Archive for the ‘Life of Prof. HM Fateh’ Category
Administrator on April 19th, 2012
It is that time of year again when gatherings are held in memory of the founder of Leeds Makkah Masjid, a lover of the beloved Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), a hafiz of the Glorious Qur’an, a loving teacher, an inspiration to all, an ambassador of peace, a sufi master, a spiritual guide, Shaykh Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad (May Allah shower mercy on his soul).
It has been 7 years since Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib departed from this world on the evening of Tuesday 26 April 2005 (17th Rabi ul-Awwal 1426).
All those who had the honour to meet him will testify that Hafiz Sahib’s whole life revolved around learning, reciting, teaching and reflecting on the Holy Qur’an. His long and fruitful association with the Glorious Qur’an is not hidden to anyone. He dedicated his life to the Qur’an and Sunnah, living while immersed in the love of the beloved of Allah, Muhammad Rasulullah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Imam Hafiz Sahib was indeed one of the very few distinguished scholars of Islam who excelled in both worldly and religious knowledge and understanding.
A Jalsa and annual gathering in memory of Shaykh Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib
Date: Sunday 29 April at 2:30pm after the ZUHR PRAYER.
Venue: Leeds Makkah Masjid, 36 Thornville Road Leeds LS6 1JY
Imam Muhammad Asim Hussain (London)
Allamah Shahid Raza Nai’mi OBE (Leicester)
Maulana Muhammad Umar (Rochdale)
In the gathering, Professor Sahib’s students, colleagues and contemporaries will talk about the life and works of Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad (May Allah shower mercy on his soul) in English and Urdu.
Brothers and sisters are welcome.
To read further about the life of Shaykh Hafiz Fateh Muhammad, please click on the following links:
Administrator on April 18th, 2012
The late Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib was the founder of Deen Foundation. He spent his entire life gaining and imparting knowledge about Islam. He believed that knowledge is the foundation of the Deen of Islam and lies at the heart of success in this life and in the hereafter.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib was one of very few distinguished scholars who excelled in both secular and religious knowledge and understanding. In 1984, he undertook a Masters degree in English Language, Teaching and Linguistics at the University of York. He had previously held the esteemed post of head of the English Department at the International Islamic University at Islamabad, Pakistan. After settling in the UK, he taught the Holy Qur’an in mosques, colleges and universities, to the young and old alike. He gave lectures and translated and interpreted many surahs of the Holy Qur’an in English.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib was a professor of English, yet he was also a master of the Arabic language, Islamic history and contemporary affairs. He memorised the Holy Qur’an at a very young age and then spent the remainder of his life instilling the love of the Divine message and love for education (religious as well as secular) in the hearts of the people.
With his deep insight into the Quran and his understanding of the personality of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), he propounded the peaceful message of Islam his entire life. He believed that people could only come to obey their Lord and respect each other if they were knowledgeable about the rights of their Lord and rights of other human beings. He believed that it was due to lack of education that people were facing financial, social, economical, political and cultural difficulties.
The success of human beings is linked with learning and knowledge. The first message of the Qur’an encouraged human beings to learn. It was due to Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad’s passion to spread education that he sponsored many students in various parts of the world throughout his life to gain education. His students currently hold positions such as lecturers, doctors, lawyers, politicians, engineers and ‘Ulema’ in different parts of the world.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad was a God fearing person. He was a noble, compassionate, generous and honourable person, and like all truly great men, extremely humble and modest. He always strived to assist poor families to fulfil their obligations to arrange the marriages of their children, and provided financial assistance to those who struggled to meet the costs of medical treatment and other living expenses. Hence, these principles are amongst the main objectives of Deen Foundation.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad suddenly passed away while studying the biography of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) on 26th April 2005 (17th Rabi-al-Awwal 1426), at the age of 63. At the time of his passing away, he was the imam of Leeds Makkah Masjid (UK).
Muhammad Irfan Chaudhary
Administrator on April 17th, 2012
We are all familiar with the famous Prophetic saying “Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave”. Few people implemented this hadith into their everyday lives with as much dedication, ardour and passion as the late Shaykh Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad (may Allah have mercy on his soul and grant him the highest ranks of paradise).
