Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

Born in Uttar Pradesh in the town of Azamgarh in 1925, Maulana Wahiduddin Khan came from a family which had been involved in India's freedom struggle since 1857. It was thanks to the pro-independence atmosphere at home that, while still a very young man, he became a staunch nationalist in the period prior to India gaining its freedom in 1947.

After graduating from a seminary of traditional Islamic learning, he turned his attention to modern thought. Well versed, as a consequence, in both classical Islamic learning and modern science, he began to contribute articles to various journals and newspapers and addressed public and private gatherings in order to advocate a policy which should be both constructive and nationalist. To give full expression to these positive ideas, he established the Islamic Centre in Delhi in 1970. Subsequently, the organ of the Centre, al-Risala was launched, in Urdu, in 1976. This magazine, consisting a almost entirely of his own articles, quickly acquired a wide circulation throughout the Urdu-speaking world, and has done much to awaken in Muslims new awareness of their social responsibilities. The first issues of the English and Hindi versions of Al-Risala were launched respectively in February 1984, and December 1990.

The Maulana, a regular contributor to several newspapers and journals has to his credit, a number of books, which have been incorporated in the curricula of several Arab universities. The Maulana has also written a two-volume commentary on the Holy Qur'an.

At that time, in 1992, when the atmosphere was so highly charged throughout the country, he felt the necessity to convince people of the need to restore peace an amity between the two communities so that the country might once again be set upon the path of progress. To fulfill this end, he went on a 15-day Shanti Yatra along with Acharya Muni Sushil Kumar and Swami Chidanand Maharashtra, addressing large groups of people at 35 different places on the way from Bombay to Nagpur. This Shanti Yatra contributed greatly to the return of peace in the country.

It is because of his advocacy of peace in the country and his espousal of the cause of communal harmony that he is respected by all communities, and in every circle of society. Invited to meetings by all religious groups and communities within India and abroad, Maulana sahab is, in effect, India's spiritual ambassador, spreading the universal message of peace, love and harmony.

Maulana Wahiduddin Khan Articles

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