By Mohammed Khalid Razvi Nagauri,
Chief Imam of Usmani Mosque & Director, Darul Uloom Imam Ahmed Raza , Leicester, UK.
Hazrat Muffakir-e- Islam Allama Qamaruzzaman Azmi is great scholar of Ahlus-Sunnah. There is magnetism in his speech which is rarely found in others. He is most attractive to intellectuals as to the general public. I was with Hazrat recently at the International Milaad conference in Toronto, Canada. I remember one of the organizers telling me how the local journalists are always keen to listen to the speeches of Hazrat and cover it widely in their newspapers.
In this brief article I wish to highlight Hazrat's work as a key enabler of Islamic institutions across the world. Hazrat is a patron of many institutes, Islamic centers and Mosques in different countries. There is no doubt that it is honor for these institutes itself if such a great personality of the world was it's patron. Like someone said that in general people get to be known after their attachment with a famous institution but there are fewer such a leading world figures whose name give institutions recognition and respect. Indeed Hazrat is one of those great noble leaders of the Islamic world.
Al-jamiat-ul-Islamia (Islamiya University) Rounahi, Faizabad, India
Hazrat had just finished in 1964, at the age of eighteen, his course at the prestigious Nadwat-ul-Ulema University and Ashrafia University. At the same time, Dr Sayyid Mahfuz-ur-Rehman had approached His Holiness Hafiz-e-Millat to send a top talented scholar to promote mainsteam Sunni Islam in Faizabad, Uttar Pardesh (Nothern State). His Holiness Hafiz-e-Millat appointed Hazrat Muffakir-e-Islam to cultivate this undeveloped and difficult area for the betterment of Muslims living there.
Hazrat began his activities in this area immediately upon the commandment of His Holiness Hafiz-e-Millat. The area was a very small village with few supporters. There were no facilities or any school building to teach children. Hazrat began teaching under a tree. However, Allah had bestowed him with such incredible skills that in the same year in 1964 he prepared the local people to lay the foundations for a proper Islamic Institute. This institute, the Islamiya University was established and students upon hearing Hazrat's name began coming from far provinces like Bengal, Bihar and Gujarat.
This institute affiliated to the prestigious Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt is now one of the top Islamic Universities in India and well known around the world because of its outstanding educational standards.
The graduates of this University are serving not only in India but in many foreign countries like Europe, America, Europe, Africa and Middle East.
We also acknowledge and pay tribute to others who struggled with Hazrat to establish and run this University. These include Hazrat Qari Jalaluddin Sahib (who is managing the University), the Late Dr Sayyid Mahfuz-ur-Rahman; the Late Haji Ilyas Sahib and the late Haji Riyaz Sahib.
The successful establishment of the Islamiya University inspired others in the neighboring districts and Hazrat then played a significant role in supporting those neighbourhoods to establish institutes in their localities. As a result there are now Sunni institutions after every 10 to 15 miles in that region.
Aljamiat-ul-Ashrafiya (Ashrafiya University), Mubarakpur, India
Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam has extraordinary relations with the Ashrafiya University since the beautiful era of His Holiness Huzur Hafiz-e-Millat.
When His Holiness Huzur Hafiz-e-Millat planned to convert this institutions to an Arabic University, Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam pledged his wholehearted support to make this a reality. He attended numerous gatherings with Hafiz-e-Millat to progress this.
By the time Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam came to UK in 1974 Allah Almighty had fulfilled the wish of His Holiness Huzur Hafiz-e-Millat and all the arrangements for the first Arabic University were in place. During Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam's stay in the UK, he received an offer to manage the Asharafiya University. This offer was generated from His Holiness Huzur Hafiz-e-Millat. However, it was almost impracticable for Hazrat to leave the vital responsibilities and to make the swift move back to India.
Arrival to United Kingdom
Hazrat came to Bradford, UK in 1974 upon the invitation of Hazrat Allama Arshadul Qadri to work along with him on the platform of World Islamic Mission. Since his arrival to the UK huge work was done in a very short period of time. These included:
- The establishment of the Islamic Missionary College (IMC)
- The establishment of the International Dar-ul-Iftaa
- The establishment of Al Falah (an organisation for young people)
- The publication of Al-dawat-ul-Islamiya - Monthly Islamic Journal
By 1979, Hazrat moved to Manchester. Allah Almighty bestowed Hazrat with great wisdom and perception that very shortly he laid the foundations of Ibad-ur-Rehaman Trust and built a huge Mosque with capacity to hold 2,500 worshippers with the cost of £1.5 million. Another great institution Kulliyat-ud-dirasatil Islamiya (Collage of Islamic studies) was formed under his supervision costing £1 million. He also established another monthly journal as its chief editor, Hijaz London which became a very popular monthly journal.
