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404. Kaifi Azmi

Kaifi Azmi (Hindi: कैफ़ी आज़मी; Urdu: کیفی اعظمی; January 14, 1919 – May 10, 2002) was an Indian Urdu poet. He is considered to be one of the greatest Urdu poets of 20th century. Together with Pirzada Qasim, Jon Elia and others he participated in the most memorable mushairas of the twentieth century.

Early life

Azmi was born in the village of Mizwaa(n) in Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh, India.


Azmi was married to Shaukhat Azmi. They have a daughter, Shabana Azmi (An Indian Actress of film, television and theatre) and a son, Baba Azmi (Indian Cinematographer).



At age eleven, Azmi wrote his first ghazal Itna To Zindagi Mein Kisi Ki Khalal Pade and somehow managed to get himself invited to a mushaira and over there, he recited a ghazal, rather a couplet of the ghazal which was very much appreciated by the president of the mushaira, Mani Jaisi, but most of the people, including his father, thought he recited his elder brother's ghazal. When his elder brother denied it, his father and his clerk decided to test his poetic talent. They gave him one of the lines of a couplet and asked him to write a ghazal in the same meter and rhyme. Azmi accepted the challenge and completed a ghazal. This particular ghazal was to become a rage in undivided India and it was immortalized as it was sung by legendary ghazal singer, Begum Akhtar.
Azmi abandoned his studies of Persian and Urdu during the Quit India agitations in 1942 and shortly thereafter became a full-time Marxist when he accepted membership of the Communist Party of India in 1943.
During this period, the leading progressive writers of Lucknow noticed him. They were very impressed by his leadership qualities. They also saw in him a budding poet and extended all possible encouragement towards him. Consequently, Azmi started to win great acclaim as a poet and became a member of Progressive Writers' Movement of India.
At the age of twenty-four, he started activities in the textile mill areas of Kanpur. As a full-time worker, he left his life of comfort, though he was the son of a zamindar. He was asked to shift his base to Bombay, work amongst the workers and start party work with a lot of zeal and enthusiasm and at the same time would attend mushairas in different parts of India. In Bombay, he joined Ali Sardar Jafri in writing for the party’s paper, Qaumi Jung.
In 1947, he visited Hyderabad to participate in a mushaira. There he met, fell in love with and married a woman named Shaukat Azmi. She later became a renowned actress in theatre and films. They had two children together, Shabana Azmi (b. 1950), a renowned actress of Indian cinema and Baba Azmi, a noted cameraman.


Like most of the Urdu poets, Azmi began as a ghazal writer, cramming his poetry with the repeated themes of love and romance in a style that was replete with clichés and metaphors. However, his association with the Progressive Writers' Movement and Communist Party made him embark on the path of socially conscious poetry.
In his poetry, he highlights the exploitation of the subaltern masses and through them he conveys a message of the creation of a just social order by dismantling the existing one. Yet, his poetry cannot be called plain propaganda. It has its own merits; intensity of emotions, in particular, and the spirit of sympathy and compassion towards the disadvantaged section of society, are the hallmark of his poetry. His poems are also notable for their rich imagery and in this respect, his contribution to Urdu poetry can hardly be overstated.
Azmi's first collection of poems, Jhankar was published in 1943. His important works including anthologies of poetry, were Aakhir-e-Shab, Sarmaya, Awaara Sajde, Kaifiyaat, Nai Gulistan, an anthology of articles he wrote for Urdu Blitz, Meri Awaaz Suno, a selection of his film lyrics, and the script of Heer Ranjha in Devanagari.
His best known poems are Aurat, Makaan,Daaera,Saanp, and Bahuroopni.


Azmi's work in films includes working as a lyricist, writer and actor. Azmi wrote his first lyrics for the film Buzdil, directed by Shaheed Latif, in 1952. His early work as a writer was mainly for Nanubhai Vakil's films like Yahudi Ki Beti (1956), Parvin (1957), Miss Punjab Mail (1958) and Id Ka Chand (1958).
While directors like Khwaja Ahmad Abbas and Bimal Roy strove to create the “New Cinema”, writers like Sahir Ludhianvi, Jan Nisar Akhtar, Majrooh Sultanpuri, and Kaifi changed the tenor and vocabulary of the Hindi film song, creating a fresh new wave in Hindi film lyrics that lasted many years. 
His greatest feat as a writer was Chetan Anand's Heer Raanjha (1970) wherein the entire dialogue of the film was in verse. It was a tremendous achievement and one of the greatest feats of Hindi film writing. Azmi also won great critical accolades for the script, dialogues and lyrics of M.S. Sathyu's Garam Hawa (1973), based on a story by Ismat Chughtai. Azmi also wrote the dialogues for Shyam Benegal's Manthan (1976) and Sathyu's Kanneshwara Rama (1977).
As a lyricist and songwriter, though he wrote for numerous films, he will always be remembered for Guru Dutt's Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959) and Chetan Anand's Haqeeqat (1964), India's greatest war film. Some notables films for which he wrote lyrics include Kohra (1964), Anupama (1966), Uski Kahani (1966), Saat Hindustani (1969), Shola Aur Shabnam, Parwana (1971), Bawarchi (1972), Pakeezah (1972), Hanste Zakhm (1973), Arth (1982) and Razia Sultan (1983). He also played a memorable role of Naseem's grandfather in Naseem (1995).
Azmi died on May 10, 2002 at around the age of eighty three. He was survived by his wife, daughter and son.
His autobiography is included in a collection of his works, Aaj Ke Prashid Shayar: Kaifi Azmi.

 In media

Azmi was the subject of a documentary film called Kaifi Azmi (1979), directed by Raman Kumar. In 1997, he recited his own poems for Kaifiyaat, an audio book on his collected works.
Kaifi Aur Mein, a play based on his life, his works and the memoir of his wife, Shaukat Azmi – Yadon Ki Rahguzar (Down Memory Lane), was written and performed by Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi, and performed in India as well as abroad in 2006. Another play, directed by Rani Balbir, Waqt Ne Kiya Kya Hasin Sitam, based Kaifi Azmi’s life and writings was staged in 2005, and received rave reviews.


He was the recipient of Padma Shri one of the Indian Government's highest civilian awards. Besides he was awarded the Uttar Pradesh Urdu Academy Award and the Sahitya Akademi Award for Urdu for his collection Awaara Sajde, Special Award of Maharashtra Urdu Academy, Soviet Land Nehru Award, Lotus Award from the Afro-Asian Writers' Association, and President’s Award for national integration. In 1998, Government of Maharashtra conferred the Jyaneshwara Award on him. He was also honoured with the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Fellowship for lifetime achievement.
In 2000, he was conferred the first Millennium Award by the Government of Delhi and the Delhi Urdu Academy. He has also been honoured with a doctorate from Vishva Bharati University, Santiniketan. 