I was fortunate enough to have known Hafiz Sahib (as he was fondly known by his students and congregation) practically my whole life. I was even more fortunate to have been taught to read and memorise surahs from the Holy Qur’an by him. Seldom did I enter Madina Masjid, where he was based before the construction of Makkah Masjid, to find him doing anything other than seeking knowledge – either reading a book on Islam or reading the book he loved above all other books – the Holy Qur’an.
When Hafiz Sahib read from the Holy Qur’an his love for the book that is the fountain of all wisdom and knowledge was apparent to all fortunate enough to witness him. The love emanated from his face, which glowed when he recited the words of God. The love resonated in his voice, which frequently trembled with emotion as he was reciting. It poured out of him and into the hearts of the listeners. Who could fail to be moved by the sight of this great man reciting Surah Ar’Rahman with tears streaming down his face as he read the verse: “Then which of the blessings of your Lord will you deny”? Because you knew that Hafiz Sahib thanked his Lord for all the blessings he had been bestowed with every second of every day, and you knew that he himself was a blessing sent by Allah Almighty for the benefit and betterment of the community of Leeds.
Hafiz Sahib held education and knowledge in the highest esteem. Not only his own education and knowledge but also that of the community he served. That is why he held daily tafseer classes after prayers. Most importantly, Hafiz Sahib understood the importance of educating the Muslim youth long before his contemporaries had grasped the idea. As far back as the mid-eighties, when many of the first generation of Muslims who had migrated to this country from Pakistan, Bangladesh and India were still dreaming about returning to their home lands with their families after a few years of working in England, Hafiz Sahib was delivering his Friday sermons in a combination of his native language Urdu and the native language of the youngsters in his congregation, English. He understood that unless Islam was accessible to the youth in their mother tongue, it would become an alien concept to them that would ultimately get lost in translation.
Hafiz Sahib was acutely aware that in order to counterbalance the attractions and distractions modern day Britain posed for Muslim youngsters growing up in the country, the Muslim youth needed to be spoken to in their own language and at a level that was accessible to them. His door was always open to youngsters, and one of his most memorable characteristics was that youngsters flocked to him for advice and solace. He was a sympathetic ear and a source of practical guidance – he was a mix between a loving parent, a concerned uncle, an understanding teacher and inspiration to everyone. He was seen as so much more than simply the Imam.
Hafiz Sahib used every opportunity to stress to the youth that it was incumbent upon them to make the most of the advantages of the British education system so that they could grow up to be professionals and Muslims could be represented in all walks and at all levels of British life. Unlike his contemporaries who did little other than stress the importance of seeking Islamic knowledge, he placed almost as much importance on secular knowledge as knowledge of the Sharia. He was himself a unique blend of a Professor of English and a Qur’an Hafiz. He saw no reason why the two cold not go hand in hand, and he was keen to stress this to the youngsters in his congregation. His message was simple; lslam does not preclude its followers from seeking success in this life as well as in the life after death. While we must not ever take our eyes off the ultimate goal – seeking Allah’s pleasure and attaining paradise – it is perfectly permissible to seek the fine things in this life also. And in order to attain these fine things, education is the key.
Hafiz Sahib was truly a man who led by example. He led a simple life that seamlessly blended excellence in the religious and secular fields. He demonstrated to the youth that it was possible to strive for success in worldly affairs, and he was therefore seen as an accessible figurehead who many leaned on for support. His presence is to this day sincerely missed in the community of Leeds.
Reflections of a female Student
Administrator on April 29th, 2009
Following couplets were submitted by students of Hafiz sahib and read out at the annual Jalsa held at Leeds Makkah Mosque on 26th April 2009:
The lover of the Prophet, the advocate of Islam
The ambassador of peace, the beloved of us all
Lived his entire life in Masjid and Mihrab
Left for the heavens having enlightened us all
He was available to us day and night
Dedicated to his mission of spreading the light
Constantly in the Masjid reading the Quran
Always smiling, illuminated by Allah’s light
The news of his sudden departure rendered us lost
Memories of Hafiz sahib remains alive in our hearts
How he instilled in us love for the Prophet
And opened our eyes to the wonders of the Quran
Four years have passed since he left us for the heavens
Yet the void in our hearts is as vast as ever.
