After completing his secondary school certificate, Maqbool Butt moved on to St. Joseph College in Baramula. This was a private missionary college. Here he gained his first degree (BA) in history and political science.

Answering to a question about his college days from 1954 to 1958, in an interview with weekly ‘Zindgi’ (life) after the Ganga Hijacking in 1971, Maqbool Butt said:

“I was a good speaker. Used to do lots of strikes. Like most of Kashmiri citizens we also had great interest in Plebiscite Front. From the start we had a clear aim before us. One benefit of our strikes in college was that the government took over the control of the college”.


Khawaja Rafiq in his ‘Safeer e Hurriyat’ (the ambassador of liberation) writes that listening to the passionate and enthusiastic speeches of Maqbool Butt, the college principle Father Shankas (could not work out the correct spellings due to the name given in Urdu only) said:

“This Youngman, if managed to pass through the hardships, will become a great person. But these types of people usually face extreme difficulties in the society. The kind of freedom this type of youngsters demand is very hard to achieve. Subsequently, they get sacrificed on their way to freedom”.