 Sahitya Akademi Award

  • 1975: Sahitya Akademi Award: Awara Sajde 
  • 2002: Sahitya Akademi Fellowship (Immortals of Literature)

National Film Awards

  • 1970: National Film Award for Best Lyrics: Saat Hindustani

 Filmfare Awards

  • 1975:Filmfare Best Dialogue Award: Garam Hawa
  • 1975:Filmfare Best Screenplay Award: Garam Hawa (with Shama Zaidi)
  • 1975:Filmfare Best Story Award: Garam Hawa (with Ismat Chughtai)

 Famous verses

  • Aaj ki raat bahut garam hawa chalti hai
Aaj ki raat na neend aayegi
Hum sub uthen, main bhi uthun, tum bhi utho
Koi khidki isi deewar mein khul jayegi
- Makaan

  • Tu jo bejaan khilonon se behel jaati hai
Tapti saanson ki haraarat se pighal jaati hai
Paaon jis raah mein rakhti hai fisal jaati hai
Banke seemaab har ik zarf mein dhal jaati hai
Zist ke aahni saanche main dhalna hai tujhe
uth meri jaan mere saath hi chalna hai tujhe…
Aurat (Woman)

  • Waqt Ni Kiya Kya Haseen Sitam
Tum rahe na tum,Hum Rahe na Hum.
- Film Kaagaz Ke Phool 1959
  • Tum Itna Jo Muskura Rahe Ho
Kya gum hai jisko Chupa rahe Ho.
- Film Arth (1982)
 zindagi bhar mujhe nafrat si rahi asko se
Meri khwabo ko tum asko me dubote keu ho?
Jo meri tarha jia karte hai kab marte hai
Thak gaya hu mujhe solene do rote keu ho?
Soke bhi jagte rahte hai janbaz suno.

keu sazai ho chandan ke chita mere liey
mai koi jism nahi jalao ge mujhe
rakh ke saath bikhar jaunga dunia me
thokar jahan khaogey waha paogey mujhe

 Select bibliography

  • Kaifi Azmi- Fan Aur Shaqsiyat (Urdu), Mayar Publications, 2004.
  • Kaifiyaat:Kulliyat-e-Kaifi Azmi(URDU)), Educational Publishing House,2003.ISBN 8187667788.
  • Zehr-e-Ishq (Hindi), Vani Prakashan, 2003.
  • Heer Ranjha (Hindi), Vani Prakshan 2003.
  • Steel Man was Here, Penguin, 2002.
  • Kaifi Azmi- Selected Poems and Life Sketch, Rajpal Publishers, 2002. ISBN 81-7028-395-7.
  • Aaj Ke Prashid Shayar: Kaifi Azmi-Chuni Hui Shayari (Hindi), Rajpal & Sons, 2002.ISBN 8170285429.
  • Meri Awaz Suno (Hindi), Rajkamal Prakashan, 2002.
  • Nai Gulistan Vol.1 (Hindi), Rajkamal Prakashan, 2001.
  • Nai Gulistan Vol.2 (Hindi), Rajkamal Prakashan, 2001.
  • Doosra Banwas (Hindi), Diamond Pocket Books Pvt. Ltd. ISBN 81-288-0982-2.
  • Awara Sajde (Hindi), Lokbharti Prakashan, 1995.
  • Sarmaya (Urdu), Mayar Publications, 1994.

 Articles on Kaifi Azmi

  • Kaifi Azmi: Symbol of resistance – Ranjit Hoskote.The Hindu, Sunday, 19 May 2002.
  • Kaifi Azmi: A poet and a gentleman. The Times Of India, 10 May 2002.
  • Kaifi Azmi: the last comrade-poet – Tarique Omum. The Milli Gazette. 
Source : Wikipedia

403. Dr. Omar Khalidi

Dr. Omar Khalidi (1953 – 29 November 2010) was born in Hyderabad, India and was an eminent Muslim scholar, a staff member of MIT in the USA and an author. He was educated in India, the United Kingdom, and the United States. He is referred to as the "Chronicler of Hyderabad and as a champion of minority rights". He is considered an international relations builder and his visits to various countries, sponsored by the US State Department, were a part of this effort.
The main subjects of his books are minority rights, history, architecture, economics, demography, politics, Urdu education, military history, library science, cataloging ethnic groups and nationalism. His incisive writings on minority rights inspired the Sachar Committee to seek a community wise census of the Indian armed forces. He had also authored several books and articles on Islam in America and mosque architecture.
His two books, Khaki and Ethnic Violence in India: Army, Police, and Paramilitary Forces During Communal Riots (2003) and Muslims in Indian Economy (2006), had focused on the institutional discrimination against Muslims in India, creating furor in the Indian Parliament in 2006. L.K. Advani had verbally attacked him for allegedly tarnishing the secular credentials of the Indian army and personally held him responsible for the Sachar Committee’s request for a community wide census in India.

Early life and Education

Khalidi was born in 1953 in Hyderabad, India. His father Abu Nasr Muhammad Khalidi was a specialist in Islamic studies and Urdu literature at Osmania University. Omar received his primary education at Madrassa-e-Aaaliyah High School in Hyderabad. He completed his BA in history at Wichita State University in 1980. In 1991 he received a Master of Liberal Arts degree from Harvard University and his PhD from the University of Wales Lampeter, UK in (1994).


In the 1980s he worked at the King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and from there he moved back to the USA and became a staff member of MIT in Boston. Later in 1983, he joined the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture at MIT and worked there as a librarian until his death in a train accident in the same city.


His first scholarly work was The British Residents at the Court of the Nizams of Hyderabad published in 1981. Since then he wrote and edited more than 25 books. The most famous book he edited is Hyderabad: After the Fall published in 1990. The book documents the fall of the princely state of Hyderabad and its negative impact on the Muslim community. He researched excerpts from the Pandit Sunderlal Commission Report which for the first time offered a glimpse into what really happened in 1948 as Hyderabad was amalgamated into the Indian union.

 Media contribution

Khalidi served as a regional Vice-President of American Federation of Muslims of Indian Origin, and was an active participant in the various activities of all other Indian Muslim organizations in the USA and Canada. His articles were published regularly in the MetroWest Daily News and he was an active columnist for various other journals, writing for the Economic and Political Weekly, The Outlook, India Abroad, Two Circles and other print and internet media.


