HIS HOLYNESS THE GREAT Maulana Mohammad Rahmatullah Kairanvi & Madrasa Saulatiya, Mecca
- Short Book
INTRODUCTION: When the war of independence, fought with the British in India, ended in 1857 C.E., the Muslims, who had beenthe rulers of the Indian sub-continent, where the worstsufferers politically disahled, and economically ruined/ theydispersed to wherever they could find a haven.
मौलाना रहमतुल्लाह कैरानवी और उनकी पुस्तकों पर एक दृष्टि for Hindi reader and
hindi book on archive – ek mujahid memar: maulana rahmatullah kairanvi
In this hour of total discomfiture, the minds of theMuslims, not only of the contemporary generation but alsoof those which were to come one after the/oilier till far intothe twentieth century, were despoiled of their faith, andIslamic way of thought and heritage. Eminent Ulema of theIndian sub-continent had perceived that Western Political Domination would bring in its wake a new system of educa-tion, with its own system of values, and a meritorious wayof life, wholly alien to Islam. They had foreseen that newclimate would be full of reduction. There would be no placein the new order for the teaching of religion and of theclassica~ languages, in which the religious literature wascurrent. This would call for a supreme effort to keep theMuslim mind anchored to the Faith. They adopted twocourses to counteract this future trend. First they translatedpractically the entire religious literature into the vernaculartongue, Urdu, so that the Muslims of India might not behandicapped in their understanding and study of the Deen (Islam) by their ignorance of the Arabic and.Persian tongues. -The Muslims of the sub-continent are indebted to those Ulema, whose monumental work is preserved in thousands of volumes in the Urdu language for the coming generation. Secondly, they undertook a comparative study of Islam and Christianity. This was forced on them by the circumstances of that era. The U/ema had been cut to the quick by the attacks of the Christian missionaries on Islam and the Holy Prophet. They controverted their objections and arguments in open debates, and left behind a wealth of material con taininga critique of Christian beliefs and doctrines. They had but one objective-to make the Mustimmind immune to Christian propaganda and to ensure that the Muslims were not seduced into disbelief. The U/ema have rendered a valuable service indeed.
One party of the mujahids,* which bid farewell to the homeland, and emigrated to the land of the Holy Kaaba, was led by Mulana Rahmatullah Kairanvi. At Mecca Mukarrama, he with his characteristic faith and insight realized the need for an Islamic centre, which would keep alight the torch of Islamic learning, and lead to the resurgenceof Muslim power. His efforts for the achievement of this higher purpose were graced by Allah with success. One hundred five years ago in the year 1290 Hijri he laid the foundations of an institution in the Holy land. His efforts were rewarded and it flourished. Its record of service is a monumentto the sincerity and faith df that nobleman of action. Muslims all over the world are acquainted with the Darul Uloom Haram Saulatiya, which has been imparting education to Muslim students from all parts of the world.
for the last one hundred five years. But after the lapse of nearly a century, Muslims today, by and large, do not know much about the founder of the institution, Hazrat Maulana Rahmatullah Kairanvi, a man of great learning, who had a deep sense of honour, and whose life was spent in striving continually for the cause of Islam.
The Daru1 Uloom Haram Sau1atiya owes its position of importance in the very centre of Islam, to the life of its founder. A detailed account of MauJana’s life and services appeared in the” Nidai-Haram” of Rajab 1370 A.H. The brief account which is presented here is based on that of Nidai-Haram. It is hoped that it will enable the reader to catch a glimpse of history and recognise the value of the struggles and the services of the recent past.
Nazim Madrasa Saulatiya, Mecca.
Translated by :The Late Mahmood Ahmad Khan
Printed by M.K. Usmani at Technical Printers, Koocha Haji Usmani,1.1. Chundrigar Road, Karachi-Pakistan.
The Victory of Islam in the Sub-continent of India .
The month of Rajab of the year 1270 A.H. is of great significance in the religious life of the Muslims of the IndoPakistan sub-continent. In that month, Allah, Exalted, granted success to the Muslims, inspite of the political domination of the country by a Western Power, and inspite of the aggressive activities of Christian missionaries, who had fanned out throughout the country.
Times have now changed, a revolution has occurred in the ways of thought and ways of life of the people. Political rivalries, the repercussions of .international power politics, and the economic difficulties have so besieged the minds of the people, that with the so-called struggles of life and its devastating pace, it has no time for old tales. It has no time for the contemplation of the spirit and of the abiding moral values, which are the substance of life. But so long as history is read, and a living people take pride in their religious and political history and in their achievements, such old annals will continue to be read; and they will continue to inspire the generations to come, and spur them on to greater achievements. People who turn their backs on their heritage, and ignore their past and do not learn from their history, do so at the cost of their survival. The British East India Company, which came out to the East to trade, snatched a country by i.ts machinations from its Muslim rulers and despoiled it. The growing power of the British in the late eighteenth century gave a stimulus to the preaching of Christianity. The initial success’ which the Christian missionaries had with a section of community of the Hindus emboldened them to work for the conversion of the entire populace.
Conversion of the people to the faith of their rulers served the political objective of the East India Company, which was to overthrow the Muslim ruling dynasty and extend its dominion over the whole sub-continent. Christian missionary activity, was accordingly organised systemati cally by the British East India Company. It was financed. and otherwise fully aided. Missionary organisations like the Church Mission Society, the Bible Society, the Mission Fund, Mission hospitals, scheols and colleges were established throughout the part of the country which had’ come under their control. A campaign was launched with’ the help of books, newspapers, magazines and pamphlets to undermine the religious beliefs of the people and to convert them to Christianity. This ostensibly religious activity was not for the sake of the Christian faith as such. it was actually a tool of the East India Company for furthering its political ambitions. The missionary activity was subsidised’ by the Company. Its officials regarded it as their bounden duty to aid and assist, and otherwise extend their patronage to the missionary groups. A party or an organisation, which rides the coat-tails of a government,’becomes a great force. The Christian missionary movement, in consequence, had gained so much ground that, in 1857 C.E. when the question of establishing a bishopric at Delhi arose, the proposal to convert the magnificent Jamia Masjid at Delhi into a church was under serious consideration. The Moghal Emperor was then still on the throne!
This state of affairs infuriated the muslims who already hated the British for having robbed them of their political power. As the Christian missionaries, with the assistance of the entire apparatus of government, were becoming strong and aggressive, the need was felt for a vigorous defence of the frontiers of the Islamic faith. The missionaries, who had bagged large numbers of lower caste Hindus, had misjudged the fibre of the Muslims. The Muslim scholars and religious leaders could not sit quietly in the face of this conspiracy against Islam. The Muslim Ulema met the onslaught of the missionaries and blunted its force. Their Jehad struggle saved the day for Islam. But for their monu mental efforts, many Musalmans of the Indian sub-continent might have fallen prey to the missionaries.
Maulana Hali, one of the greatest Indian reformers and poets of the late nineteenth century of the Christian era eulogises the Ulema in the following terms:
“The Islamic faith in India was surrounded by grave dangers. On the one hand Christian missionaries were an set to prey upon the Muslims. Although during the days of the famine a few lean preys fell to them here and there, they were not satisfied with their progress. They were constantly in searcl1 of something big and spectacular. Their eyes were on the Muslims of India. In their sermons, newspapers and magazines a heavy barrage of propaganda was directed agamst Islam. They would falsify Islamic teaching and present it in an un favourable light. They were wont to criticise the person and character of the Holy Prophet. Several Muslims fell prey to their deceptive propaganda mostly because of their ignorance of the Islamic faith, and because they were destitute and poor, and stood to gain financially. The Ulema (Muslim Scholars) like Maulana Al-e-Hasan, Maulana Rahmatullah and Dr. Wazir Khan, recognised the growing danger. They wrote several books in affirmation of Islam and the rebuttal of Christian doctrines. They also held open debates with Christian scholars. These activities had a salutary effcet. Though these activities had not been started under the aegis of a party they were properly organised. The mosques throughout the country were the strongholds of the Ulema. This revolutionary movement, therefore, did not face any difficulty in getting off to a start. It only wanted a leader and there could be none more eminently suitable than Maulana Rahmatullah. He organised this movement and appointed Delhi and Agra as its centres. At Agra too he continued to write and publish his works. His party included a large number of extremist Musalmans who were the followers of Hazrat Ismail Shaheed.”
