Biography of Shaykh Abdullah Ghaznawi

Shaykh Sayid Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi was born in 1811/1230 in Afghanistan in the city of Ghazni in the district of Bahadurkhel. His real name was "Muhammad A'zam" but he changed it to Abdullah. His father's name was Muhammad ibn Muhammad Shareef. He belongs to Umarzai family of Kakezai tribe of Afghanistan.

His studies in Afghanistan

Abu Bakr Al-Ghaznawi wrote: "In his youth, he learned from scholars of Ghazni." (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 220)

Afterwards Shaykh Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi went to Qandahar were he benefited from Allamah Habeebullah Al-Qandahari (1213-1265). Allamah Al-Qandahari was a great scholar who authored more than 35 books in Pashto, Persian and Arabic. Al-Qandahari also benefited from the two great scholars Sayid Ahmad Al-Barelvi and Isma’eel Shah Ad-Dehlawi when they came to Qandahar in 1241H with their troops.

Sayid Abu Bakr Al-Ghaznawi mentioned that after studying under him for a period, Abdullah Al-Al-Ghaznawi returned to Ghazni and whenever he had a difficult question, he would write to Allamah Al-Qandahari for a Muhaqqaq (verified) answer. After some time, he went to him once and asked him questions, and Al-Qandahari said in a sitting with other scholar: "This person understands the Masail (topics) of the religion in such a manner that even I don’t understand." (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 221)

Abul Hasan An-Nadwi said: "The fame of Muhaqiq Al-Qandahari's knowledge and nobility reached India through his students and books. His student Molvi Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi gained a great reputation in the religious circles of Punjab and India, and people by the great knowledge of this student can imagine the greatness of his teacher." (“Seerat Sayid Ahmad Shaheed” p39)

His studies in Delhi

For the knowledge of Hadith, Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi traveled to Delhi to study under Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi, who inherited the prestigious chair of Shah Waliyullah in 1258.

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi went to Delhi with Ghulam Rasul Al-Qal’awi and Hafiz Muhammad ibn Barakallah Al-Lakhwi, and when they arrived to Dehli train station, there was an old man who received them and brought them to the Madrasah of Mian Sahib and helped them in carrying their luggage. After he went to his house, and when Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi asked to see Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi, he was told that Mian Sahib was the person who came to pick them at the train station and brought them here. It left them astonished, and when Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi came after, they started to excuse themselves but Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi said: “You came to learn Hadith, then its first lesson of it is to serve the creation (Khidmah Al-Khalq).” (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 13)

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi and his two companions learned “Sihhah Sittah” (6 books of Hadith) from Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi, but they hadn’t completed “Sahih Al-Bukhari” and the revolt of 1857 started in Delhi on 16 Ramadan 1273 (revolt of Indians against British rule). During this revolt, there were a loot of shootings and killings, so Shaykh ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi decided to return to Afghanistan.

Return to Afghanistan and exiles

After returning to Ghazni in 1857, Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi started to preach the teachings of the Book and the Sunnah, and fighting Shirk, innovations and blind following, but the Hanafi innovators gathered against him and complained to the ruler. Among these Muqalid there were Mulla Ad-Darrani, Mulla Al-Mashki and Mulla Nasrullah Al-Lohani. The ruler of Kabul Ameer Dost Muhammad Khan gave the ruling of exile to Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi.

Ghulam Rasul Mehr wrote in one of his essay: “Just thinking about the hardships faced by Molana Sayid ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi for the way of truth and Sidq brings distress to the heart. He was on his own against the whole government, but Molana Sayid Abdullah’s feet remained steadfast and he did not feel any distress. He left his home and relatives and was ready to leave happiness and comfort rather than leaving propagating what he considered to be the truth.” (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 31)

So Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi went to Sawat and afterwards Hazarah and afterwards to Punjab, where he started to teach the Book and the Sunnah. After some time he went to Derah Isma’eel Khan and remained there for a period of time. After he tried to go back to Ghazni thinking maybe conditions have changed, but unfortunately Ameer Dost Muhammad Khan ordered him to exile again.

So ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi with his family went to Yaghistan but he was attacked there by innovators Muqalideen and many of the Shaykh’s students were injured, and he and his family managed to escape safely by Allah’s grace despite his house being put to fire.

His son Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi wrote about these trials: “Glory to Allah! During these times of trials, exiles and animosity from all sides, I have seen him (his father) happier than I have ever seen any governor.” (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 228)

While he was residing in another place in Yaghistan, Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi heard the news of Ameer Dost Muhammad Khan’s death, so he decided to return again to Ghazni. The innovators Muqalideen warned the new ruler Ameer Sher Ali Khan against Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi. The Shaykh wrote to the ruler that he is oppressed by these jealous people who are propagating calumnies against him and he should not follow his father in exiling him, but the ruler wrote back saying that he cannot oppose all scholars just to accommodate one, so he ordered the Shaykh’s exile.