Administrator on April 22nd, 2008
A Jalsa and annual gathering is being held in memory of a great religious scholar, an ambassador of peace, an advocate of love of the Holy Qur’an and the beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and the founder of Leeds Makkah Mosque – Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib
TIME: 2:30 pm After ZUHR PRAYER
DATE: Sunday, 27th April 2008
VENUE: Makkah Masjid
Part of the proceedings will be broadcasted live on Leed Radio FM.
Administrator on April 22nd, 2008
It is three years since our Imam departed from this world in April 2005 to live in the ever-lasting world. Below is an article written by one of his students highlighting some aspects of Hafiz Sahib’s life:
Shaykh Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib, affectionately called Hafiz Sahib by all those who knew him, (May Allah have mercy on his soul) was the great Imam of Madina Masjid from 1984 – 2005 and of Makkah Masjid from 2003 to 2005. He passed away suddenly on the evening of 25 April 2005 (17th Rabi ul-Awwal 1426) whilst reading a biography of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). His sudden departure from this world was a tragic loss to the Muslim community of Leeds which he had ardently and diligently served for over 20 years of his life.
All those who had the honour to meet him will testify that Hafiz Sahib radiated love for the Holy Qur’an and our beloved Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). . He dedicated his life to gaining knowledge of Islam, living in accordance with its principles and encouraging others to do the same.
Hafiz Sahib was one of very few distinguished ‘Ulemas who excelled in both worldly and religious knowledge and understanding. He first came to England from his native Pakistan in 1984 to undertake a Masters degree in English Language Teaching and Linguistics. He had previously held the esteemed post of head of the English Department at the International Islamic University at Islamabad. He returned to Pakistan for a short while, before permanently settling in England in 1988 and taking up the post of Imam and Khateeb of Madina Masjid and spiritual guide for the community he served.
Hafiz Sahib – an ideal Imam
Hafiz Sahib was not only a religious instructor but had also been a professor at one of the most prestigious Universities in the Muslim world. He was therefore passionate about ensuring that religion was accessible to second generation Muslims in the UK. He reminded Muslims that they had not come to the UK as Pakistanis, Indians etc, but as Muslims. He advised Muslims to leave aside cultural issues and concentrate singularly on the cause of living Islam as it was given to them by the Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Hafiz Sahib was always mindful of the numerous examples in the life of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) of living peacefully alongside those of other faiths, whilst not loosing one’s own faith and identity, and he strived to follow these examples.
He emphasised that Muslims should earn their place in society and win the hearts and minds of the host community by showing that the values taught by Islam are the same values that all human beings hold dear. For this reason, a long before there was any wide-spread recognition of the fact that there was a danger of youngsters losing touch with their religious identities as a result of the fact that most religious sermons were being held in Urdu, Hafiz Sahib was preaching in both English and Urdu. He attached great importance to ensuring that youngsters had access to Islamic knowledge in their first language, English. Thus his professionalism enabled him to pursue and resolve intricate issues and challenges faced by the second generation with clarity and conviction, always preferring debate and discussion whilst observing the Islamic etiquette rather than just demanding that youngsters did as told.
Another issue close to Hafiz Sahib’s heart was ensuring good relationships between people of different faiths. To this end, he was an active participant in the Leeds multi-faith forums, which saw him recite the Qur’an at inter-faith events and welcome those of other faiths into the Masjid.
Hafiz Sahib & the Qur’an
Hafiz Sahib led a simple life which revolved around his role as Imam. His first love was the recitation of the Qur’an, which he did alongside whatever other task he was doing. Those who had the honour of hearing him recite the Qur’an know that his pronunciation was impeccable and his voice was melodious and full of emotion. The hearts of his listeners could not help but be moved, and through him his audience felt closer to Allah.