Padre Fonder refers to this movement in these words: “The Ulema of Agra and the Ulema of Delhi together have been engaged for the last two or three years in the study of the Bible, the critical literature of Western scholars, and the commentaries, in order to prove our holy book as false. The result of this effort was that a scholar of Delhi, Molvi Rahmatullah (Kairanvi) wrote two books. He came to Agra with his colleagues in January, 1854, when I was not here, to make arrangements for the printing of his books. An open debate took place. About one hundred Muslim scholars were present to assist Molvi Rahmatullah. Their number doublcd on the following day.
” These ULema used to devote their time to the rebuttal of Christian doctrines, without any compensation or reward. Their pupils, who were present in every province and district, also used to devote their time to this task. The Ulema at the headquarters moved out only if there was something extraordinary. This used to have the desired effect both on the Christian missionaries and the Muslim populace. The reports of the missionaries mention these facts in a manner which is contentious and calculated to cover up the failure of their mission. But from the record of events and the way things have been presented by the Christian missionaries the truth is evident that in every district the Ulema met their challenge boldly and discomfited them.
Padre French, who had the charge of Multan, says in his report :
“The Mullahs, the Syeds and the Makhdooms of Multan were making a concerted effort to keep out the light of God. All of them were the friends of two well known persons Molvi Rahmatullah and Dr. Wazir Khan, who as champions of Islam had had a public debate with Dr. Fonder.” Maulana Syed Sulaiman Nadvi in his preface to the life of Shibli says:
“When the Btitish came to power (in India), attacks from three directions were lanuched (against the Muslims. Christian missionaries, with the help of their new found political power, began to attack the faith of Islam. From another direction, the Arya movement of the Hindus (the idol-worshippers), who had now become free from their Muslim rulers, grew bold enough to attack the faith and culture of the Musalmans. From the third direction European learning and culture with its outward glitter began to subjugate the Muslim mind. For meeting the onslaught of the Christian missionaries, Allah raised up men like Maulana Rahmatullah Kairanvi and Dr. Wazir Khan (of Agra), and later Maulana Mohammad Qasim Nanotwi, Maulana Raham Ali Manglori, Maulana Inayet RasuIChirya-koti, Maulana Syed Mohammad Ali Mongheri and others. They took the Christian objections and criticism apart. At this juncture the presence of Dr. Wazir Khan and Maulana Rahmatullah in particular, was a Divine help. Who could imagine that in these times of degeneration and political defeat a man like Dr. Wazir Khan, who was an accomplished scholar of Christian lore and their religious books, fully conversant with their secrets, and with the Hebrew and Greek languages, would rise to face Padre Fonder and the Christian missionaries? Who could believe that a man like Dr. Wazir Khan would turn the tables on them with the help of their own books and prove them guilty of perverting their faith! He joined hands with Maulana Rahmatullah and vindicated the position of Islam as the impregnable faith.
“The person of Maulana Mohammad Qasim was like.. wise a sign of Divine help in fighting Dayanand Saraswatlof the Hindu Aryas. Mau1.ana Mohammad Qasim and Maulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi rose up to preach the true faith and to counte!:, the evil propaganda and the false doctrives of the mushriks. The manner in which this was done and the lasting results that were achieved are now before us.
” The memorable public debate between Maulana Rahmatullah and Padre Fonder was held at Agra in the month of Rajab 1270 A.H. The truth triumphed at Agra, as it had in other smaller districts, and the falsity of Christian doctrines was exposed. An account of this confrontation is given elsewhere in this booklet. The Muslims of IndoPakistan sub-continent today know Maulana Rahmatullah as the founder of Madrasa Saulatiya at Mecca Moazzama, but generally they do not have an idea of his outstanding personality and of his dedicated efforts in the defence of Islam. A brief account of the life of Maulana Rahmatullah (May Allah have mercy on him) is presented here.
Maulana Rahmatullah was born in the month of Jamadiul-oola 1233 A.H., at Kairana town of Muzaffarnagar District, (Northern India). His home was in Mohallah Darbar Kalan. It is mentioned in some old manuscript records that Kairana had once b~en the capital city of Chauhan Rajputs (a Hindu clan). Rana Kalsa, the Hindu ruler of Kairana was a contemporary of Sultan Mahmood of Ghazmi.. It was during his reign that Syed Salar Masood Ghazi as the head of a party of mujahids invaded India, and passing through Jhinjana attacked Kairana. The tombs of the shaheeds exist to this day in the northern and western outskirts of the town. One tomb in the north which is a few yards long is said to be the collective grave of the Arab shaheeds. The salari community which still inhabits the town is a reminder of the invasion led by Syed Salar Masood Ghazi. These people are of Arab descent. They were the first to inhabit the city and to this day most of them tend camels. During the Tughlak regime, Shaikh Alauddin Ansari was appointed as Qazi for this area. This led to the settlement of Ansars in the town. Kakarzai Afghans came to this place during the reign of Sher Shah Suri. Their descendants still live there.
The Maulaoa’s Nasab (Genealogy) This is the genealogy of Maulana Rahmatullah. . Rahmatullah son of Khalilullah alias Kha]iJur Rahman son of Hakim Najeebullah son of Hakim Habibullah, son of Hakim Abdur Rahim son of Hakim Qutbuddin, son of Hakim Shaikh Hakim Fuzail, son of Hakim Diwan Abdur Rahim (brother of Nawab Muqarrab Khan), son of Hakim Abdul Karim alias Hakim Beena, son of Hakim Hasan, son of Abdus Samad son of Bu-Ali son of Mohammad Yousuf son of Abdul Qadir son of the saint Kabirul Awlia Jalaluddin Mohammad, son of Mahmood, son of Yaqub, son of Isa, son of Ismail, son of Mohammad Taqi, son of Abi Bakr, son of Ali Naqi, son of Usman, son of Abdullah, s(m of Shahabuddin, son of Shaikh Abdur Rahman Gazroni, son of Abdul Aziz Sarakhsi, son of Khalid, son of Walid, son of Abdul Aziz, son of Abdur Rahman Kabir Madani, son of Abdullah as-Sani, son of Abdul Aziz Kabir, son of Abdullah Kabir, son of Amr son of Ameer-ul-Momineen Zun-Noorain Seyadna U sman bin Affan, (May Allah be pleased with him !)
The genealogy of the descendants of Khalifa Usman is preserved in the old records available at the shrine of Hazrat Kabirul-Awlia Makhdoom Jalaluddin at Panipat Several descendants of Hazrat Usman who live at Panipat have got copies of this family tree. The names of all Usmani Jalalis*. were recorded in the genealogical table in the presence of at least twenty prominent persons descended from Jalaluddin.
Makhdoom Kabirul Awlia, who was a contemporary of the great Saint Bu Ali Qalandar of Panipat, had on several occasions requested the Qalandar to admit him formally to his order of disciples. Qalandar Sahib used to put him off by saying, “your teacher is about to appear. Be patient. We will tell you when the time comes.” When Hazrat Khawja Shamsuddin Turk a very famous religion saint was on his way to Panipat, Qalandar Sahib asked Kabirul Awlia to go out of the town to meet and welcome his teacher to Panipat. When he rode out he met afaqir**. After salutations, Khawja Sahib said, “Young man, let me see how you manage your horse. ” He spurred his horse and rode at a gallop. Khawja Sahib was pleased and remarked “what a horse and what a rider!” Makhdoom Jalaluddin suddenly had a feeling of ecstacy, and he fell from the horse. Khawja Sahib embraced him and in the moment of embrace imparted to him the spiritual power. The Khawja admit,ted him to his order of
* descendants of Jalaluddio, a descendant of Hazrat Usman. ** A man of God,
disciples and nominated him as his khalifa. Qalandar Sahib had initiated Mokhdoom Jalaluddin into contemplation and the study of the world of spirit, which was accomplished under the tutorship of Khawja Shamsuddin Turk Panipati. Makhdoom Sahib died at Panipat on 13th Rabiul A wwal 765 AH. His descendants lived for centuries in Mohalla Makhdumzadgan but they were uprooted during the revolution of 1947.
