By WordforPeace Correspondent
All India Ulama & Mashaikh celebrated 71st Independence Day with great fervor
All India Ulama & Mashaikh Board organized a national event to pay tribute to the freedom fighters of the country—from 1857 to 1947— on the occasion of I-Day. The event was entitled in Urdu: “Ek Shaam Azaadi Ke Parwanon Ke Naam” (Tribute to the Freedom strugglers on the eve of Independence).
Notably, this event was held not only in Delhi, but across the country, particularly in the Sufi shrines and dargahs like Ajmer Sharif, Dargah of Makhdoom-e-Simnan at Kichhauchha, Makhdoom Shah Mina Lucknow, Gulbarga Shareef, Dargah Banda Nawaz among many others.
Addressing the Delhi’s event at Ghalib Academy, Dargah Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia, Vice President of Delhi Unit (AIUMB), Syed Fareed Nizami said: The country’s freedom has been achieved at the coast of lives, untiring struggles and sacrifices of our nationalist Muslim visionaries. We are breathing the free air in India because of their struggles”.
Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi, noted Islamic scholar, media researcher and writer revealed the untold facts about the 1857 revolt—the first freedom movement in India. He particularly recalled the ulema and other revolutionaries of the Indian Rebellion against the British imperialists. He stated:
“In today’s critical circumstances of communalism, the 1857 revolt should particularly be recalled. More than 70 percent of the soldiers in this first freedom struggle were Hindus. On the other hand, Muslim leaders like Maulana Ahmed Shah, Bahadur Shah Zafar, Khan Bahadur Khan, Begum Hazrat Mahal, Firoz Shah and Azimullah Khan were the most prominent characters in the annals of the revolt”.
Mr. Dehlvi continued: “Remarkably, Nana Sahib, Rani Laxmi Bai and Tantya Tope declared Bahadur Shah Zafar, a Muslim King, India’s first independent ruler on 11 May 1857. Similarly, Ram Kunwar Singh, Raja Nahir Singh, and Rao Tula Ram exerted herculean efforts and sacrifices to uphold the 1857 revolt. Thus, the first battle for India’s freedom was pioneered by a coalition of Hindu and Muslim leaders”.
Mr. Dehlvi concluded that when our country was enslaved, the ulema like Allama Fazle Haq Khairabadi gave a hard-hitting fatwa against the British and declared the independence war a binding duty for all Muslims.
Speaking in the program, All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board’s spokesperson, Maulana Mukhtar Ashraf said that the ulema and madrassas have significantly contributed to the first freedom movement. Today, although things have changed a bit, the patriotism of Sufi-oriented Indian Muslims remains firm and unshakable. “Today we have gathered here to send blessings (sawab) to the souls of the freedom fighters who have rescued our country from the English looters”, he said.
Yunus Mohani said that Allama Fazle Haq Khairabadi, Maulana Shaukat Ali, Maulana Mohammad Ali Jauhar and Maulana Abdul Bari Firangi Mahli, and many more names that we do not know, have to be recalled today. While mentioning the freedom activism of Bahadur Shah Zafar and his ilk, he said that it is also important to mention Maulana Hassrat Mohani on this occasion because he was the first to demand the absolute independence of the country. He gave the slogan, “Inquilab Zindabad”, which is still full of veins, and it is the greatest tribe, but sadly forgotten today.
The Minhajul Quran Delhi president Syed Ahmed Ali Mujaddidi Sahib was the chief guest in the event. He said: This effort of the All India Ulama & Mashikh Board to remember all the independence leaders will set a great tradition.
In addition, Hazrat Syed Azam Ali Nizami Sahib, Editor of Mahnama Kanzul Iman, Maulana Zafruddin Barkati Saheb, AIUMB Joint Secretary in Delhi, Sayyed Shadab Hussain Rizvi Saheb also spoke on the theme.