Below are the collection of some of his books.
Published Year Book Name Publisher
1981 The British Residents at the Court of the Nizams of Hyderabad Hyderabad Historical Society.
1985 Hyderabad State Under the Nizams, 1724-1948: A Bibliography of Monographic and Periodical Literature Hyderabad Historical Society.
1987 Deccan Under the Sultans, 1296-1724: A Bibliography of Monographic and Periodical Literature Hyderabad Historical Society.
1988 African Diaspora in India: The Case of the Habashis of Deccan Hamdard National Foundation.
1988 Hyderabad After the Fall Hyderabad Historical Society.
1990 Indian Muslims in North America South Asia Press.
1991 Factors in Muslim Electability to Lok Sabha Harvard University Press.
1991 Memoirs of Cyril Jones: People, Society, and Railways in Hyderabad Manohar Publications.
1992 Shama-e-Faroozan: Chand Ilmi Aur Adabi Shakhsiyatoon Ke Halaat-e-Zindagi Aur Karname Azmi and Sons.
1994 Memoirs of Sidney Cotton South Asia Press.
1995 Islamic Literature in the Deccani Languages: Kannada, Marathi, & Telugu Hyderabad Historical Society.
1998 Suqut-e-Hyderabad: Chashm Deed Aur Muasir Tahreeron Par Mushtamil Manzar Aur Pesh Manzar (Edited with Dr. Muinuddin Aqil) All India Majlis Tameer-e-Millat.
1999 Romance of the Golconda Diamonds Mapin Publishing.
1999 Approaches to Mosque Design in North America MIT.
1999 The Architecture and Campus Planning of Osmania University MIT.
1999 American Architecture of Islamic Inspiration MIT.
2003 A Guide to Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Urdu Manuscript Libraries in India Middle East Librarians Association.
2003 Khaki and Ethnic Violence in India: Army, Police, and Paramilitary Forces During Communal Riots Three Essays Press.
2004 Between Muslim Nationalists and Nationalist Muslims: Maududi’s Thoughts on Indian Muslims Institute of Objective Studies.
2004 The British Residency in Hyderabad: An Outpost of the Raj (1779-1948) British Association for Cemeteries in South Asia.
2006 An Indian Passage to Europe: The Travels of Fath Nawaz Jang Oxford University Press.
2006 Muslims in the Deccan: A Historical Survey Global Media Publications.
2006 Muslims in Indian Economy Three Essays Collective.
2006 Khaki and Ethnic Violence in India-2 Three Essays Collective.
2006 A Guide to Architecture in Hyderabad, Deccan, India Three Essays Collective.


Omar Khalidi died on 29 November 2010, in a train accident at Kendall Square, MBTA station in Cambridge-Boston. His family published a statement in the Arab News on 30 November 2010: Omar Khalidi drove in his car to the MIT campus and was probably trying to catch a train to buy medicine at the next station. He was diabetic, and it seems his sugar level had reached abnormal levels and he was hit by a train in Boston, United States His funeral prayers were held at the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center in Roxbury.
He left his wife Nigar Khalidi and his daughter Aliya.

Source : Wikipedia

402. Muhammad Ilyas Kandhalvi

Muhammad Ilyas Kandhalvi was born in 1885 in a small town in the United Province of British India in a family of religious scholars. As a response to degradation in practice of Islamic principles and values among the common Muslim folk and efforts by organizations such as Arya Samaj to convert poorer sections of Muslims to Hinduism (see Shuddi Movement), Ilyas al-Kandhlawi revived the Tabligh Jamaat effort in the 1920s. This movement focuses on preaching fundamental Islamic values to common Muslims and works on inculcating ritual prayer, fasting and other fundamental acts of worship in them. All the members work as volunteers and encourage each other on concern for Muslim community and mankind in general to return to worship and obedience of their Creator (God). Tabligh Jamaat maintains a non-affiliating stature in matters of politics and fiqh (jurisprudence) so as to eschew the controversies that would otherwise accompany such affiliations and today has a presence in over 150 countries in the world. He was succeeded by Muhammad Yusuf Kandhalawi as Ameer of Tabligh Jamaat

Early life and education

Muhammad Ilyas was born in 1885 in his maternal grandmother's house in the town of Kandhla in Uttar Pradesh, India. His childhood was spent partly in the city of Nizamuddin, where his father, Muhammad Ismail, was an imam and religious teacher, and partly with with his maternal grandmother's family in Kandhla. Like all other children in the family, Ilyas began his education in the maktab. There he memorized one and a quarter ajza' of the Qur'an. He completed memorizing the Qur'an under his father. The learning of the Qur'an was so common in the family that in the one-and-a-half rows of worshippers in the family mosque, there was not a single non-Hafiz except the muezzin. Thereafter, he studied the elementary books of Arabic and Persian language mostly under his father. Some of his studies were under Muhammad Abrar, a doctor in Nizamuddin.
In his youth, Ilyas was known for his piety. Ilyas's mother, Bi Safiya, used to say to him, "Ilyas, I feel the aroma of the holy Companions in you," referring to the companions of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad. Sometimes, placing her hand on his back, she would say, "How is it that I see figures resembling the holy companions moving along with you?" The Islamic scholar Mehmud Hasan remarked, "when I see Mohammad Ilyas, I am reminded of the holy companions." Eagerness and enthusiasm for faith were ingrained in Ilyas's nature. 
At Nizamuddin, Ilyas's further education was being neglected due to the over-fondness and busy schedule of his father and Ilyas's own excessive occupation with prayers. Therefore, Ilyas's brother, Muhammad Yahya, requested that his father allow Ilyas to come with him to Gangoh, where Yahya lived with and studied under Rashid Ahmad Gangohi. Their father agreed, and Ilyas came to Gangoh in 1896 or early 1897, where Mohammad Yahya began to teach him regularly.
At the time Gangoh was a base of many Islamic scholars and Sufis. Muhammad Yahya wanted Ilyas to benefit from this spiritual environment. Often, when scholars that were former students or disciples of Gangohi would visit Gangoh, Muhammad Yahya would stop his lessons and instruct Ilyas to sit and listen to their conversation instead.
In Gangoh, Ilyas benefited from the company of Rashid Ahmad Gangohi as well. He requested to give bay`ah (an oath of allegiance to a Sufi teacher) at the hand of Gangohi. Although Gangohi did not usually take bay`ah from children and students, he made an exception due to the exceptional merit of Ilyas. Ilyas developed a strong attachment to Gangohi, who had great affection for Ilyas as well.
At one point, Ilyas's studies had to be suspended due to severe illness. He was anxious to begin studying again, but, due to his health, was not allowed. Eventually he succeeded in returning to his studies.
In 1905, the death of Rashid Ahmad Gangohi occurred, when Ilyas was 20. Ilyas was at Gangohi's bedside at the time, reciting Surat Ya Sin. The death of Gangohi greatly affected him. He said, "Two shocks have been most painful to me. One was of the death of my father, and the other, of the death of Maulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi."
After, the death of Gangohi, Ilyas generally remained silent and spent most of his time in meditation. Muhammad Zakariya Kandhalvi said, "We studied elementary Persian from him those days. His practice, then, was that he sat cross legged, and in utter silence, on a coarse mat behind the tomb of Shah Abdul Quddus. We presented ourselves for the lesson, opened the book, and placed it before him, indicating with the finger where we were to begin from on that day. We would read aloud and translate the Persian verses. When we made a mistake, he would shut the book with a movement of the finger, and the lesson came to an end. It meant that we were to go back, prepare the lesson thoroughly, and, then, come again ... He used to offer nafl prayers much and often at that time. From maghrib till a little before isha', he devoted himself exclusively to nafl prayers. His age, then, was between 20 and 25 years."
In 1908, Ilyas enrolled in Darul Uloom Deoband. There he studied the Qur'an, hadith, Islamic jurisprudence, and other Islamic subjects under notable Deobandi scholars, including Ashraf Ali Thanwi, Shah Abdur Rahim Raipuri, and Mahmudu'l-Hasan Deobandi. He studied the hadith collections Sahih al-Bukhari and Jami`at-Tirmidhi under Mahmudu'l-Hasan, on whose hand Ilyas took an oath of jihad against the British. Mahmudu'l-Hasan also advised Ilyas to approach Khalil Ahmad Saharanpuri, a disciple of Rashid Ahmad Gangohi, for bay`ah since Gangohi had died. Thus, under Saharanpuri’s supervision, Ilyas would complete the various stages of sulook in Saharanpur.

