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Khwaja Hasan Sani Nizami

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Khwaja Hasan Sani Nizami, Sajjada Nashin of the Dargah of the Sufi saint Hazrat Khwaja Nizamuddin Aulia, a great religious scholar and litterateur, died in the early hours of 15 March at his residence in Basti Hazrat Nizamuddin at the age of 83 years after a prolonged illness on account of diabetes and heart disease. After his early and religious education at home, he graduated from Jamia Millia Islamia but his all-round knowledge was so vast that he took part in hundreds of radio talks, wrote innumerable essays and articles on wide-ranging topics, represented India in the United Nations-sponsored All Religions Conference and delivered extension lectures in many Indian and foreign universities and reputed educational institutions, got republished many books and  writings of his father Khwaja Hasan Nizami which were not easily available, 12 of which are on 1857 war of independence.

He was a member of the United Nations Religious Initiative, San Francisco (USA) and at the same time was associated with Delhi Urdu Academy, Ghalib Academy and Ghalib Institute and with almost all literary institutions of Delhi.

After the death of Hakeem Abdul Hameed, founder of Hamdard Dawakhana and Jamia Hamdard, he served as Chairman of Ghalib Academy. He was honoured with the Govt of India’s Delhi Gaurav (Pride of Delhi) Award during AB Vajpayee’s prime ministership. He was also the founder-member of All India Soofi Conference, Hyderabad, secretary of Khwaja Hasan Nizami Memorial Society and member of National Ameer Khusrao Society’s Governing Council.

His father had started a monthly magazine, Munaadi, which he continued publishing under his editorship from 1955 onwards. He was an authority on the history of Delh and had deep knowledge about different stages of thd city’s history, places and buildings etc. Of the six brothers and sister (five brothers and sister Kausar Nizami who is in Pakistan), Khwaja Hasan Nizami and Begum Khwaja Mahmooda Bano Nizami, all the four brothers had died earlier and he was the only surviving brother. He was a true representative of India’s Ganga-Jamuni culture and civilization and a champion of Hindu-Muslim unity.

Born on 15 May 1931, he had almost an encyclopaedic knowledge of many topics, events and sciences. His mureeds (disciples), estimated to be in lakhs, are spread all over the world. He left behind his sister (Begum Kausar Nizami), besides many nephews and nieces but no children of his own because he remained unmarried throughout his life. His funeral prayer, in accordance with his will, was offered twice, one was led by his special mureed Syed Rashid Nizami and the second by Dargah Masjid’s Imam Maulana Syed Minhaj Nizami. He was laid to rest in the night of 15 March in Khwaja Hall of the Dargah beside his father Khwaja Hasn Nizami’s grave.

Condolence meetings were held at dozens of madrasas as well as at milli, religious and literary organisations where rich tributes were paid by leaders and intellectuals. He is said to be the 34th generation in a lineage going back to Hazrat Ali, the fourth caliph and son-in-law of the Prophet (pbuh).