Galimjan Barudi (Galeev) was a theologian-scholar, religious and public figure, educator.
He was born on February 17, 1857 in Malye Kovali village, Kazan district of the Kazan province, in the family of a merchant. His family moved to Kazan when he was three years old. He studied at Madrasah Qasimiya in Kazan. In 1875, he left for Bukhara to continue his religious education. In 1882, he returned to Kazan, where he became the second imam of the White Mosque. In 1883, he established his own madrasah, naming it after his father – Muhammadiya, which became a large and prestigious religious school in Kazan that has been using a progressive audio method of teaching since 1891.
In 1887, Barudi undertook a long trip to the Ottoman Empire and Egypt. Since 1905, he devoted himself almost entirely to teaching, wrote textbooks, actively published in the press, expanded and improved the curriculum of his madrasah. In 1906, Barudi founded and headed the ad-Din wa-l-Adab journal (Religion and Morality), published in Kazan, which was banned by the authorities in 1908. In the same year, Barudi was accused of spreading pan-Islamic views and exiled to the Vologda province. In 1913, he returned from exile and resumed publication of his journal until 1917.
Barudi is the author of a number of textbooks, many of which have become classic examples of textbooks for schools and have gone through more than 10 reprints, including the first new method alphabet in Turkish (“Initial Literacy”), textbooks on arithmetic, Arabic, Tatar-Arabic-Persian dictionary etc. In January and August 1906, he participated in the work of the Second and Third Congress of Muslims of Russia, was a member of the board committee of the Muslim organization Ittifaq al-Muslimin. On May 1–2, 1917, at the All-Russian Congress of Muslims in Moscow, he was elected mufti by the majority of votes. In 1920, worrying about the fate of his unique library, he donated 4288 volumes to the Tatar Republic. Barudi’s book collection became the basis of the eastern fund of the scientific library of the Lobachevsky Institute, Kazan University. He died in Moscow on December 6, 1921, and was buried in Kazan.