 Foundation of Tablighi Jamaat

Ilyas al-Kandhlawi became aware of the condition of Muslims in Mewat and their deviation from the tenets of Islam. Even non-Muslim historians have commented at length on their estrangement with Islam, as the following extract from the Alwar Gazetteer of 1878, written by Major Powlett, will show: “All the Meos are, now, Muslims, but only in name. Their village deities are the same as those of the Hindu landlords, and they celebrate several Hindu festivals. Holi is a season of special rejoicing among the Mewatis and they observe it like their own festivals, such as, Moharrum, ‘Id and Shab-i-Barat. The same is the case with Janam Ashtami, Dussehra and Diwali, The Meos engage the services of the Brahmins to fix the dates of marriages. They have Hindu names, with the exception of the word ‘Ram’, and their last name, often, is ‘Singh’, though not as frequently as ‘Khan’. Like Ahirs and Gujars, the Mewatis, too, observe Amawas as a holiday on which they abstain from work. When they build a well, they begin with the construction of a parapet in the name of Beeriyi or Hanuman, but when it comes to pillage, they do not show much reverence to the Hindu temples and other places of religious significance. If, on such an occasion, their attention is drawn to the sanctity of these establishments, they, unhesitatingly, says, ‘You are "Does" and we are "Meos".’ Meos are, largely, ignorant of their faith, i. e., Islam. Very few of them know the Kalima,’ and fewer still observe Namaz regularly. About the hours and rules of namaz, their ignorance is complete. This is the state of the Meos of Alwar. In the British territory of Gurgaon, the position is a little better because of the Madrassas. In some parts of Alwar, also, where the mosques have been built, the religious duties are observed to some extent. A few of them know the Kalima and offer up namaz and an attachment for the Madrassas, also, is found among them. As we have seen earlier, the initial ceremonies of marriage are performed by the Brahmins, but the real ceremony (of nikah) is performed by the Qazi. Men wear dhoti and loin-cloth. The pajamas are not worn at all. Their dress, thus, is wholly Hinduised. Even ornaments of gold are worn by men.” 
In the early 1920s, he prepared a team of young madrasah graduates from Deoband and Saharanpur and sent them to Mewat to establish a network of mosques and Islamic schools throughout the region.
He did not assign any name to this movement because his point of view was that, it is the duty of each and every Muslim of the world to give dawah (missionary efforts). He once said that if he had to attribute a name to his movement, it would have been Tehreek-e-Iman ("Iman movement"). The people of South Asia started calling the devotees Tableeghi. The new movement met with dramatic success in relatively short period of time, due to Ilyas' efforts. As a result many Muslims joined Ilyas’s movement to preach in every town and village of Mewat. When the first Tablighi conference was held in November 1941 in Mewat it was attended by 25,000 people, many of them had walked on foot for ten to fifteen miles to attend the conference.
Ilyas's followers note his dedication to dawah over all other priorities, noting an anecdote that, when visited on his deathbed by a friend, he said to him: “People out there are burning in the fire of ignorance and you are wasting your time here inquiring after my health!”