During this period Hazrat was travelling on regular basis to Leicester between 1976 to 1978 to cultivate the land there for a mainstream Sunni institution. This is before Allama Shahid Raza Naeemi came to Leicester. Hazrat chose the Southerland Mosque to deliver his lectures. However, even here he had to debate and hold 'manazara' because it was controlled by Jamaat-e-Islami. However, the speeches of Hazrat unveiled the true face of the Jamaat-e-Islami and soon the Mosque became part the Sunni mainstream.
Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam also participated in the foundation of Masjid Noor-ul-Islam Bolton along with Hazrat Sayyid Noorani Baba and Hazrat contributed with his immense support in the initial period. Alhamdulillah this mosque now is recognized as a beautiful place of worship.
Hazrat also contributed to building of the biggest Mosque in Birmingham, Ghamkol Shareef. In one electrifying and spell bounding fund-raising speech people gave £145,000 upon his call.
Hazrat visited numerous times to Al-Khizra Mosque in Glasgow Scotland which is shaped with enormous support of World Islamic Mission. Hazrat Allama Arshadul Qadri also visited this mosque for a few times. There was sufficient support of Allama Azmi sahib to establish this centre.
There is a long list of mosques which were founded in the headship of Hazrat Allama Shah Ahmed Noorani Siddiqi (Alihirrahmah), Hazrat Allama Arshadul Qadri (Alihirrahmah), Hazrat Maulana Shahid Raza OBE and Hazrat Mufakkire Islam in Holland. These include:
- Jamia Masjid-e-Taibah
- Jamiah Masjid-e-Quba
- Masjid Anwar-e-Madina
- Masjid Gulzar-e-Madina
- Masjid Al firdous
- Madinatul Islam College
- Al Madina Masjid
Masjid-e-Al Noor, Huston, America
This is the first purpose built mosque for Ahlus-Sunnah in entire America. This is a massive and amazing mosque with a huge vicinity. Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam has been coming to USA since 1986 and Hazrat himself laid the foundations for this great center. Recently a great scholar who studied at the Islamiya University, Hazrat Allama Qamarul Hasan Misbahi Sahib is serving as Khatib and Imam in Masjid Noor since many years.
Islamic Centre Chicago
This centre was founded under the guidance of Hazrat Mufakkir-e-Islam and Hazrat Shaikh-ul-Islam Maulana Sayyid Madni Ashrafi.
The first mosque in Norway was founded under the banner of World Islamic Mission in 1980 and Hazrat has given his continuous support for its development.
Masjid Noor-ul-Haram, Toronto, Canada
Hazrat has been visiting Canada for many years. Following the departure from this world of Qaid-e-Ahle Sunnat Allama Shah Ahmed Noorani Siddiqi (Alihirrahmah), Hazrat became the Chairman of World Islamic Mission Canada. Hazrat Qaid-e-Ahle Sunnat presided over this organization previously. An 11 acre land has been purchased to build the biggest and most beautiful Mosque in Canada. The Masjid Noor-ul-Haram is now entering a phase when work could begin.
Sunni Dawate Islami
The Sunni Dawat-e-Islami website describes Huzoor Mufakkir-e-Islam as the chief mentor and guide of Sunni Dawat-e-Islami. He attends the Annual International Ijtema in Mumbai which attracts 150,000-200,000 people each year.
The Sunni Dawat-e-Islami is an international organization working in India, United Kingdom, USA, Canada, Africa, Portugal and Saudi Arabia. It promotes the true beliefs of Islam under the teaching of the true Ahle-Sunnah wa Jamaah through following activities:
- Weekly congregation (Ijtema)
- Educational visits (Dawra)
- Annual International Congregation (ijtema)
- SDI publications
- Sunni Dawate Islami On-line
- Noor-e-Madina College
- Heera School
- Malik bin Dinar College
- Qadria College
- Ismail Habib Mosque
Hazrat Muffakir-e-Islam not only considers the building of Islamic centers, Darul-ulooms and Mosques in different countries as critical but also modernizing the syllabuses that are more compatible with contemporary issues. Scholars should also be trained in different languages to allow them to work in any part of the world.
The current position is outmoded and obsolete. As a result the world is misunderstanding Islam and Muslims. It is vital to deliver our massage in the most constructive and significant manner around the world and this will only be possible if we have modern and reformed training systems in place within all our institutions.
I like to extend my sincere congratulations on this occasion to the entire esteemed team of Raza Academy Mumbai for their tributes to Hazrat Allama Azmi Sahib. Indeed your great work will be remembered for ever.
May Allah grant long life to our Master and leader Hazrat Allama Qamaruzzaman Khan Sahab Azmi and May Allah safe guard him from all calamities and bestow him with good health. May Allah give us the ability to adopt his ideology to spread the true message of Islam. Ameen.