The Advent of Osmanis in India Sultan Mohmood Ghaznavi was a deeply religious man. He was a great patron of the Ulema, the poets and the Scholars. The Ulema enjoyed a distinctive position in his army. Shaikh Abdur Rahman Gazroni the ancestor of Maulana RahmatuIlah, was a Sharai Hakim* in the Sultan’s army. The office of the Qazi-e., Askar (Judge of the army) was a permanent office also during the caliphate of Osmani Turks. Prominent scholars of repute were appointed to this office until the reign of the last Khalifa Sultan Mohammad Reshad Khan V. They had absolute jurisdiction over all Sharia matters pertaining to the army. Shaikh Gazroni (Gazron is a well-known place in the vicinity of Shiraz, Persia) came to India with Sultan Mahmud as his Qazi-eAskar. When the Sultan invaded the Hindu stronghold and temple at Somnath, the Shaikh also took part in the crusade (jehad). After the consequent of Panipat he settled there. He lies buried close to the fort of Panipat.
Maulana Rahmatullah, Hakim Mohammad Hasan, and Hakim Abdur Rahim were the great grandsons of Hakim .
*A judge who enforces the Sharia Law.
Abdul Karim known as Hakini Bina. When Moghal Emperor Akbar was on his way back to the capital from Kashmir, he was entertained to a deer-fight one moonlit night near Lahore. One of the deer suddenly attacked Akbar and gored his thighs with its horns. When his condition grew worse, Hakim Bina was summoned from Panipat at the instance of Abul Faza1. Hakim Bina treated Akbar and he recovered after about. a month. He conferred the title of “Shaikh-uz-Zaman” on Hakim Bina and granted the estate of Kairanato his son Hakim Mohammad Hasan, who had assisted his father in the treatment of the Emperor.
Hakim Mohammad Hasan was the personal physician of Prince Saleem who conferred on him the title of Muqarrab Khan. When Saleem succeeded to the throne as Emperor Jehangir he awarded to him the titles of Muqarrabul Khaqan and Naibus Sultan, and the position of the Commander of five thousand (soldiers). Shortly after coming to the throne Jehangir appointed Nawab Muqarrab Khan as the Governor of the Deccan and Gujrat. In 1618 C.E. when Shahjehan, then a prince, was deputed to the eastern part of the empire, Muqarrab Khan was appointed Governor of Bihar. Hodges, the English traveller and painter had come to Patna in 1620 C.E. during his governorship and had been his guest. Hodges was greatly impressed by th~ man, his power and his kindly treatment of himself. His letters give an account of the Nawab, and are full of his sense of gratitude towards him. The Nawab was appointed Governor of Delhi and Agra in 1621 C.E., and, when Shahjehan ascended the throne, he awarded him an additional estate in the vicinity of Kairana. Hakim Rizqullah Khan, son of the Nawab was the Royal Physician of Shahjehan, and the Commander of eight hundred.. Emperor Aurangzeb Alamgir granted the title of Khani to Rizqullah Khan. He died in 1668 C.E.
Diwan Abdur Rahim and Diwan Abdul Hakim, the younger brothers of Nawab Muqarrab Khan, also occupied prominent positions at the court. Diwan Abdur Rahim was the Royal Physician of Emperor Jehangir. His descendants practise medicine to this day. Several descendants of Diwan Abdur Rahim rose to positions of eminence in the practice of medicine. Hakim Wajeehuddin, the author of Makhzane-Hikmat ] 196 A.H.), a book on eastern medicine, and Hakim Ali Akbar, brother of Maulana Rahmatullah are well known.
When Emperor Akbar granted the estate of Kairana to Hakim Bina, the house of Usmani Jalalis migrated from Panipat to settle there. They enlarged the town, built houses and public buildings, planted gardens and enriched the life of the local people. The Nawab’s garden was famous for its beauty, for its pool and pavilion, and chiefly for its variety of mangoes. Jehangir in the sixteenth year of his reign paid a visit to Kairana at the request of Muqarrab Khan. In his Memoirs, Jehangir writes:
“It was the long-standing wish of our sincere and loyal, loving and faithful friend Muqarrab Khan that I should visit his place. I paid a visit to his house and by my presence made it on enviable place. I gave the old faithful friend a gift of some precious stones and other valuables, Rupees three lacs, a garden and a large residential house.
The revolution of 1857 C.E. destroyed a rich Muslim civilization and its glorious legacies The Kairana garden, whose mangoes, according to the author of Tajul Ala’asir” were relished by the people of Delhi for centuries wasravaged. The ground, where it once existed, is sti1l known as Naulakha Zamin (the land of the nine hundred thousand). It is said that there were nine hundred thousand plants and trees of different kinds in the garden. The traces of the pavilion built by Muqarrab Khan still exists. When he was the governor of Gujrat he had seven ships salvaged, which had sunk in Surat harbour years ago. Among the goods recovered, there were a few solid pillars of touchstone. Pillars of this semi-precious stone are rare and of great value. Jehangir was apprised of the details of the goods recovered from the ships, which he bestowed on Muqarrab Khan as a gift. He built a small pavilion in the middle of the pool with these pi1lars as underpins. The touchstone pillars are now a part of the Qalandar Sahib’s shrine at Panipat.
East of the garden was a row of buil.dings which housed offices. courts and stables. It was known as the durbar. The palace and residential houses were on the other side of the garden. This area is now known as the Nawab Darwaza. Ruins of these imposing buildings still exists as a reminder of the glory of bye-gone years. The tomb of Nawab Muqarrab Khan is in the compound of the shrine Qalandar Sahib at Panipat. Its headstone is of one-piece of zahr mohra, a semi precious stone. It is said to be of twenty seven maunds in weight. It is not known with certainty where Diwan Abdur Rahim is buried.
Early life of education Maulana Rahmatullah was born in one of these historical buildings of his forefathers in the Mohalla Durbar. He completed the study of the Quran at the age of twelve and learnt theology and Persian from the elders of his house. He then went to Delhi and joined the M adrasa of Maulana Mohammad Hayat, where he also lodged. When the Maulana’s father Molvi Khalilullah in 1250 A.H., took up the position of chief agent of Maharaja Hindu Rao at Delhi, he shifted to his father’s house. After a while the Maulana with some of his colleagues went to Lucknow for further studies and became the pupil of Mufti Saadullah.
The list of the teachers of Maulana Rahmatullah in cludes the following illustrious names:
- Maulana Mohammad Hayat of Delhi.
- Maulana Mufti Saadullah.
- Maulana Ahmad Ali of Badoli (Muzaffarnagar) who later became the Prime Minister of Patiala State.
- Arif Billah Maulana Abdur Rahman Chishti. He was the tutor of the King and an accomplished scholar. Among the fellow pupils of the Maulana at this time were Manlana Abdur Rahman Punjabi, Maulana Syed Mohammad Ali, who was later re~ vered as a saint. Maulana Shah Abdur Rahman Chishti and Maulana Mohammad Hayat were buried in Basti Nizamuddin Aulia, Delhi. 4
- Molvi Imam Baksh Sahbai.
- Hakim Faiz Mohammad a renowned physician of his time. Following the family tradition the Maulana studied medicine.
- He also studied mathematics.
Teaching carrier The Maulana’s career in India as a teacher was brief. The times were difficult. Political and social changes had created disturbed conditions. The growing power of the Christians, and the aggressive posture of their missionaries, weighed heavily on his mind. tIe could not, therefore, settle down as a teacher. After completing his education, he set up a school in the mosque of Darbar Kairana, where he taught for a few years, until the memorable debate with the Christians at Agra brought this career to an end.
The names of a few notable Ulerna, who were his students at this time, and who later continued their education at Mecca Moazzama, are given below:
- Maulana Abdus Sami Rampuri, author of Harnde-bari.