Views and Ideas

Replying to the question raised, viz. "Why are Muslims not granted rulership and leadership in the world?" he replied: "When we do not fulfill the commandments of Allah and refrain from the forbidden in our personal lives over which we have full control and there is no obstacle or compulsion, then how is it possible that we be entrusted with the governing of this world. It is only through the decision of Allah that the believers may be granted government on the earth so that they may seek His pleasure and establish His laws in this world. Now, when we are not doing this in the sphere of our own choice (in our individual lives), how can it be expected, when tomorrow we are given the reins of government. we shall do so?" 
Jannah (Paradise) is the reward of rights, i.e. one must forgo ones' rights and comforts for the sake of Allah and bear difficulties in order to fulfill the rights of others (which also include the rights of Allah). The reward for this is Jannah.
The real zikr (remembrance) is that in whichever condition, place or activity a person finds himself in, he should be aware of and fulfill the relevant commandments of Allah connected therewith. I advise my friends with the same zikr putting greater emphasis on it.
People have given lesser importance to their servitude (to the Creator) than their servitude and service to man. The slaves and servants of man are generally fully devoted to their employers to do the work they consider as their duty. Under the employers' instruction they run to and fro, not even concerned about their meals - whatever little comes to hand is consumed. However, when it comes to man serving his Creator, then it is based on convenience. Most of the time he will be indulging in his own desires and sometimes he takes out time to do some work for Allah. For example, he may perform salaat and give some money in charity or do some other religious work. He now believes that he has fulfilled his duty to his Creator. The real service to Allah is a continuous and fundamental one - a person should always be serving his Master. It should only be a necessity and not the object to satisfy his thirst, hunger and other needs. (This does not mean that everyone should give up their means of livelihood but the object should be that whatever one engages in, should be for the sake of Allah and for serving His Deen. As far as one's eating and drinking is concerned, these should be of a mere incidental nature (by the way) just as an employee will be doing all this while his main interest will be to do his employer's work).
One day in his dua he said: "0 Allah! On account of the unbelievers being Your creation, they deserve our compassion and mercy. Hence make us fulfil their rights while simultaneously make our hearts completely averse to their disbelief." 
Man's nature inclines faster towards despair. This is so because when one becomes despondent, he no longer regards himself responsible for making efforts and therefore remains idle. Understand it well that this is the trap of the shaytaan and nafs. To become despondent on account of lack of means and resources is a sign that you have become worshippers of these resources and that your faith in the promise of Allah and His unseen power is but little. Depending entirely upon Allah and with courage rise to the occasion and Allah will prepare the means otherwise, what can man accomplish by himself? Effort and struggle according to our full capacity is a precondition.
Every part and even the end of our actions should be accompanied by acknowledgement of its shortcomings and the fear of it being rejected. i.e. every good deed by nature should be done as best as possible but in the end it should be realised that Allah's rights could not be fulfilled as they ought to be. Moreover there should be fear and anxiety in the heart that because there may be shortcomings and corruption in our efforts, they may be rejected and thrown on our faces on the Day of Qiyamat. Thus on account of this apprehension, fear and anxiety. we should cry in front of Allah repeatedly seeking His forgiveness.
The owner and editor of "Al Hilal", a daily newspaper in Urdu, Hafiz Ali Bahadur Khan B.A., visited Hazrat on one occasion just before his demise, who, in spite of his extreme weakness and inability, spoke to him for about half an hour. He was very much impressed by this discussion and after reaching Bombay, in a few editions wrote about his impressions of Ilyas al-Kandhlawi's personality and significance of the work in such a way which until now was not expected to be acknowledged by any editor or leader. I received that copy of "Al Hilal" from somewhere and having read Hafiz's article, I became very happy and intended to read it to Hazrat. I took that paper with me hoping that on some appropriate occasion, I may attend to him and having seen the paper in my hand, he might himself inquire what was in my hand. I would then reply and have the opportunity to read the article to him. Contrary to hope and expectations, Hazrat did not inquire about it. After a long time I could not restrain myself and said to him: "Hazrat! On one occasion, Hafiz Ali Bahadur from Bombay came here and all thanks to Allah, he was greatly impressed. He wrote a few articles concerning our work in which he acknowledged its greatness and importance from which it is manifest that he understood it well. If permitted, I would read some of it to you."
He replied: "Molvi Sahib! What is the use of speaking about that work which was accomplished. We must see how much is still left of the work that has to be done. We must look into the shortcoming of what has been done. To what extent were there deficiencies and sincerity and how far have we lacked in having the greatness of Allah's order in mind. How much have we failed to adopt the example of our Nabi (Sallallahu alqhi wasallam) and in our search into the manners of practice. Molvi Sahib! To be happy at looking back without taking stock bf the above is just like a traveller who becomes happy looking back at the distance covered. Looking back should only be for the purpose of finding out shortcomings and to acquire the way to remedy them in future and to see what has to be done in the future. Don't look back at one who has understood our work and acknowledged it. Look at how many hundreds or thousands there are to whom we have not delivered Allah's words as yet and as to how many there are who, in spite of being informed and having acknowledged our work, are not taking part because of the lack of effort on our part.

 Advice to Dawah workers

Our workers must remember well that if their da'wah (invitation) is not accepted and instead they are insulted. They should not become despondent and frustrated. On such an occasion they should remember that this was the sunnah (established way) and heritage of the Arnbiya (alayhiqus salaam), especially that of our Nabi (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam). Where does everyone get the good fortune of being belittled and degraded in the path of Allah? And wherever they are welcomed and honoured, they should appreciate this and when people listen with enthusiasm to their talks it must be considered a favour fromAllah and at no time should they be indifferent to these favours. It should be considered a great favour to serve and teach these people even if they may be considered to be of the lower classes. In the Quran, we are reminded of this in the ayat:
He fumed and turned away, when the blind approached him for guidance.
At the same time one must keep a check on the deception of one's own nafs. The nafs should not consider this acceptance as its own perfection. This may lead to the fitnah (corruption)_of hero worship. Therefore one should always be on one's guard.
It is indeed a wrong concept that when others accept our invitation, we take it to be our success and if they do not, we consider it to be our failure. To have this idea is absolutely wrong in this path. The acceptance or rejection of the audience is their act. How can we be successful or unsuccessful by the responses of our audience. Our success is in fulfilling our task. If the audience do not accept our message, it is their failure. Why should their rejection be regarded as our failure? People have erred by regarding hidayat (guidance) as their responsibility whereas this is really the work of Allah. Our duty is only to make effort to the best of our ability. To give guidance was not even the responsibility of the Ambiya (Alayhimus salaam). Of course we should take a lesson from the failure of people when they refuse to respond; that there is something lacking in our efforts and we should try to improve in the future and the same time increase our du'aas in quantity and quality.
Our workers in general, wherever they go, should make efforts to visit the righteous Ulema and pious persons. The intention should only be to benefit from them and not to invite them to this work. These people are well versed and have experienced the advantages of the Deeni work they are busy with, hence you will not be able to convince them in a wholesome way that this work is of greater benefit than their other Deeni engrossments.The outcome will be that they will not accept your explanation. Once they say "NO" it will be difficult to change this "NO" to "YES". Your talk will not be heard and it is possible that you yourself will become uncertain. Therefore meet them only to gain benefit from their auspicious company. In their locality every effort should be made to stick closely to the principles of the work. In this way it is hoped that the reports of the progress of your work will reach them and draw their attention. Thereafter, if they do pay attention, you should request them to patronise and supervise you and with due reverence and respect explain the work to them.
Letters from the merchants of Delhi should be sent with the jamaats which go to Saharanpur, Deoband, etc. for tabligh wherein the Ulama should be informed with utmost respect that these groups are being sent to make tabligh to the public. The Ulama should be informed that their time is very precious and if they could spare some of their time to patronise these jamaats without sacrificing their time from their official duties or that of the students, they should do so. The students should only spend time under the supervision of their teachers. Without the surveillance of their teachers, students should not be allowed to take part in this work. The jamaats should also be instructed that if the UIarna do not pay full attention, they should not criticize the Ulama in their hearts but realise that the Ulama are doing more important work than them. They are busy in Deeni academic work at night also while others are sleeping in comfort. We should blame ourselves for their lack of attention because we did not visit them enough. They are paying more attention to those who have resolved to stay in their company for several years. He then continued: Even to entertain a bad thought about another Muslim can be the cause of destruction, so to criticise the Ulama is extremely dangerous. Then again he said: The basis of our method of tabligh is to respect every Muslim and to honour the Ulama. Every Muslim. on account of Islam, should be respected, and the Ulama, on account of their knowledge, should be honoured. Then he said: Until now, our muballighs have not yet mastered ilm and zikr (knowledge and the remembrance of Allah) and this is of great concern to me. The only method is to go tp the possessors of ilm and zikr so that they may do tabligh under their patronage benefiting from their knowledge and company.
If one Muslim loves another for the sake of Allah or another Muslim loves him sincerely for the sake of Allah, then this love and good thought will be a great treasure in the hereafter. Those Muslims who have love for me, I hope that, Insha-Allah (if Allah wills), Allah will keep my faults covered in the hereafter. To have faith in our empty-handedness is success in itself. None will be successful because of his actions. Only by the Grace of Allah can success be acquired. Rasulullah (Sallalahu alayhi wa sallam) has said, "None will enter jannat through his actions. The Sahabah (Radhiaflahu anhum) asked, "Not even you, 0 Rasulullah!." He replied, "Not even me except that Allah covers me with His Mercy." After relating this Hadith, Maulana started crying and caused others to cry.
"If any one feels himself to be unfit for this work of tableegh, it does not mean that he must sit down. By no means, should this be so. In I fact he should make an even greater effort to take part and make others do the same. In some cases, by the continuous efforts of a few incompetent people, good reaches the competent people and flowers into full bloom and according to the Hadeeth, those incompetent people receive the full rewards. "Whoever invites to good will receive its rewards and the reward of those who act accordingly. And the one who introduces a good practice in Islam will have its reward and the reward of those who practice I accordingly." (Hadeeth) So he who is unfit must strive even more. Considering myself to be unfit, I am also engrossed in this work with the hope that by my efforts, the work will reach some competent person and then Allah will bestow upon me also those high rewards for this work

