Special Reports

Maulana Zeeshan Hidayati remembered

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New Delhi: All India Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat held a special condolence meeting chaired by Mushawarat’s President Syed Shahabuddin in its central office here on 27 December to condole the death of Maulana Syed Zeeshan Hidayati who was president of Majlis-e Fikro Amal, Safinatul Hidaya and other organisations and was associated with many other organisations including Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat and Muslim Personal Law Board. He was an active central committee member of both these organisations. He used to visit various parts of the country on his own as well as a member of Mushawarat’s delegations. Late Maulana’s elder brother Maulana Syed Zulqadr Rizvi and younger brother Maulana Syed Aqilul Gharwi and other important members of Mushawarat including the organisation’s Working President Dr. Zafarul-Islam Khan, Vice President Maulana Muhammad Ja’far, Jamat-e Islami’s secretary Maulana Rafiq Qasmi, Welfare Party’s president Mujtaba Farooq, Navaid Hamid, Social Democratic Party’s President E. Abu Backer and Popular Front of India’s President E. Abdur Rahman also participated in this meeting.

The speakers highlighted the qualities and characteristics of the late Maulana Hidayati. All said that he was an example of a scholar and community worker who lived with the people and had the pulse of the community. They said he was a great religious scholar in practice also. He was a meticulous planner and accomplished whatever he decided to do after giving it a lot of thought. Shia Conference leader Shariful Hasan Naqvi said that Maulana's planning was so perfect as if he was an experienced member of the Planning Commission. He said the Maulana used to organise religious assemblies and meetings every two or three months and he himself followed its decisions and made others also fallow them.

A number of speakers spoke about the bold attitude he had adopted in a meeting with J&K governor N.N. Vohra in connection with a brutal attack on a village of Muslim Gujjars near Jammu and its burning and destruction in 2008. The Maulana’s outburst came when the governor showed indifference to what had happened to the Gujjar Muslims. The Maulana strongly took the governor to task, admonished him for his insensitivity to the pains and agonies of the people and reminded him of his legal responsibilities. All members of the delegation were surprised at his boldness. The governor quietly listened to what he had told him.

In this condolence meeting the speakers praised Maulana Hidayati for his kind heart for the community and for millat’s unity. He was above sectarian prejudice and was a sincere worker for Shia-Sunni unity. He advised everybody to adopt a moderate course in life. Maulana Aqilul Gharwi said that his brother believed that Shia-Sunni unity and harmony should be at the political as well as academic levels. He said that Maulana Hidayati at various points in his life published magazines in Urdu, Arabic, Persian and English including Islam in the Changing World. During his brief stay in Qum (Iran), he published a monthly magazine in Persian. He said that his mind was a storehouse of planning and ideas.

In this meeting, prayers were offered to Allah ta’ala for his forgiveness and highest awards in the Hereafter and to give patience and strength to his family to bear this loss.

Many other functions were held at different places in Delhi and other cities to condole his death and rich tributes were paid to him. An important meeting was held at the Safinatul Hidayah in Delhi’s Jogabai Extension area on 30 December. It was attended by hundreds of mourners. The Iranian ambassador Seyed Mahdi Nabizadeh, Maulana Aqilul Gharwi, Working President of Mushawarat Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan and others spoke during this meeting.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 January 2012 on page no. 13

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