- Maulana Ahmaduddin Chakwali,
- Maulana Noor Ahmad Amratsari,
4.Maulana Shah Abdul khairi,
5.Maulana Shah Sharful Haq Siddiqi,
- Molvi Qari Shahabuddin Usmani Kairanvi,
7.Maulana Hafizuddin Dujanvi,
- Maulana Imam Ali Usmani Kairanvi,
9.Maulana Abdul Wahab Vellori, founder of Madasa Baqiyat-us-Salehat, Madras (India),
10.Maulana Badrul Islam Usmani Kairanvi, Director of the Royal Hamidia Library at Constantinople (Istanbul).
The Maulana was married to one of his relatives in 1256 A.H. He and his father were recalled to his service by Maharaja Hindu Rao at Delhi in the following year, where he acted as the Maharaja’s chief agent. The Maulana’s father, Molvi Khalilullah died after a short while. The Maulana thereafter decided to give up service and return to Kairana, in order to attend to family problems. He had his younger brother, Molvi Mohammad Jalil, appointed in his place, and returned home. Here he set up his Madrasa and also devoted his attention to the serious situation arising out of the attack of Christian missionaries on Islam, which were growing sharper. He now began work on his book, lzalatul-Auham.
While he was working on this book, he fell ill. His condition grew so serious that he could not move, and could say his daily prayers only by signs. There was no improvement in his condition. This was a cause Qf great anxiety to his family and his students. One day after the morning !.fajr) prayers, his eyes filled ,with tears; and he started crying. Those with him thought that he had despaired of his recovery, and began to comfort him. He said to them, “By Allah’ there is apparently no indication that I shall recover, but, God willing, I will, very soon. I cried because last night I saw in a dream that the Holy Prophet, peace be on
him, had come accompanied by Siddiqi-i-Akbar, Abu Bakr. The Great Siddiq said to me, “Young man, here are good tidings for you from the Messenger of Allah: if your work on the book Tzafatul-Auham has been the cause of this illness, the same will be the cause of your recovery.” I was comforted and infinitely pleased to hear the good tiding, and I wept for joy.” Christians’ attacks on Islam The Maulana recovered soon after and resumed his work on the book. Those were the days when the sordid campaign of Christian missionaries against Islam had creattd unrest throughout the sub-continent. Padre C.C.P. Fonder was at the head of this campaign. His speeches and his book, Meezanul Haq had caused great resentment among the Muslims. The Ulema had so far silently ignored the missionary activity. This attitude had on the one hand emboldened the Christians, and on the other, was beginning to have a demoralising effect on those, who were illiterate. The Ulema, therefore, decided to counter the missionary attacks in a firm manner. They collected material for this purpose in order to strive in the cause of Allah, and vindicate the position of Islam as the true faith. The Maulana was the first person to lead this crusade against the Christians. He announced. “I have asked the leading Padre of India (Dr. Fonder) who occupies a prominent position in Christiandom, and who is the author of Mi;:,anul Haq, to meet me in an open debate, so that the truth is established, and it becomes known to all that the
U/ema had ignored the pamphlets issued by Christian missionaries (containing attacks on Islam), because they regarded them as unworthy and undeserving of rebuttal, and not because they had nothing to say in this regard.” The debate with Fonder The Maulana accompanied by his friend, Molvi Mohammad Amirullah, Mir Mukhtar of the Raja of Benaras (who was acquainted with Padre Fonder), called on the Padre at his house, but he was not at home. The Maulana wrote a letter to him on 23rd March, 1854 C.E.; and after the exchange of several letters, the subject of the debate and date and place for it were appointed. After the preliminaries had been settled by mutual agreement the first session of the debate was held on the morning of 11th Rajab, 1270 A.H. (lOth ApriI1854), in Katra Abdul Masih, Agra. Maulana Rahmatullah was assisted by Dr. Mohammad Wazir Khan, and Dr. Fonder was assisted by Padre French. The debate was attended by Smith, District Revenue Officer; Christians Chairman of the Provincial Board; William, the local magistrate; Lately the Government’s spokesman; Padre William Gilben, Mufti Riazuddin, Molvi Faiz Ahmad, Molvi Hazur Ahmed, Molvi Amirullah, Molvi Qamrul Islam, the Imam of Jamia Masjid, Agra; Munshi Khadim Ali, manager of the newspaper Mat/aul Akbar; and Munshi Sirajul Haq, among others. The place was full of people as they were interested in the outcome of the debate. It should be noted that the Christians had the backin~ of the Government. The British were an alien people, and their conquest of the country was both recent and ruthless, and the people .
had been cowed down and strangulated economically. But in the defence on Islam they knew no fear. First Padr~ Fonder addressed the audience in these words: “It is necessary to know how this debate waS “fixed. It is du~ to the wishes and persistence of JVfaulana . Rahmatullah. I do not think that it will be of any advantage, or a result will Come out of it. It is, however, my ardent desire to present the true nature of the Christian religion b~fore the Muslims. The subjects of this debate are: abrogation of earlier revelations and interpolations in the text of the Bible, the divinity of Christ; his life and the doctrine of trinity; and the prophethood of Mo hammad (peace be on him).” Maulana Rahmatullah then opened the debate on abrogation and the corruption of the text of the Bible. He proved that the text of the Bible had been forged and corrupted, both from internal evidence and by citing several works of Christian scholars in evidence. Finally Padre Fonder, in reply to a question put to him by Or. Wazir Khan, adlhitted that in seven or eight places the original text of the Bible had been changed. Molvi Qamrul Islam, the Imam of lamia Masjid, asked Munshi Khaditn Ali to record that Padre Fonder had admitted that the text of the Bible had been forged in seven or eight places. Fonder said “yes, yes, do record it, the text has been corrupted to this extent only but the holy books have not suffered from any defect because of it.” The Maulana said, “if a single item in a legal docu ment is proved to be forged, the entire document is regarded as unreliable. In the case of the Bible, Padre Fonder has
admitted forgery in seven or eight places, and he would still like us to believe that the book is reliable.” At this stage, the debate was adjourned at the instance of Fonder. The next day the debate was resumed at the appointed time and place. As it had received wide publicity, there was an audience of over one thousand prominent persons on the second day. A few prominent Hindus like Dr. Mukand Lal, Hakim Jawaher Lal, Raja Balwan Singh Kashi, and Pandit Jugal Kishore were also present. , I Debate was continued on the subject of forgeries in the text of the Bible. Christian scholars began to hedge and prevaricate. But they were cornered and they could not stave off defeat. It is natural for tempers to rise in such a situation. Padre French, therefore, began to show temper and, the debate proved inconclusive. Fonder thereafter avoided meeting Maulana Rahmatullah in open public debate and, entered into correspondence with Dr. Mohammad Wazir Khan. The exchange of letters which began on 1st May, 1854 C. E. ended on 16th August, 1854. Fonder had been discomfitted in open debate. Dr. Wazir, therefore, in his first letter to Fonder wrote: “You should first give a reply to the questions raised by Maulana Rahmatullah. If you still wish to go on with the open debate, you should admit that the text of the Bible has been forged or corrupted in several places and, that the Bible has been superseded and its laws abrogated by the Holy Quran. We will then take up the question of trinity for debate, and when that issue is settled we shall discuss the prophethood of the last of the prophets, Mohammad, peace be on him.”
The Maulana had repeatedly asserted that the Christians’ call to people to embrace Christianity was a great deception as “their Gospel is not wholly authentic. It has suffered from forgeries and corruption of the text, on a large scale, at the hands of Christian priests; and since the original Gospel does not exist anywhere, the very foundations of the Christian faith are hollow,” It was an important condidition of the Agra confrontation that the Maulana would embrace Christianity if he were unable to satisfy the objections of Fonder; and in the other eventuality, Fonder would embrace Islam. The Maulana’s task in the debate was (a) to prove the prophethood of the Holy Prophet, peace be on him, (b) to prove that the Holy Quran is a Divine Book, and that it has been preserved in its original and pure state to this day, no attempt having been made ever to make interpolations in the text, (c) to prove the doctrine of trinity as false and, to prove that large scale forgeries have been made in the text of the Bible. Fonder, on the other hand, had to justify the doctrine of trinity. He had to prove that the existing Gospel was the same scriptures which Jesus Christ preached, that is, there had been no attempt at forgery or replacement of the text. The Maulana, by the Grace of Allah, proved in the two-day debate that the existing Gospel which the Christians are proud of, was a forgery and was not the original and complete Scriptures. Fonder admitted the fact of the forgeries before the public.