Source : Wikipedia

401. Mirza Abul Fazl

Abul Fazl, Mirza (Urdu: ميرزا أبوالفضل), (d.1865-1956 AD), was a native of Allahabad, India. Among the contemporary Muslim scholars Dr Mirza Abul Fazl, learned in Arabic and Sanskrit, was a pioneer who took interest in the study of the chronological order of the Qur`an and invited the attention of Muslim scholars towards its importance.
Dr Mirza was the great grandson of Haji Ali Shirazi. His genealogical tree as described in his dictionary of the Qur'an, Ghrib ul Quran is Mirza Abul Fazl, son of Fayyaz Ali, son of Nauroz Ali son of Haji Ali Shirazi. It cannot be ascertained as to when his remote ancestors came to India and settled in Bengal. This family belonged to Shiite school of thought.
His early education was completed in Bengal and on the basis of distinctions received during the course of his education, he was admitted to M.A. and Ph.D. in Berlin with a scholarship. His subject in M.A. was Sanskrit.
In his late thirties that Dr. Mirza Abul Fazl started to study the Qur'an. As in the case of studying other sacred scriptures he tried to delve deep into the true spirit of the Qur'an directly from original text.
He hailed from East Bengal now forming a separate country, Bangladesh. He was a profound scholar of Sanskrit and Arabic. After securing a scholarship he proceeded to Germany in or around, 1893, and was awarded Ph.D in Sanskrit. In Germany he also studied Homeopathy, as this system of treatment was very popular in Germany in those days. While he was in Germany he developed an interest in homeopathy and obtained highest qualifications from Germany and the United States of America gaining extraordinary expertise.
He was a simple man of few words and true Muslim and a servant of Isalm. The purpose of his life was to present Islam in its original form.

He returned to India after spending many years abroad with the resolve to participate in the freedom struggle. He stuck to his decision until his last. He maintained his link with the Congress in some capacity or the other. After returning to India, he stayed in Calcutta and then settled in Allahabad.
Jawaharlal Nehru's family was not only known to him, he was a regular visitor to Anand Bhavan. When Jawaharlal Nehru was elected as chairman of Allahabad Municipality, he offered Mirza Abul Fazl a position in the municipality. He was there in 1929. He had friendship with Pandit Sunderlal and Dr Rajender Prasad also. It is but easy to visualise his possible influence on the freedom movement in some way or the other.
Mirza Abul Fazl came to Hyderabad in 1937 on the invitation of Professor Jameelur Rahman and adopted homeopathy as his profession. His clinic was located opposite Sagar talkies.
He used to hold here meetings, academic discussions and debates with reputed personalities of the time such as Akbar Yar Jung, Khalifa Abdul Hakeem, Professor Abdul Majeed Siddiqui and Professor Jameelur Rahman. He would be in touch with members of both high and middle class society, in connection with treatment and remedy of ailments. Dr Hashim Amir Ali was among his close disciples who drew maximum benefit from his company.
Dr Mirza had translated Qur'an in Bengali and Hindi languages too, unfortunately, they were not found. It is said he wrote more than one hundred and fifty books in all, including books and booklets, most of them remaining unpublished.
He started making an Arabic-Urdu dictionary of Qur'anic words which is very comprehensive under the title of Gharib ul Quran, with explanatory notes. It was being published by the Government Printing Press under special care of Dr Hashim Amir Ali.
He published a collection of about one thousand authentic Ahadith (Traditions of the Prophet). Its preface consisting of 8 to 9 pages is a rare work of brevity (saying too much in a few words).
He was the first Muslim to present a translation of the Qur'an into English along with the original Arabic text. His first translation into English, with the Suras arranged according to the chronological sequence suggested by Theodor Nöldeke, however, differed but a little from that of John Medows Rodwell in that the placement of two Surahs he differed from Noeldeke, and because of changing the order of these two Surahs the arrangement of eight Surahs had to be changed, which was published in two volumes with Arabic text and English rendering in 1910. The use of Arabic metal type, instead of litho, was a further improvement.
His last edition of "The Koran in English" appeared in 1955, a year before he died in May 1956, at the age of 91.
Dr. Hashim Amir Ali, dean of agriculture at Osmania University, Hyderabad, was his disciple of prodigious caliber.


  • Islam Explained (1909)
  • The Qur'an, Arabic Text and English Translation Arranged Chronologically with an Abstract (Allahabad, 1910)
  • Islam and Buddhism
  • Gharib ul Quran (1947)
  • "Muhammad in the Hadees, or Sayings of the Prophet Mohammad". (Abbas Manzil Library, 195-.)
Source : Wikipedia

400. Akhtar Raza Khan

Akhtar Raza (Urdu اختر رضا ; Devanagari: Hindi: अख़्तर रज़ा) is an Islamic jurist, . Akhtar Raza was born on 23 November 1943 (24 of Dhu al-Qi'dah 1362 Hijri), in the district of Saudagran in the city of Bareilly, India. The name given during his Aqeeqah was Muhammad. He was also given the name Muhammad Ismail Raza. However, the name by which he is currently known is Akhtar Raza.
He has been ranked 26th in the list of Most Influential Muslims of the World by Royal Islamic Society of Jordan. Known for his Scholarship and Taqwa he has been adjudged as Leader of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jama'at in India.
He belongs to the Hanafi Madhab of the Sunni denomination of Islam, which generally gives special respect to the Aulias (Muslim saints and holy men after Muhammad) and appreciates Sufism. The Barelwis are opposed to many elements of the Deobandi sub-sect. Since India is a secular state, the government does not appoint the Grand Mufti (called Mufti-e-Azam in Persian, or Mufti `am in Arabic), nor other religious office-bearers, so it is up to the Muslim community of India to appoint this post. He runs a website called, which also lists his Fatwas.