Hafiz Sahib was also passionate about ensuring that Muslims did not blindly follow what they were told, but had a real understanding of the principles of Islam. His aim was to fill the hearts of the Muslims in his community with a love for the Qur’an as immense as his own, and instill in them a desire to understand the Qur’an as he did. Over the last 10 years of his life, Hafiz Sahib held daily study circles after prayers. During these study circles, he provided detailed analysis and commentary on almost half of the Holy Qur’an in a combination of both English and Urdu. His daily classes were attended by both old and young.
Hafiz Sahib’s distinguishing trait was his unpretentious appearance and remarkable simplicity. Despite being well-versed in religious and worldly matters, he never promoted himself or tried to seek fame. Instead, he followed the way of his predecessors who worked behind the scenes, displaying profound insight and solicitude for the Ummah andshowing exceptional acumen for resolving the challenges presented by modernity. Hence, despite the fact that he was associated and affiliated to numerous national and international organisations, institutes and academies, he did not…..
Despite being a great scholar and leading a very busy life, Hafiz Sahib never shied away from doing mundane tasks. He used to say that given the fact that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) assisted his wives with household jobs, it could not be a stain on one’s status or masculinity to following his example. He was also proud to clean the mosque, saying that not everyone is given the honour of cleaning the house of the Lord.
Hafiz Sahib & Makkah Masjid
The biggest aspect of Hafiz Sahib’s legacy is without doubt Makkah Masjid, which was his vision and which only came into being as a result of his tireless efforts. For many years, Hafiz Sahib was deeply concerned that the converted terraced houses which formed Madina Masjid were not adequate to cater for the growing Muslim populations of Leeds 3, 4 and 6. His vision was that the community should have a Masjid of which it could be truly proud, which was not only aesthetically pleasing but which would also meet the practical needs of the Muslim community it would serve. He talked about a Masjid that would elevate the spirits of all who saw it and symbolise the beauty of the religion of Islam.
To this end, Hafiz Sahib worked assiduously firstly to help find the perfect location in which to build his dream Masjid, and then to raise the £1.8 million required to fund its construction. The passion with which he talked about the new Masjid encouraged the local communities to donate the staggering sums needed; very few individuals have the charisma and zeal to convince others to donate so generously. He reminded everyone that if they contributed towards building a house for Allah (swt) in this life, then, as is promised in the Holy Quran, Allah (swt) would build a house in Paradise for them in the hereafter.
Following years of hard work, Makkah Masjid opened its doors in June 2003. Without doubt, it would never have come into existence without Hafiz Sahib firstly having the vision of a magnificent Masjid located in Headingley, Leeds and secondly having the dedication to make his dream a reality.
Those who knew Hafiz Sahib as their Imam, their teacher and their spiritual guide are only too aware that he was a truly unique individual, who cannot be replaced. He was a very inspirational and dynamic person. He wanted to see the learned and professionals work together to advance the position of the Ummah, and reach mutual understanding and respect throughout the world. In a life span of 63 years, he will be remembered for, among other notable things, being a great scholar of Islam who practiced what he preached and instilled love for the religion in those who came into contact with him. His entire life was dedicated to steadfastly serving Islam and Muslims.
There are too many details about his life to cover in such a short article. However, to note a few, Hafiz Sahib emphasised greatly – and showed us practically in the way he lived – the following matters :
1. Love of the beloved Prophet and the Qur’an,
2. Love for seeking knowledge and displaying love for the people of knowledge;
3. Simplicity in our whole way of life
4. The importance of making an effort in one’s life to improve one’s status in the world and the hereafter.
We pray to Allah (swt) that He grants Hafiz Sahib the highestplace in Paradise, and makes the Holy Prophet (pbuh) and the Holy Qur’an his intercessors on the Day of Judgement. Ameen.
Administrator on May 8th, 2006
The following article was written by Choudhary Maskeen sahib of Leeds 12 and it appeared in Daily Jang on 3rd May 2006. Please click on the image below to view the full article.
Administrator on September 15th, 2005
On Tuesday evening, 26th April 2005, as the Christians count time, Fateh Muhammed, Imam at the Makkah Masjid and Al Medina Mosques in Hyde Park, died in his room while reading. Earlier he had led the evening prayers. He had been unwell for some time.