The debate was not held on the third day. Fonder , I s.void~d the public debate, and in order to save face, wrote a letter to the Maulana saying: “I accept at face value the Biblical references which you quoted in the debate. But I am sending you here. with an explanatory note which will show that the references quoted by you do not mean what you understood. ”
If Fonder had thought that he had made good his escape, he Was mistaken. The Maulana wrote a detailetl reply refuting his arguments. Cotrespondence 011 this sub ject continued till the 23rd April, 1854. The proceedings of the Agra debate were compiled by Waziruddin and published by Hafiz Abdullah at Fakhrul Matabe, Delhi, in 1270 A. H. under the title of Al-bahth al sharif-fi-isbat unnaskh wat tallrif (debate on the abrogation of earlier scriptures, and interpolations in the text of the Bible). It was distributed to all parts of India by order of the Crown Prince, Mirza Fakhruddin son of Sirajuddin Bahadllr Shah’ Zafar, the Moghal Emperor. The book contains the proceedings of the public debate, and some letters ~xchanged between the Maulana and Padre Fonder. The proceedings were also printed in tWo volumes, at Agta (Akbar-Abad) by Matba Munamiah and published by Syed Abdullah Akbarabadi in 1211 A. H. The first part tobtairis the proceedings of the debate in the Persian lan guage, in which the debate was carried on between Dr. Mohammad Wazir Khan and Dr. Fonder. The Arabic translation of this book was printed on the margin of the book Izharul Huq
Huq published at Cairo in 1317 A. H., by Matba Mahmoodiah. In order to stem the onslaught of the Christian missionaries and to counter their propaganda against Islam, the Maulana wrote the following books in rejection of Christianity
- Izharul Huq (The Declaration of truth)
The book was written in Arabic at the instance of Khalifa Sultan Abdul Aziz of Turkey, and Khairuddin Pasha Tunisi, the grand wazir. It contains a detailed account of the Agra debate, and a comprehensive discussion of several other tenets of the Christian faith. The Maulana undertook this work at Constantinople (Istanbul) on the 16th Rajab, 1280 A: H. and completed it in late Zil Hijjah of the same year. It was first published at Constantinople in 1281 A. H. The Grand Wazir, had it translated into the Turkish language, and printed under the title, Abrazul Haq. The Sultan’s government had the book translated and published in several European languages which the Christian priests took great pains to suppress. The book went through several editions in Egypt. Molvi Saleemullah had translated the book into Urdu but it could not be published(now published name“Bible se quran tak”. Molvi Ghulam Mohammad Bhanja-randeri translated it into Gujrati language, which has been published. When the English translation of the b’ook was published, the Times of London, in its review, said that, the progress of Christianity would cease if people were
Original Title: Izhar ul Haq –
Truth Revealed Maulana M Rahmatullah Kairanvi Volume 4 – Volumes [Hardcover],
to go on reading this book. An Urdu translation of the book is now being printed by Darul-Uloom, Korangi, Karachi. This is the sole book in rejec tion of Christianity which has not been challenged by Christendom. The Izharul Haq consists of six detailed chapters on the following subjects:
(a) A critical examination of the books of the Old and New Testament.
(b) Proof of forgeries in the text of the Bible.
(c) Proof of the annulment of the Bible and its supercession by the Holy Quran.
- d) That the doctrine of trinity is concocted and false.
(e) That the Holy Quran is the Word of Allah.
(f) 2. Proof of the Prophethood of Mohammad,!I peace be on him, and answers to the criticism of the Christian priests.
اظہار الحق دفاع اسلام اور رد مسیحیت کے موضوع پر لکھی گئی ایک کتاب ہے، جس کے مصنف مولانا رحمت اللہ کیرانوی ہیں جنہوں نے یہ کتاب ایک مسیحی مبلغ کارل گوٹلیب فینڈر کی کتاب میزان الحق کے جواب میں لکھی تھی۔ دونوں کتب عربی میں ہیں۔ اظہار الحق کا اردو ترجمہ مفتی محمد تقی عثمانی نے “بائبل سے قرآن تک” کے نام سے کیا ہے۔ یہ تین جلدوں پر مشتمل ہے۔
- lzalatul Auham (Removal of Misconceptions)
This book is in Persian and contains 564 pages. It was printed bySyed Qewamuddin at Syedul MMabe, Kucha Bulaqi Begum, Delhi in 1269 A. H. It deals with the objections raised by Padre Fonder in his book Meezanul Haq, and forcefully rejects the claim of Christianity to be the. true faith.
- Izalatush Shukook (Removal of Doubts)
This book contains answers to the twenty nine questions which contemporary Christian scholars
had put to the Muslim Ulema regarding Islam. It was written and published in 1268 A.H. (1854 C.E.) in two volumes (1116 pages). The book was written at the instance of the Crown Prince Mohammad Fakhruddin.
Izalah Tul Shukook ازالۃ الشکوک Vol 2
- Ijaz-i Eeswi (The Miracle of Jesus).
The book was written at Agra in 1229 A.H It was first published at Agra. The second edition was printed at Matba Rizvi, Delhi. It contain’s 200 pages and proves that the New Testament is unreliable and is not the Divine Book which was revea. led to Jesus Christ.
- Ahsanul Ahadith fi Ibtalit Tathlith. (Arguments proving the doctrine of trinity to be false)
The book was written in 1271 A. H. and printed at Matba Rizvi, Delhi in 1291 A.H. 6. Burooq-e-Lamea (The Bright Flashes) The book gives proof of the prophethood of the Holy Prophet. It also proves that he was the Last Prophet, and no prophet will ever appear after him. The book is unpublished.
- Al-bahth-us-Sharif fi lthbat un Naskh, wat Tahrif (A treatise on the abrogation and corruption Of the Bfuk) .
Pages 56, Printed at Fakhrul Matabe Delhi in 1270 A.H.
- Mauddil Ewajajul Mizan* The book was written inl refutation of Fonder’s book Meezanul Haq. It was not published, but from Padre Safdar Ali’s article in the magazine, Noor A/shan of 24th July, 1884 C.E. it appears that he had a manuscript of the book with him.
- Taqleebul Mala’in (The Reversal of Objections) The book was written in refutation of Padre Los mond’s book Tahqeeq-e-Din-e-Haq. It is unpub lished.
- Mayarut Tahqeeq (The standard of Research) This book answers the various objections raised by Padre Safdar AU, the Indian Christian, in his book, Tahqeequ/-Imam. THE REVOLUTION OF 1857 C. E. The Moghal power in India had been on the decline since the latter half of the eighteenth century. The Revolu tion of 1857 brought ab:)ut the overthrow of the Moghals and the complete domination of the Indian sub-continent by the British. The dissensions among the Muslim rulers, and the Muslims’ neglect of their faith and their polity, led to this catastrophe. But among the Ulema there was a group, which believed in action and regarded it as a duty imposed by faith. Those Ulema took to the field of battle to do their duty.
They rolled in blood and dust, They blazed a trial of glory, May the Lord have Mercy On these lovers pure and good. (Hafiz Shirazi)
The Shaikhs and MusHm Gujars owned most of the land in the district around Kairana and ShamIi. They were deeply attached to their faith and they were courageous people. They opened a front against the British with Thana Bhawan and Kairana as its axis. The mujahids fought the British forces and attacked ShamIi tehsil. The mujahid movement had steadily gained wide support. Ha,ji lmdaduIlah, May Allah have mercy on him, and Mol vi Abdul Hakim Thanvi were in command in Thana Bhawan. Maulana Rahmatullah and Chowdhury Azimuddill the head of the Gujar community fought against the British forces in Kairana. During this period the mujahids used to gather to the call of the drum at the step of Kairana’s lamia Masjid after asr (afternoon prayers). Before the orders of the day ~ were communicated the announcement would be made.
The land belongs to Allah and Command vests in Molvi Rahmatullah.