When Akhtar Raza reached the age of 4 years, 4 months, and 4 days, his father, Islamic scholar Maulana Ibrahim Raza Khan, arranged for his Bismillah Khwaani (commencement of Islamic studies) His maternal grandfather Mustafa Raza Khan, performed the ritual.
Akhtar Raza received his basic Islamic education at home and completed the basic recitation and the study of the Quran under the guidance of his mother. He then studied further under the guidance of his father. Having completed his basic studies at home, he was enrolled in the Darul Uloom Manzar-e-Islam in Bareilly. There, under the guidance of teachers and scholars, he studied many books, commencing with the basics such as Mizaan, Munshaib, Nahv Meer and proceeding to much more advanced books such as Hidaya Akhirain. On Friday, 15 January 1962, (24 of Dhu al-Qi'dah 1382 Hijri), Akhtar Raza reached the age of 20, and received Khilafah (ordination into spiritual succession) by Maulana Mustafa Raza Khan.
Akhtar Raza then studied tafsir and ahadith for three years from 1963-1966 at the Al Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt. He achieved the distinction of being one of the best foreign students to have studied at the Al-Azhar University, securing the first position during every examination. He was awarded the Jamia Azhar Award by Colonel Jamal Abdul Nasir upon graduating from the Al Azhar University, He was also presented with a Certificate of Merit in the field of Ahadith (plural of Hadith, the records of the sayings of Prophet Muhammad). When he went back many years later for a visit, he received the Fakhr e Azhar (Pride of Al Azhar) award.
Akhtar Raza returned to India at the age of 24, where a large crowd awaited him at the Bareilly railway station. An article describing his return to Bareilly Shareef was written by Umeed Razvi. It was printed in the December issue of the Monthly Ala Hadrat magazine under the title, Great Welcome. The article stated: A beautifully coloured and scented rose from the garden of Ala Hazrat, his Eminence, Maulana Akhtar Raza Khan Qaadiri Al Azhari, the son of Hazrat Mufassir-e-Azam Hind Maulana Ibrahim Raza Khan arrived in Bareilly Shareef after a lengthy stay at the Al Azhar University in Cairo. He was welcomed at the Bareilly Junction Railway Station by many well-wishers, friends, families, great Ulama and students of Madressa Manzar-e-Islam under the spiritual supervision of Huzoor Sarkaar Mufti-e-Azam-e-Hind Maulana Mustafa Raza Khan.

His paternal ancestry

Akhtar Raza Khan, son of Mufassir e Azam Hind Maulana Ibrahim Raza Khan, son of Hujjat-ul Islam Maulana Hamid Raza Khan, son of Ala Hazrat Imam Ahmad Raza Khan, son of Naqi Ali Khan, son of Maulana Taqi Ali Khan, son of Hafiz Kazim Ali Khan, son of Maulana Azam Khan, son of Maulana Sa'adat Yaar Khan, son of Maulana Suja'at Jangbahadur Saeedullah Khan.


Akhtar Raza has received many Ijaazahs and Sanads from all over the world, including from from Mustafa Raza Khan in many Silsilas including the Qadri, Chishti and Naqshbandi.

 Scholarly activities

Akhtar Raza is well versed in several branches of Islamic learning, including Tafsir, Hadith, Fiqh, Sarf, Nahv, Tajweed, Tassawuf, Mantiq, Seerah, Tareekh, Hayat, Balaghah, Aqaid, Reyazi, Touqeet, Jafar, and Kalam. He also speaks and writes Urdu, Hindi, Arabic, Persian and English fluently.


Akhtar Raza has written many books on a vast range of topics covering cience, religion and philosophy. A collection of fatwas by the title of Azharul Fatawa is his magnum opus. He also did many translations.
  • Al-Haqqul Mobeen (الحق المبين)
  • Difa Kanzul Iman (دفاع كنزالايمان)
  • T.V.Video Ka Sharai Operation (ثيوي ويديوكا شرعي ابريشن)
  • Miratun Najdiyah (مرات النجديه)
  • Tasweeron ka Sharai Hukm (تصويروكاشرعي حكم)
  • Sharah Hadees e Niyat (شرح حديث نيت)
  • Aasar e Qiyamat (اثارقيامث)

 Azharul Fatawa

Azharul Fatawa is a collection of English-language fatwa given by Akhtar Raza. The collection has been widely acclaimed and accepted by Sunni Muslims all over the world and specially by Sunni Muslim Communities living in the United States, Europe, South Africa and Western countries, as the rulings mainly refer to these countries.


Akhtar Raza's Diwan (Collection of Naats) was published for the first time entitled Naghmat-e-Akhtar. Later, it was published entitled Safina-e-Bakhshish in 1986. It contains many Naats in the Arabic and Urdu language.

 Islamic Chief Justice of India

Akhtar Raza was declared the Qaazi-ul-Quzzaat or Qadi-ul-Qudat (Muslim Chief Justice) for the entire country of India, during the Urs e Razavi in October 2006 in the presence of many Ulama, prominent Islamic Scholars and thousands of people, including:
  • Mazhar-e-mufti-e-azam sadrul ulama Allama Tehseen raza khan.
  • Muhaddith e Kabeer Mufti Zia ul Mustafa Azmi
  • Mufti Abdul Mannan Azmi
The title is only symbolic, because India is officially secular.

Centre of Islamic Studies


Centre of Islamic Studies Bareilly India
Akhtar Raza established the Islamic university Jamiatur Raza in May 2000, so that it could be conductive to profound learning and the thorough correct understanding of the Holy Qur'an and Sunnah, so that the hidden part of Islamic Ideology can be discovered in order to suit the present situations in the scientific and technological era.