Some will remember the big interfaith gathering at the Civic Hall, organised by the Leeds Faiths Forum, on Sunday 8th May 2000 on Islamic Social Action, when Fateh Muhammed opened the session with a recitation or Tilawat from the Qur’an, Surah 13:11. He did it with such poise and clarity that every heart stilled. He later completed a glossary of all the Islamic terms used in the conference report.
Others will remember Fateh coming to All Hallows at the invitation of Ray Gaston on the Sunday after 9/11 and reciting from the Qur’an in such a way that opened the hearts of many in the congregation that day to the real beauty and wisdom present in Islam.
It was Fateh who then read out at the Friday community prayers at the mosque, a few weeks later, the statement All Hallows Church had issued against the war on Afghanistan in solidarity with local Muslims.
He was a man of deep faith and humility. Ray remembers arriving at the mosque for one of his many discussions with Fateh, over sweet tea and fruit, to find him sweeping the stairs on his hands and knees. He loved poetry and the welcome from this prayerful man of faith was always warm. He entered into discussion with energy and readily debated issues of concern to Muslims and Christians. David remembers a graciousness that seemed to swell up from a deep well of faith.
Fateh was a scholar of Islam and English literature and had held an important post in Islamabad. He had come to the little Al Medina Mosque and loved and was loved by his people as he worked with them in bringing to realisation the vision for a new mosque in Hyde Park. He will be greatly missed.
A tribute from the Revd Ray Gaston, Vicar of All Hallows Church, and the Revd David Randolph-Horn, Associate Director, Leeds Church Institute and Secretary, Leeds Faiths Forum.
With special thanks to All Hallows church
Administrator on September 15th, 2005
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad Sahib is one the few Ulama belonging to Ahle Sunnah school of thought in UK who have equal command of religious as well as contemporary knowledge. He has been serving as head teacher and Khateeb at Al-Madina Jamia mosque functioning under the auspices of Leeds Muslim Council.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad was born to a landlord family of Chaudary Roshin Deen in Jammu city of Indian Occupied Kashmir in 1942. He started his education by memorising the Holy Quran by heart. The first ever teacher of Professor Sahib was his brother in law, Hafiz Umar Deen who was a resident of Bern village of Occupied Kashmir. He migrated to Sialkot via Phukhliaan, Gondal after establishment of Pakistan in 1947. After suspension of his Quranic education for some one and a half year, he completed it form Hafiz Umar Deen in Sialkot. He started contemporary modern education after that and continued his religious education simultaneously. He got the Quranic education including the art of Qir’at and Tajweed from the teacher of the teachers, Qari Abdul Rahman, Shaikhul Qurra, Qari Abdul Aziz Chishti and his cousin, Zeenatul Qurra, Qari Muhammad Hussain.
He passed all the examinations right from primary to M.A with distinction and won scholarships. He got eighth position in the University of the Punjab in B.A. He did his M.A in English in 1965, M.A Islamic Studies in 1967 and M.A. Arabic in 1968 from the same university. After doing his M.A English, he joined education department in 1965. He was appointed as English Lecturer in Jinnah Islamia College Sialkot. He was transferred to Government College Shakar Garh in 1969 wherefrom he came to M.A.O. College Lahore in 1972. He taught English there for six months. When late Zulifqar Ali Bhutto nationalised the educational institutions he returned to Jinnah Islamia College Sialkot and remained the head of the English Department there for a long period.
When International Islamic University was established in Islamabad in 1981, he joined it and remained the head of the English Department for two years. He came to England in 1984 for higher education and did his Masters in English Language Teaching and Linguistics from the University of York. Then he stared work for his doctorate, however, he has to discontinue his education due to ill health. He returned to Islamabad two year’s later and resumed his responsibilities at the International Islamic University. He came to Britain permanently in 1988 and joined the Al-Madina mosque of Leeds Muslims Council. He had also remained attached with the same mosque when he had come to England for higher education.