Kairana had developed into a strong front against the British, and there was apparently no reason to suspect that the mujahids would be defeated. But the activities of some traitors, who were in league with the British, and the conspiracies hatched by their spies changed the. situation. British infantry and artillery entered Kairana. The artillery took up position in front of Mohallah Durbar, which was
surrounded; and men, women and children were brutally dragged out of their homes. The search was on for Maulana Rahmatullah, as the spies had reported that he was in hiding in the Durbar. The Maulana with the remnants of his followers had escaped to Panjeeth, a nearby village, inhabited by Muslim Gujars, who had also taken part in the fighting. A detachment of British cavalry was deputed to Panjeeth to arrest the Maulana. The news reached the Maulana and the headman of the village in no time. The headman immediately dispersed the party of mujahids and asked the Maulana to pick up a hoe, go out in the field and work as a farm hand. There was no time to lose and the Maulana was out working in the field. Moments later the British cavalry rode at a gallop through the field where he was working. The Maulana said in later years “I was hoeing in the field and 1 . saw them riding past by me. The dust and pebbles raised by the hoofs of tl1eir horses hit me as they galloped away.” JOURNEY TO THE HEJAZ 11’1 The British cavalry surrounded the village, arrested the headman, and searched every house, but they could not lay their hands on the Maulana. The f0rce returned to Kairana and, resistance having come to an end. the area came under the complete control of the British. Warrants for the arrest of the Maulana were issued and, he was declare~ a rebel and absconder. A reward of Rupees one thousand for his arrest was also announced. The Maulana under’ the alias of Muslehuddin journeyed on foot to I)elhi. This was a time of great trial and tribulations for him. During this period
Allah sustained his ,courage, determination and perseverance. He patiently endured the severe difficulties he faced. He continued his jOUlney on foot through the desert of Jodhpur and the dangerous wastes of Rajputana (now Rajisthan) and reached SUrat. It was then a prominent port on the west coast of India, well known for the traffic of Muslim pilgrims to the Hejaz. The sea voyage in those days was not an easy proposition, as the sailing ships depending on favourable winds, could sail outwards normally once in a year. Carriage of a letter used to cost four Rupees. Those who wished to give up their homes and emigrate to the Holy Land of the Hejaz, had perforce to sever all connections with their family and friends for good, because of the difficult means of communication. After his departure from India, the entire estate belonging to the Maulana and to every member of his family was confiscated. The Maulana’s lands, serais and other property in Panipat were identified by the British spy, Kamaluddin. The entire property was sold for a song. Worth several lacs of Rupees, it was auctioned for only Rupees one thousand four hundred and twenty. This is part of the official record of Karnal district for the year 1862 C. E. Some other lands were confiscated. RAHMATULLAH IN BAITULLAH This courageous man of action, after ~oing through the perils of an arduous journey reached the centre of Islam. He wished to serve the cause of rslam in some form here at Mecca under the blessed walls of the Holy Kaabah. Several Ulema belonging to this. group of mujahids had emigrated
to the Hejaz. Hazrat Haji Imdadullah who was one of them, had reached Mecca earlier. The Maulana reached Mecca at dawn one day and headed straight for the Kaabah. While performing tauaf (circumambulation) he met Haji Sahib. They performed the tawafand sa’i (seven rounds between the rocks of Safa and Marwah) together and returned to the Dawoodia hostel. Syed Ahmad Dahlan was then the Shaikhul Ulema. He taught in the Masjid Haram and, his lectures were attended by a large number of students and other people. Sharif Abdullah bin Awn bin Mohammad was the Governor of Mecca. Sultan Abdul Aziz reigned as the Khalifa at Constantinople. The Maulana used to meet the U/ema and teachers often in the Haram and attend the lectures of the Shaikh, who belonged to the Shafei school. One day in his discourse on a point of fiqh he extolled the Shafei viewpoint and tried to show the weakness in the Hanafi standpoint on the same question. After the discourse was over, the Maulana met the Shaikh. and requested him, as a student, for a clarification of the point which had been the subject of his discourse. The Shaikh realized after a brief discussion that he was no student, and asked him to introduce himself. The Maulana did so briefly. The Shaikh invited him to dinner at his home the next day. The Maulana and his close friend Hazrat Haji Imdadullah spent a long time with the Shaikh the following day. He gave a detailed account of the revolution of 1857 in India and, of the fall of the Muslims from power, of the Christian’s missionary activities, and total discomfiture in the open debates that were held at Agra and other places. The Shaikh was highly pleased and, embraced the Maulana warmly. He gave permission
to the Maulana to teach in the Masjid Haram and hisname entered in the official roll of teachers. VISIT TO CONSTANTINOPLE Meanwhile Sultan Abdul Aziz sent afirman (order) to the Governor of Mecca asking him to compile from the reports of the Ulema and other well-informed pilgrims from India, a detailed account of the debate with Fonder and of the Indian revolution of 1857, and send it to him. The Governor mentioned this to Shaikh Syed Ahmad Dahlan. He told him that the very scholar, who had debated the issues with Fonder, was in Mecca. The Shaikh took the Maulana to meet the Governor the following day. The Governor sent a report to the Sultan who desired that the Maulana should come to Constantinople. He left for the Ottoman capital as a royal guest in ]280 A. H. (1864 C.E.) The Sultan was anxious to know the details of the events in India, because Fonder had come to C onstantinople. He had left India after the revolution of 1857 and spent some time in Swizerland and Germany. The Church Mission Society of London then assigned him to Turkey. He had a mischievous nature and, soon after his arrival at Constantinople, he had made it public that, the Christians had won in the debate held in India, that Islam had been vanquished and the Ulema had failed to meet the Christian’s argument and criticism. He had also announced that large. numbers of Indian Muslims were embracing Christianity. This news had upset the Sultan and the Turkish people. When Fonder learnt that his old adversary Maulana Rahmatullah was coming to Constantinople he went in hiding, and disappeared from the scene. The Sultan con
vened a meeting of the Ulerna, high officials and other scholars to hear the account of the events in India from the Maulana. The Sliltan’s Government, in order to check the Christian’s malicious activities, had the missionaries arrested and deported. Their books and other missionary literature were banned. The Sultan received the Maulana in audience often after the isha prayers. Khairuddin Pasha Tunisi, the grand wazir, and the Shaikhul Islam also participated in these gatherings. The Sultan in appreciation of his notable service to the cause of Islam, awarded him the Majeedi Medal II Class and, granted him a handsome monthly allowance. It was in deference to the wishes of the Sultan and of Khairuddin Pasha that the Maulana began work on his famous book Izharul Haq in Rajab 1280 A.H. He completed it six months later, and presented it to the Sultan. The Pasha said to the Maulana that he had written the book at the instance of the Sultan and it would, therefore, have been proper, if the Sultan’s name instead of the Shaikhul Ulema’s had been mentioned in the introduction. The Maulana replied that this was a service purely in the cause of Islam, and, therefore, no trace of mundane purpose or wordly gain should taint it. Besides it was the Shaikhul Ulema at Mecca who had first asked him to write the book and he had already begun preliminary work on it there. The Maulana also told him, but for the Shaikh he would pot have had access to the Governor of Mecca and through him to the Sultan, to be able to render this service. The reasons given by the Maulana were highly appreciated.