 Services for Islam

There are many institutes working under the guidance of Akhtar Raza, including
  • Markazi Darul Ifta, Bareilly
  • Akhtar Raza Library, Lahore
  • Markazi Darul Ifta, Holland
  • Imam Ahmad Raza Academy, Durban, South Africa
  • Madrassa Raza Darul Uloom, Bombay
  • Madrassa Ghausia Jashn e Raza, Gujrat
He is the president of:
  • All India Jamiatul Ulema
  • Shariah Board
  • U.P. Muslim Personal Law Council
  • Shar'ee Council of India


Mufti Muhammad Akhtar Raza Khan is the torch-bearer of the Razvi Silsila. He has many mureeds all over the world, including; Iraq, Pakistan, Madina, Makkah, India, UK, Holland, South Africa, America, Turkey and Malawi. Many of his mureeds (disciples) are great Ulema, poets, authors, doctors and research scholars.
Amongst his famous Khulafa (successors);
  • Maulana Asjad Raza Khan (his son)
  • Maulana Qamarul Hasan Bastawi (America)
  • Syed Shahid Ali Razvi (Rampur)
  • Shaykh Abu Bakr (Kerala)
  • Maulana Saeed Noori (Mumbai)
  • Haji Haneef Tayyab (Pakistan)
  • Allamah Syed Irfan Shah Mashhadi (UK)
Amongst his famous students;
  • Maulana Mannan Raza Khan (his brother)
  • Maulana Muzaffar Hussain (Bareilly)
  • Maulana Wasi Ahmed Razvi (Birmingham)


He has issued many fataawa (plural of fatwa, Islamic rulings) on many different Islamic matters.

 Organ transplant and blood transfusion

"One cannot donate blood and organs because these are the Amanah (property) of Allah, therefore it is not permissible to donate any part of one's body or (donate) the blood."

One Imam conducting Jummah prayer in two places

"There is no legitimacy to lead Jummah prayer anywhere after you have performed it in one place. It is not allowed to perform Jummah prayer in the Jail at any cost. Prisoners (Muslim Prisoners) should recite Zuhr individually."

 Birth of a girl

Akhtar Raza stated that it is un-Islamic to be dissatisfied at the birth of a girl, as all children are to be considered a blessing.

 Islamic Attire

"It is required that a person dresses in a certain manner or has to wear a uniform to identify his profession. If these rules are not followed, then one is dismissed. Similarly, in Islam, different codes of dressing have been set aside for Muslims so that they can be recognized among the non-Muslims. If this dress code is not followed, then we deserve to be punished as well."
Akhtar Raza disallowed wearing of the Tie and said Muslims must strictly abstain from it. He has written a full book regarding this called Tie Ka Masa'la.
"He who shaves his beard or gets his beard less than fistful is declared sinful. To such a person who commits this sin is not able to lead the prayers. It is Makruh-e-Tahrimi (Strongly Disliked) to perform Salaah behind him."


Akhtar Raza stated that the qualities that one should look for in a marriage partner are piety and God-fearing. Neither the boy nor the girl should be forced into a marriage. The bride's mother's consent is just as important. Further he declared that the name of the bridegroom, his father's name and the amount of Mahr (dower money paid by groom to bride) be discussed and accepted by the bride. Further the man should be allowed to see the girl without her knowledge.


The Grand Mufti, and in general all Barelwis, oppose the Wahhabi movement of Islam, which is funded and encouraged by Saudi Arabia. Akhtar Raza has criticized the Wahhabis, and issued fatwas that permit Muslims making supplication, near the mausoleums of the Aulias (Muslim saints after Muhammad) and allowing intercession to be sought from them (i.e., praying to Allah though the medium of the Sufi saints). He says: In fact, Wahhabis have refused the commands of the Holy Quran and authentic Traditions of the Holy Messenger (Sallal-Laahu Ta'ala Alaihi Wasallam) and have adopted very irrespective manners towards the Saints and pious persons. They are misled and every baseless act of Wahhabis is against Islamic faith.
Further, he says, It is my advice to all Sunnis and especially to the Mureeds (disciples) of Silsila Razvia to keep away from all these wrong doings. Please also avoid sending your children to Wahhabi Madrassas and Darul Ulooms and bring them up in a Sunni environment and make them refrain from being Wahhabi.
The Deobandi school of Islam, which has stricter rules in regards to reverence of Sufi Saints, has been declared un-Islamic by Akhtar Raza: It is not permissible to read Namaaz behind a Deobandi Aalim (singular of Ulema) on any account. Namaaz performed behind a Deobandi Aalim, as well as behind unbelievers, is totally incorrect.


During Akhtar Raza's August 2008 trip to Syria, he was asked to pray for rain by the Damascus Ulema. He did so and caused rain at a time of year, when it had not rained in five years. During the same trip, Sheikh al-Sabah stated that he when he walked by the place where Akhtar Raza was staying, he saw Anwaar (plural of nur, lit., light) emanating from within.
Other attributed karamat include several cases of Indian Hindus accepting Islam after seeing Akhtar Raza in dreams.


Many Scholars have paid tributes to the contributions of Akhtar Raza, which include;
  • Munazir-e-Islam Syed Irfan Shah Mashadi Bradford
  • Allamah Zia ul Mustafa Qadri Azmi
  • Qazi Abdul Raheem Bastawi
  • Mufti Abdul Wajid Qadri
  • Allamah Dr Ashraf Asif Jalali
  • Mawlana Ghulam Zarqani, son of late Maulana Arshadul Qaudri
  • Mawlana Yaseen Akhtar Misbahi
  • Ameen Mian Qaudrii
  • Qamaruzzaman Azmi

Abdullah Fad’aq Hashimi (Da’iyah of Makkah and student of the late Sayyid Muhammad Alawi Maliki), who referred to the Shaykh as “Fadilat al-Imam al-Shaykh Muhammad Akhtar Ridha Khan al-Azhari al-Mufti al-Azam fi al-Hind”
Isa Mani al-Himyari (Muhadith of Dubai) who referred to the Shaykh as “al-Shaykh al-Aarif billah al-Muhadith Muhammad Akhtar Ridha al-Hanafi al-Qadiri al-Azhari”
Shaykh Waathiq Fu’ad Ubaydi (Baghdad) who called him “Shaykhuna al-Jalil, Sahib al-Radd al-Qati, Murshid al-Saalikeen, al-Mahfouz bi-Rabb al-alameen, al-Aalim al-Fadhil” and “Taaj al-Shari’ah”
Jamal Abdul Kareem al-Dabban (Baghdad) who referred to him as “al-Imam al-Allamah al-Qudwah Sahib al-Fadhilat al-Shaykh”

Answer to criticisms

As for the claim that the Shaykh makes takfir of everyone other than himself and those affiliated with him is another exaggeration, rather, a lie that stems from animosity. The Shaykh has replied to this accusation in Arabic in his “Mira’at al-Najdiyyah” published by the name “Haqiqat al-Barelwiyyah”, which is the reply to Qadhi Atiyyah’s endorsement to Ihasan Ali Zahir’s “al-Barelwiyyah” (Published in Egypt by Dar al-Muqattam, 2009) asking him to produce a single nas of our ulama in which they have made takfir of Ibn Taymiyya, Ibn Abdul Wahhab and their followers. Rather, it is these people who make takfir and tadlil of the entire ummah. This accusation is the popular one found in “Nuzhat al-Khawatir” and “al-Barelwiyyah” about Barelwis and is false.

Source : Wikipedia