Professor Sahib told that he also visited Occupied Kashmir in 1982. His father got a grand mosque constructed from his own pocket and at his own land at Subhaash Nager of Jammu city. During this tour, Professor Sahib also went to Srinager and was greatly impressed by the love of Kashmir people especially the school children for Pakistan and Islam.
Professor Sahib also visited New York at the invitation of his pupil, Muhammad Ahmed in 1983. He recited the Holy Quran at a mosque of Jersey City during the Taraweeh prayers in Ramadhan as well as delivered Juma sermons. He said that after witnessing the love and sincerity of the newly converted black Muslims there, he was fully convinced that Islam is not only the religion of the East but it was also the religion of the West. He said that the prophecy of the Holy Quran about sending his Holy Prophet to teach humanity the true religion is about to be materialised. This prophecy has been made at three different places in the Holy Quran with slight change of words. Professor Sahib said that he was doing his PhD from the Leeds University on the exegesis of the Holy Quran, particularly the Coherence of the Holy Quran. At the same time, he continues to render services as Imam, Khateeb and teacher at the mosque. Both his sons are also Hafiz and Imams.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad said during the course of the conversation that he was always attached with the saintly people. He had special spiritual relation with Hazrat Allama Peer Muhammad Husain of Sialkot and after his death with his son, Hazrat Peer Bashir Ahmed. He also delivered Juma sermons at Kashmiriaan Mosque at Rangpura, Sialkot, after peer Sahib’s death probably in 1964. This service continued for some twenty year till 1984. He has also been linked with Syed Muhammad Ashraf Alias Kashfi Shah Nizami who is the father of prominent lawyer and former law minister, S.M. Zafar and Doctor S.M. Iqbal. He was the spiritual successor and Khalifa of Shamsul Ulama Shaikhul Mashaikh, Hazrat Khawaja Hassan Nizami Dehlvi in Pakistan. Professor Sahib also got the honour of leading his funeral prayers at Chak Qaziaan near Shaker Garh. However Professor Sahib swore the oath of allegiance to Zial-ul-Ummat Peer Muhammad Karam Shah Al- Azhari.
Talking about religious services and activities after coming over to England, Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad said that when he came to England in 1984, the number of people who came to say the Juma prayers at the mosque was very low. However, he thanks God that now some eight hundred people offer Juma Prayers. Nearly two hundred children are getting religious education here. Interested children are memorising the Holy Quran by heart as well. Some children have already memoried the Holy Quran by heart and are now getting education in universities.
When asked whether lack of command of English language on the part of Ulama can be held responsible for the estrangement of the youth from religious, Professor Fateh Muhammad Sahib said that it is correct. If we do not give education to the new generation in English, they would not become fully conversant with the religion. Even under ordinary circumstances, when people migrate to another place, their children do suffer due to the language problem. The regrettable thing is that like in Pakistan, parents in England do not take interest in the education of their children. On their part, the children do not take interest either. He said that he delivers a lecture daily on Quranic teachings and explains it both in Urdu as well as in English. It is important for us to give religious education in English in order to make the new generation understand religion of Islam fully well.
Talking about the future of the new Muslim generation in Britain, Professor Fateh Muhammad said that despite their ignorance of English, Ulama have been making efforts to attract the new generation to Islam. God willing, the future of the Muslim youth is very bright in this country. The new generation is becoming more and more inclined to Islam and if we compare the situation with that of Pakistan, more Namazis are found in British mosques than those in Pakistan. Our mosque is jam-packed during Friday prayer. However, hard work and affection is the basic condition to keep the love of religion kindling in the hearts of the new generation.
Referring to his services in the field of writing and compilation, Professor Fateh Muhammad said that he could not do any considerable work in this field so far. He said that when he was working for Doctorate, four or five of his articles were published in international journals. Hazrat Peer Muhammad Karam Shah had desired that the exegesis of the Holy Quran, Jamalul Quran, authored by him should be translated into English. God willing, it would soon be published.