During his stay at Constantinople he had frequent occasions to meet the Ulema and other men of learning, and discuss several religious matters. He perceived that Western thought and mores had begun to penetrate this bastion of the Islamic faith also. He realised its probable repercussions and, in order to affirm belief in prophethood and revelation, resurrection and life after death, and other tenets of Islamic faith, he wrote a treatise which dealt with these subjects on a rational and logical basis. It was written in 1281 A. H. and printed at Constantinople by order of Khairuddin Pasha, the grand wazir. This treatise was also printed as an appendix to some of the editions of the lzharul Haq published at Cairo. The Maulana, on his return from Constantinople, settled down as a teacher in the Masjid-e-Haram at Mecca. First he toolcup the teaching of logic and philosophy and later introduced astronomy, which had not been taught in the Hejaz. Etymology was not taught as a separate subject but as an adjunct of the science of syntas. He introduced the study of etymology as a separate subject. I’ The Maulana gave careful thought to the problems of education, the method in force and the needs of the people. He came to the conclusion that an institution for religious education should be set up which would be worthy of Mecca, the centre of Islam. His plan envisaged that the teaching staff should be drawn from the Ulema belonging to different countries, and the syllabus should also be comprehensive enough to meet the spiritual and wordly needs of the students. The Ottoman government had been spending large sums of money on education and other development pro
grommes in Mecca. But the effort was not properly organized and the results were not satisfactory. He thought that the following factors were responsible for the static condition of education :~ (a) There was no prescribed syllabus for various stages of education. (b) The Ulema did not have an organized method of teaching. There was no conception of primary or intermediate classes etc. (c) It was the teacher’s practice to read out a passage from the book and thereafter explain its meaning. The students treated it as if it were a sermon. Since they did not exercise their minds, their intellectual development was not satisfactory. Discussion on any point by the students was frowned upon. (d) As there was no curriculum, students who spent years learning lafseer (exegesis) hadith and jiqh (law) did not become accomplished scholars. It took seven years for instance to teach Tafseer Jalalayn, which the students in India studied in one year. There was neither an iterest in the study of other subjects nor adequate teaching capacity. (e) There was no arrangement for the education of the, children of the immigrants from other Muslim countries. Because of this neglect they were living in degrading conditions. (f) Mecca attracted a large number of students from all over the world but there was neit.her an orga
nized course of study nor adequate arrangements for their board and lodging. The Maulana was the first person who made an assessment of the needs and prepared a plan for an institution, which would be an humble successor of the glorious madrasa of Abdullah bin Abbas, Allah be pleased with them. He also planned to establish an industrial institution for imparting training in handicrafts and industry to the children of the immigrants and of the local people in order to equip them to earn their livelihood. His unceasing efforts bore fruit. A large number of immigrants and pilgrims from the Indo-Pakistan sub-continent gave handsome donations. The first appeal for funds, was made on the 1st Ramadhan 1290 A. H. The following is the text of the appeal ; “Praise b~ to Allah and salat and salam be on the Holy Prophet. Thanks to the generosity of several Muslims of India, some work for the public good has been done in the two Harams (Mecca and Medina), for instance lodging houses for pilgrims and watering places for the pnblic have been built. But as yet a ma Jrasa has not been established through. their efforts, though teaching has a prime position among good works. It is therefore requested that those who wish to associate themselves with this good work, may kindly register their names together with the amount of th.eir monthly contributions. Even’if the amount is small it would be welcome. The rules for the management of the
institution will be framed after due deliberations by a body, whose members will be appointed after consultation. ” It was decided to set up the madrasa in a portion of the residential house of a prominent immigrant, Nawab Faiz Ahmad Khan of Aligarh (India). It was also decided that the immigrants from the Indo-Pakistan sub-continent should form the mainstay of this institution. Saulat-un Nisa Begum The H aj season of the year 1290 A. H. proved to be a blessing for the madrasa. Saulat-un-Nisa Begam a widow from Calcutta, came as a pilgrim to Mecca with her daugter and son-in-law. She was a generous woman of faith and determination. It is the wish of many good people of comfortable means, who come to the Hejaz, to do some work for the public good in the two Harams, so that Allah may be pleased to count it towards their merit. The Begam had come with a similar intention. She wanted to build a lodging house for the pilgrims. Her son-in-law who often attended the Maulana’s lectures in the Haram, one day sought his advice about the Begam’s project. The Maulana told him that there was no dearth of lodging houses in Mecca Mukarramah and Medina Munawwarah, but there was a crying need for a good madrasa, as there was no regular institution in Mecca Mukarramah. The Begam agreed with his advice. The next day she saw the Maulana, and asked him to purchase land for the madrasa. A plot of land was purchased in Mohallah Khandreesah, and construction work was started soon thereafter. The Begam l!sed to visit the site often to see the progress of the work. She was grateful
Allah for having granted her the opportunity for doing this public service. A memorandum recorded by the Maulana in the first register of the Madrasa reads: . “Praise be to A.11ah and salat and salam be on the Holy prophet. The Madrasa Hindyah was established at Mecca Mukarramah (May Al1ah enhance its dignity) with the help of the Indian Muslims in Ramadhan 1290 A.H. But certain difficulties caused frequent dislocations during the last four months of that year. We, therefore, do not count those four months and reckon the establishment of the Madrasa as from the month of Muharram 1291 A. H. All matters concerning it are recorded with reference to this year. 0 Allah, grant that this task may be accomplished successfully. May His grace and favours be on us. “The school and the students were shifted to Madrasa Saulatiya Jadidah on Wednesday the 12th Sha’ban 1291 A. H. Nawab Mahmood Ali Khan of Chhatari has offered to contribute Rupees one hundred per month effective 1st Sha’ban 1292 A. H.” . It was due to the Begam’s munificence that the Madrasa was established in its own buildings. The Maulana in recognition of her generous services to the cause of Islamic education named the madrasa after her as Madrasa Saulatiya. He thought that this would be a fitting and lasting tribute to the memory of this noble lady in the capital of Islam.
Founders of new projects normally face several problems but they are of the usual type. The Maulana however, came up against two unusual problems which had never occurred to him. lil’ I “1 I”U’ The British Consul at Jeddah was worried by the Maulana’s activities. The Maulana’s role in the events that had occurred in India in 1857 C. E. was wen known. The British were worried by the thought that he could use the Madrasa as a cover for his anti-British activities. The Consul therefore made every effort he could, to hinder the project. The second problem was, that the Turkish settlers in the Hejaz, who knew that the Madrasa was being set up with the help of Indian Muslims, feared that this might lead to political intervention in the Hejaz by a foreign power. The Turkish fears were based on their unhappy experience with the Christian missions and their parapherna1ia of charitable and social works in their own country. The Maulana, however, faced these new difficulties boldly and surmounted them. His sincerity and perseverance in the service of the Muslims, dispelled the fears of the local Turks, who were won over to his cause.
THE OBJECTIVES: When the Maulana established this institution he had three main objectives before him:
(a) to provide educational facilities with board and . lodging for students from all over the world, who come to Mecca with the desire to pursue their studies in the capital of Islam.
(b) to provide educational and! vocational training facilities for the children of the immigrants so that they are integrated with the community and become useful members of the society.
(c) to remove the impression that’the Indian Muslims did not, recite the Quran correctly, since Arabic become useful was not’ their mother tongue.
THE POLICY OF THE MADRASA: He laid down certain principles of behaviour for the students and teachers of the Madrasa and insisted on a strict observance of the following: (a) th~y should keep aloof from aU political activities. (b) they should abstain from a discussion of those matterswhich were controversial or were likely to raise controversies~ (c) they should eschew their rivalries and differences; and should not allow the Madrasa community to be divided into rival groups. The observance of those principles over the years enhanced the reputation and prestige of the Madrasa. Maulana Mohammad AIi, the great Indian Muslim leader and founder of Darul Uloom Nadwatul Ulerna, referred to these special features of the M adrasa in one of his writings fifty years ago: “It is the good fortune of the’ M adrasa, which is in fact a fruit ofthe late Maulana’slloble intentions; that, teachers and students have not become involved in the critical events of the time. Their ideas are sound.
