal Council (1981–83).
  • He also served as the founder Chairman, Kerala State Rural Development Board (1971–77), and Chairman, Kerala Small Industries Development Corporation.
  • Ahamed was chosen as the General Secretary, Indian Union Muslim League in 1995.

Career in national politics

Mandate Constituency Party
1991 Manjeri Indian Union Muslim League
2004 Ponnani
2009 Malappuram
  • From 2004 to 2009, Ahamed served as the Minister of State for External Affairs. From 2009 to 2011, he was the Minister of State for Railways. He assumed charge again as Minister of State for External Affairs in early 2011. Ahamed also held the additional charge of the Union Minister of State, Human Resource Development 2011 to 2012.

Other positions


  • Muslim Educational Foundation, Panur, Kannur
  • Kannur Deenul Islam Sabha, Kerala


  • Board of the Medical College, Pariyaram, Kerala
  • Managing Committee, MEA Engineering College, Malappuram
  • Executive Council, Aligarh Muslim University
  • Central Haj Committee

Representing India

  • Ahamed represented India in the United Nations several times between 1991 and 2014.
  • Special Emissary, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to the Gulf (1984).
  • Chairman, Crisis Management Group (Iraq hostage crisis, August–September, 2004).

Minister in different ministries

Kerala Government
Period Portfolio Chief Minister
1982 – 1987 Industry K. Karunakaran
Union Government
Period Portfolios Prime Minister
2004 – 2014 Junior Minister
  • External Affairs (2004–09 and 2011–14)
  • Railways (2009 - 2011)
  • Human Resource Development (2011 - 2012)
Manmohan Singh


Ahamed died on 1 February 2017 after suffering a cardiac arrest in a joint session of Parliament. He was buried with full state honours at the Kannur City Juma Masjid.

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