Dr. Mohammed Koya’s life history (story of life) in Lakshadweep is in parallel with the legendary Mahatma. Lakshadweep’s socio-political background was literally dark and Mohammed Koya’s idea of refinement could not reach upto the people. He was largely/deeply concerned about the life of people there and he was unhappy that his ideas didn’t reach the target. His vision pointed out of the horizon of Lakshadweep and he was awake in his endeavour.
The contemporary politicians are often back of money and power and they neglected the basic needs of the poor while Mohammed Koya was a “Mahatma in his life styles and attributes. He never went behind the money.
Dr. Mohammed Koya was born in Kunnamkalam Tharavadu, a well-known family in Kalpeni on 1st of July 1942 to Attabi and Kakkkayillam Sayeed Mohammed Koya. He lost his father when he was an year old. His father was an educated man and was a good Mukthayar too. By 1950, when he was 8 years old, he lost his mother. Kunnamkalam Attabi. Now being an orphan he was under the custody of Muthiyolamma and the aunt Kunhibi. His mother Attabi was married to Kakkayillam Attakkoya after his father’s death. So his stepfather Attakkoya also took care of him. Our hero is the great grandchild of Ahammad Musliyar who was well-known in the name Pallikkainhor after the 'voli pattam' from the Suhider of Muhiddeen Palli.
His primary education and religious studies were in Kalpeni. He was famous for acting, singing and for oration/public speech even in his childhood. Even as a child he used to conduct public speeches along with his friends in different parts of Kalpeni. The Chair of these speeches was the leaders of Jamath-a-Jaseera, which was the only organization of the Island at the time. He was renowned as a singer and used to sing Baiths too. He was a regular participant in the Dikhar and Dafratheeb of the Mosque.
He studied in Kalpeni government school from 1st standard to 5th standard, and from 6th standard onwards he was in Elathur CMC High School. For Pre-University he was in Malabar Christian college, Calicut. When he was in CMC he was the school leader and the scout leader. He was a leading figure in speeches and was a good organizer too. He won first prizes for the competition in schools and was the winner in All Kerala School Elocution competition.
He worked as an LD clerk in Kalpeni High School after the completion of Pre University. He joined for Medicine in Alappuzha T.D. Medical College by resigning the post from Kalpeni. He was the college Union chairman of the Medical College and he was the man behind the historical decisions of Alappuzha. He became the centre of attraction of Alapuzha’s socio-political community. When Dr. Koya was the chairman of Alappuzha TD College, they conduct strikes against the high fee structure of the college. As a result of this the fees were unified according to the other colleges. He had a close relationship with comrades Gowri Amma and Imbichibava. He was one among the founder leaders of the All Kerala Medical Association.
In the year 1970 , the Lakshadweep students Association was formed under the presidency of Dr. Mohammed Koya and gifted to the students of Lakshadweep. After this LSA has grown and taken forms in different periods and was a solace for the students of the Island.
The three decades after 1970 witnessed revolutionary changes under the leadership of Dr. Mohammed Koya. Lakshadweep Islands underwent drastic changes in the socio-political scenario through his movements. When he came back to his homeland with an MBBS Degree it was shocking for him to be in his land seeing the pathetic situation of the land. He decided to revolt against the bourgeois attitude of the officers and against the corruptions in society. As a result of this, he was a candidate in the all upcoming election, though he couldn’t be a success in the politics. In the 1977 election, he failed miserably, but he continued to participate in the election. As part of his involvement and action among the people he became a familiar face in the Island. He served as a medical officer under the shipping corporation of India in 1978, but he resigned and became active in politics. He always said that the main evil that he has to fight was money and the dirty politics. To him power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. All through his life he was fighting against corruption, power and the hierarchy. He joined in the National Congress as a politician, but after Indira Gandhi’s death he worked under Lakshadweep Development Committee and then in Socialist Political Organisation. He was a great help to the people of the islands in the aftermath of the storm of 1977.
It was the result of his efforts that the landless of the island got lands. It was also a social reformation to the people who were under the customs of Baamid. As part of the land reformation they became free from this rituals and each individual got 10.5 cents. Drinking water was the major issue faced by the Island due to its geography and the scarcity of pure water. When the government decided to establish water tanks and bore wells, Dr. Koya agitated against this decision pointing out the environmental Issues. But the Bureaucrats and politicians didn’t take into consideration his arguments.. Dr. Koya and his fellow beings protested against the installation of pumps in the capital city Kavarathi but the government installed pump in Agathy. As part of this the people of Agathy now suffer from serious problem of water scarcity. A case was filed in the Honourable High Court of Kerala in the name of late Aranakkad Aameenkoya citing the Article 21st of the constitution. The High Court verdict was against the government and the Court asserted that the local water resources are the property of the local water resources are the property of the local people and they own fall right or them. M.P. Veerendrakumar politician and writer commented, “The court verdict ensemble the emotions and thoughts of the voiceless, powerless and the poor”. This historical verdict was by the Kerala High Court justice Chettoor Sankaran Nair in 26 February 1990. He adds that the underground water resources is only 0.6 m to 0.75 m and the recharge capacity in too low and even rare. He looked into the suggestions and studies put forward by the centre add the underlined and other technical committees.
Dr. Koya was an wholehearted reader and the reading attitude was a rare phenomenon among the politician, Koya was an exception to this. He was an ardent reader, and any discipline of books was easy for him. He managed to get all the new books from any corner of the world within a week’s time and at the same time he dwelled in the religious books and studies. Towards his end he began to dwell into the mysticism of Sufism and he was read every interpretation of the Holy Quran including the famous philosopher Imaam Gazzali’s Ihya-uloomudheen.
He was the first president cum chief counsellor of the Lakshadweep district Panchayat. The bureaucrats always tried to expel Dr. Koya and remained as an obstacle in his missions. The Housing Board Programme of the Dweep was his dream come true project.
He went to Delhi as part of his mission but no one ever thought it was his last journey. His historical and legendary life came to an unexpected end in 30th of June 2001.at AIIMS Delhi. The Sher-A-Jaseera of people bid farewell forever. His accidental death was a shock to the people of the Lakshadweep island and the people were in despair. but he still living like a lantern in the heart of people without wiped and without disappear.... Rest in peace... Aaameen!!