They do not take up extreme positions. They niether underrate an issue nor do they give it undue emphasis. They do not have a disputant nature; and the thought of branding one Muslim or the other as a heretic or sinner is far from their minds. Praise be to Allah. It is indeed Allah’s great favour if one is able to avoid dissensions of this sort during these critical times. The Madrasa is indeed a blessed institution.” SECOND VISIT TO CONSTANTINOPLE: Usman Nuri Pasha was appointed governor. of the Hejaz in 1299 A. H. He was a soldier and was not familiar with the niceties of administration. Some selfish and mischievous people were successful in creating misunderstandings between the Governor and the Maufana. The Pasha came to regard the Madrasa as an alien movement and he became one of its chief opponents. The report of their differences reached the Sultan., The cases of both parties were presented bef~re him. It was against the exp,ectations of the Pasha that the Maulana was summoned to the capital. His diary contains a detailed account of this visit. III It is recorded that he left Mecca on 20th Rabiul A wwal, 1301 A. H. and sailed from Jeddah for a Port Said. From Elexandria he took another boat for Constantinople. He arrived there on the 5th Jamadiul Oola and was graciously received by the Sultan’s personal staff, and taken to the royal guest house. Several dignitaries and U/ema visited him every day. The Sultan received him warmly, showered him with gifts and favours and conferred on, 4im the honour of Nishan-e-Majeedi and the rank of Paya-e-Haramain Sharifain (Pillar of the two noble Harams). The Shaikhul
Islam also met him warmly and conferred on him the Sanad-e-Raoos (certificate declaring him as a dean). The Sultan offered financial aid for the Madrasa but the Maulana declined this gracious offer on the plea that it would deprive the Muslims of the Indian sub-continent, who were supporting the institution, of the opportunity to make provision for themselves in the Hereafter. One day the Maulana’s nephew, . Maulana Badrul Islam accompanied him to the palace. The Sultan said that he would like Maulana Badrul Islam to stay with him and take charge of Hamidia library at Yildiz Palace. Maulana Badr continued to serve the Sultan loyally and was with him at the time he was deposed. ./ It was a great day for the Madrasa when the Maulana came back to Mecca. Governor Usman Noori Pasha was prominent among those who had turned out to welcome him. The Governor embraced him warmly and asked that the earlier misunderstanding be forgotten. ZUBAIDA CANAL: ~ Zubaida, the wife of the Abbasid Khalifa Haroon Rashid had built a canal which supplied water to the parched land of Mecca. It had become dilapidated- and needed extensive repairs. Shortage of water had become a chronic problem and a cause of great inconvenience to the people. It was through the Maulana’s efforts that a committee was formed with the assistance of Seth Abdul Wahid, an Indian, for renovation. of the canal. The concurrence of the Government was obtained’ for this project and a committee was set up for raising funds. The Seth,
who made a very. handsome contribution, was appointed as the treasurer. The Maulana selected his eminent pupil, MaulanaShaikh Abdur Rahman Siraj, the Shaikhul Ulema. or Mecca, as its president, while he himself acted as its, vice president. Praise be to Allah, this ambitious project was successfully completed through. their efforts. THIRD VISIr TO CONSTANTINOPLE: The Maulana after his return to Mecca from Constantinople had maintained regular correspondence with Khairuddin Pasha, Ali Bey, the Shaikhul Islam and other high officials. On occasions he also corresponded directly with the Sultan, regarding affairs of great moment. But old age had come upon him and his eyesight failed him in 1303 A. H. He was unable to follow his regular pursuits. When the report of his condition reached the Sultan; he invited him to come to Constantinople. The Maulana found it hard. to undertake a journey at that time, but in deference to the Sultan’s wishes he left Mecca in Shaban 1304 A.H. and reached Constantinople on the 2nd Ramadhan. Molvi Abdullah, his pupil and one of his companions on this journey, acted as. his secretary. According to his account. the Sultan accorded hiin a gracious welcome and told him that he had. arraang~ ed’ for a board of doctors to examine him the next day. The doctors examined his eyes. and said that he would have’ to undergo surgery for cataract, and God willing, he would be cured. They, however, decided to defer surgery by two months as the eyes were not until then ripe for it. The Sultan had also expressed the wish that the Maulana should,live with him in the. Capital. The Maulana
made an ap0lo-gy to the Sultan and said : “Having left my home and my kith and kin I have sought Al1ah’>s shelter and cast myself at His doorsteps. If I spend my remaining days here and die at the doorsteps of the Sultan ‘how shaUl face my Lord on the Day of Judgement.” The Maulana found his stay at Constantinople this time wearisome and a burden on his spirit. He wanted to spend every minute of the time that was left to him, in the Haram. Patients in those days had not developed confidence in surgery. The Maulana had some fears and did not consent to the proposed treatment. The Sultan wished to be kind to him and did not insist. The Maulana, by the leave of the Sultan, returned ‘to Mecca in the month of Dhiqada. The next year however, he under went surgery at Mecca, but it proved unsuccessful, and he lost his sight totally. The Maulana did not have any children. He wanted that the affairs of the Madarasa should repose in ‘good hands when he was gone. He had therefore sent for Maulana Mohammad Saeed, the grandson of his elder brother, Maulana Hakim AU Akbar, from India, Maulana Saeed, then a child, bad been sent to a mission school in Ambala (India) by his fahter.Thisnews upset the Maulana, and he wrote a firm letter to his father asking that the child should come to live with him at Mecca. ‘MaulanaSaeed was twelve years old when he came to Mecca and he was brought up and educated by the Maulana. Hazrat Haji Imdad~\1ahand the Maulana both, took great pains in his education. They wanted him to ‘serve the centre .of l’slam .and the Madrasa.
Maulana Saeed in his time more than fulfilled their expectations.
THE BUILDINGS OF THE MADRASA : Ii II I The Madrasa. on the holy land of Baram is the major good work of his lifetime, a work of lasting merit. It is a distinctive feature of this Madrasa that it has its own complex of buildings which house all the departments of the institution. Most of the buildings which had t:>een planned for specific purposes, were completed during his lifetime. .
(a) The first building was constructed with the funds donated by the late Saulat-un-Nisa Begam of Calcutta. The Madrasa, and this building was named after this benefactress. It contains five halls, three rooms a large courtyard and other adj uncts.
(b) Darul Iqama (hostel) was the second building which was constructed in 1293 A.H. It was through the generosity of Mr. Wajid Husain of Patna (India). that this hostel was built. It can accommodate fifty students. The Madrasa provides free board and lodging to the students.
(c) Masjid-e-Madrasa. The Mosque is the sole example of Moghal architecture in Holy .land. It also has an historical significance. There was a building in the courtyard of the Haram, near the Zamzams spring, which housed the Royal Library. It was an obstruction for the pilgrims, parti’culady a.t prayer time. It was demolished
at the suggestion of Us man Nuri Pasha, Governor of the Hejaz. It was proposed that the material of the demolished building be auctioned. The Maulana was upset by this proposal, as this material, having been a part of the Haram, .was hallowed. There was no knowing where and for what purpose it might be used by the purchaser. He could not reconcile himself to this situation, which he regarded as sacrilegous. The Maulana requested the Governor to release the material to him for the purpose of buiiding a mosque. with it. The Governor agreed and the material was purchased for Rupees one thousand five hundred. The construction of the mosque with this material was started in 1301 A.H. The local masons did not know the technique of “uilding domes. Luckily a few masons from Panipat happened’ to be in the Hejaz that Haj season. They offered to build the domes. The mosque was eompleted in. 1304 A.H. An immigrant from Herat (Afghanistan) who was a scholar and calligraphist, and who was deeply attached to the Maulana, composed an historical epigram and wrote it in his own hand on the facade of the arch.
This mosque is a beautiful sight, The like of which the eyes will not see. ‘Khana-e-Rahmat’*. tens its year Say rahmat-ullah+ + upon its builder.
* Khana-e-Rahmat means house of mercy. It also anudes. to Maulana’s name Rahmatullah. The dat~ is calculated by adding the numerical value of each letter of the words” Kbana-e;Rahmat.” ++ Rahmatullah means Allah’s mercy. There is again an aIlusion here.
The Maulana’s lecturesJU ‘the Masjid..e-Haram attracted a large number of people. The names of some of the eminent Ulema who were his pupils in Madrasa Masjid-eHaram and in the Mardras Saulatiya is given in Appendix ‘A’. The Maulana also started classes in the art of the recitation df the Holy Quran. It had been neglected in the past. The art was revived in Pakistan and India by his pupils who established several institutions in different places. The Madrasa has continued to serve zealously the cause of Islam and religious Education. A list of some of the old students of this institution who achieved prominence in life is given in Appendix ‘B’. The Maulanapassed away on 22nd Ramadhan 1308 A.H. He was 75 years of age. His services were meritorious and his career honourable. This noble Mujahid had often wished to. die and be buried in the holy land. Allah granted his wish and he was buried in the Jannatul Ma’/at graveyard at Mecca near the tombs of Khadijatul Kubra, Allah ,be ,pleased with her, and other saints and ‘shaheeds. May Allah’s rahmat be on Rahmat-ullah.