Professor Hafiz Fateh Muhammad said that the Leeds Muslim Council does not only run the affaires of the mosque but also actively participate in other issues and affairs of the Muslim community. He said the Council did an excellent work against the blasphemous and cursed writer, Rushdi. We also collected funds for the Muslim community of Bosnia as well as the suffering people of Afghanistan. We also collect funds for the oppressed people of Kashmir and send it through the Muslim Hands working under the patronage of Sahibzada Syed Lakht-e- Hasnain Shah or through the All Jammu and Kashmir Sunni Hurriyat Council, Britain or nay other Muslim organisation. We also collected two thousands pounds for the self-reliance fund raised by former Prime Minister, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif. Besides we have been asking the people to contribute for the fund and remit their money to Pakistan through banking channels instead of Hundi.
Professor Sahib said that presently, Doctor Haji Muhammad Jamil Malik is General Secretary of the Leeds Muslim Council, who is PhD in Economics. He has his own firm of Accountancy. He is imbued with the spirit of Islam and urge to serve the cause of the Muslim Ummah. He is assisted by Joint Secretary, Chaudhary Haji Muhammad Munir who has been associated with the council from the very beginning. He had also been Chairman of the council. He is very sincere, humane and gentle person, Chaudhary Haji Qurban Hussain, is the Chairman and chaudhary Haji Fazal Rahman in the treasure of the council. All the colleagues are imbued with the spirit of serving Islam and are actively participating in collecting funds and donations for the mosque.
People from Leeds, 3,4 and 6 and adjoined areas come to our mosque to offer Friday prayers. Sixty to seventy people offer daily prayers. It is reflective of the attachment of the people to Islam and the same love and attachment is required construction of bigger, expansive and grand new mosque. Professor Sahib said that a new expansive and grand mosque is under construction under the auspices of Lees Muslim Council near the Madina mosque. This new mosque would be called Makkah Mosque, and an amount of a half million pounds has so far been spent on its construction. Whereas the total cost is estimated the 1.5 million pounds. Basic infrastructure has been built. It is expected that the mosque would be completed within next two years. The present Al- Madina mosque would continue to function at its present site Madina mosque would continue to function at its preset site even after the completion of the Makkah mosque, which will accommodate about 2500 people in its three floors.
To a question, Professor Sahib said that Islam spread in the Indo-Pak Sub-Continent due to the efforts of Sufis. Similarly efforts are underway in this country to attract the non-Muslims to Islam. Different Mashaikh pay visits to this country every now and then. Some of them have established centres here in which Zikr gatherings are held and work for the promotion of Islam is carried out. Some forty men and women have embraced Islam since his coming over to this country. For students of Leeds University embraced Islam last year. They are leaving for Morocco to learn Arabic. All this is due to the efforts of Sufis and religious scholars. Thanks to Allah Almighty a prominent orientalist of Leeds University also embraced Islam recently.
Referring to the occurrence of unwantedd incidents in some mosques, Professor Sahib said that the main reason is politics. Since are community cannot take part in the local politics, most of the politics centre round Pakistan and Kashmir. If a person gets a post in the mosque committee, it satisfies his egotism. There are other factors as well. The effects of the days of ignorance and lack of love for religion are also visible. Then we have prejudices on the basis of family background. Added together, all these factors make the situation complex.
Talking about unity and harmony among Ulama belonging to Ahle Sunnah school of thought, Professor Fateh Muhammad Sahib said that all the Ulama are working actively in their respective areas. However, a wrong impression is being conveyed to the people due to their disunity. That is why we are making efforts to unite the Ulama because better results can be achieved through coordinated and united efforts. It would be possible only when we rise above ourselves and work together for the cause of Islam and show tolerance towards others.
Professor Sahib said that he has two sons, Hafiz Qari Muhammad Asim and Hafiz Qari Muhammad Qasim. Qari Muhammad Asim has done his L.L.B from the Leeds University and is getting training to become a solicitor. He also renders the service as Khateeb at Al-Madina mosque during the absence of his father. He also Leeds Taraveeh prayers during Ramadhan. He is an eloquent speaker. Hafiz Qari Muhammad Qasim is conducting a computer course at Bradford University.
(This biography is taken from ‘Ulamas of United Kingdom’ by Khalid Athar)