After few days, while Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi had left Ghazni, he learned that Ameer Sher Ali Khan’s government was toppled and Ameer Afzal Khan took the power, so he returned to Ghazni again. But unfortunately, the same innovators ecxited the new ruler who ordered the arrest of Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi and his three sons ‘Abdullah, Muhammad and Abdul Jabbar. This time, the innovators seeing that Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi was persisting and always returning, plotted to get the Shaykh killed. They convinced Ameer Afzal Khan that the Kufr of this person is established, there is no way he will change his path, so he should be killed and there is no need of Tahqeeq (verification). All the scholars signed the Fatwa to kill the Shaykh except Mulla Mashki, so afterwards they decided to lash him, cut his beard and moustache and parade him in the city on a donkey as a punishment.

It is written in “Tarikh Ahlul Hadith” of Molana Ibrahim Meer As-Sialkoti p 436: “With the will of Ameer Afzal Khan, they agreed to give a Fatwa of lashing him and riding him on a donkey in the city. So he and his 3 sons were paraded in the city and they were beaten, and when these unjust oppressors finished this humiliating punishment, they imprisoned him with his sons for 2 years.”

After 2 years, when they were freed, Ameer Afzal Khan had died, and his son Ameer A’zam Khan ordered them to be exiled, so the Shaykh left for Peshawar, and after few days he went to Amristsar in Punjab. After 15 years of trials and exiles, he decided to remain for good in Amritsar where he taught in peace.

Teaching in Amritsar

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi established in Amritsar “Madrasah Al-Ghaznawiyah” where he and his 3 sons Abdullah, Muhammad and Abdul Jabbar taught, as well as Shaykh Muhammad Husayn Al-Batalwi. Many people came to study there and the Shaykh’s fame increased in all India.

Afterwards ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi established 3 more centers: one in Delhi, one in Bhopal and one in Patna.

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi also wrote and translated many books and epistles that he would publish and distribute for free (“Sawanih Umri” p 22)

The Shaykh’s Zuhd

Ghulam Rasul Al-Qal’awi said: “Molana ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi would do many efforts particularly in two things: one to pray with humility and concentration, and second doing Tadabbur of the speech of Allah.”

Also Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi was told to be Mustajab Ad-Da’wah, meaning many of his invocations would be answered.

It is reported by Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi that once when his father was busy in Zikr, one could heard the walls of the Masjid saying: La ilaha ila Allah. (Dawud Al-Ghaznawi p 16)

Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi said that his father would invoke a lot for the Muslims and also for disbelievers that Allah guides them to Islam, and he heard him many times saying: “The people from whose hands I received so many harms, I forgive them all, so on the day of judgment none of them get caught by Allah (Ta’ala) because of me.” (“Sawanih Umri” p 20)

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi’s main students:

Hafiz Abu Muhammad Ibrahim Aarwi

Molana Rafee’udin Shakranwi Al-Bahari

Qadhi Tala Muhammad Khan Al-Peshawri

Qadhi Abdul Wahid Khanpuri

Molana Muhiyudin ‘AbdurRahman Al-Lakhwi

Hafiz ‘Abdul Mannan Al-Wazeerabadi

Molana Ghulam Nabi Ar-Rabbani As-Suhadrawi

Hafiz Muhammad Ramadhan Al-Peshawri

Molana ‘Abdul Wahhab Sadr Ad-Dehlawi

Qadhi Abu ‘Abdillah Muhammad Khanpuri

His death and scholar’s praise of him

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi passed away on 15 Rabee ul Awwal 1298 (1879) in Amristsar.

Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi said about him: “There were two ‘Abdullah who came in my lessons: one ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi and the second ‘Abdullah Al-Ghazipuri”, meaning that he was among his most outstanding students.

Nawab Siddiq Hasan Khan said about him: “What a great person Sayid ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi was! He gathered the knowledge of Hadith and the knowledge of Batin according to the Sunnah. He faced many harm from the innovators of his country for propagating the truth. He was very devoted to worship and remembrance (of Allah). He did great work to propagate the knowledge of Hadith and imitation of the Sunnah. I have not seen anyone similar to him in this chapter among the people of his time. He was a tool to propagate Hadith and eradicate the innovations. In Usul and Furu’, he was upon the way of the Salaf As-Salihin.” (“Taqsar min Tazkar Juyud Al-Ahrar” p 194)

Shamsul Haq Al-‘Azeemabadi wrote about him in his “Ghayat Al-Maqsud” (1/12): “He was in all conditions drowned in the remembrance of Allah (‘Azza wa Jalla) until his meat, bones, veins, hair and all his body was turned towards Allah (Ta’ala), vanished (Fanian) in the remembrance of Him (‘Azza wa Jalla)”

Habeebullah Al-Qandahari said about him: “I knew that Allah would do your Tarbiyah and you don’t need me. Allah will never waste you” (“Ahlul Hadith” Amritsar December 1918)

Sayid Abdul Hay Al-Hasani An-Nadwi Al-Hanafi wrote in his “Nuzhah Al-Khawatir vol 7 p 302-303: “The Shaykh, Imam, scholar Muhadith ‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad Shareef Al-Ghaznawi, Shaykh Muhammad A’zam (his original name) Az-Zahid Al-Mujahid walking in the desire of Allah, preferring His satisfaction over his self, his family, wealth and country. He had a prestigious rank and great cognizance.”

His family

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi had 12 sons and 15 daughters. His sons are in order:

Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi

Muhammad Al-Ghaznawi

Ahmad Al-Ghaznawi

Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi

Abdul Wahid Al-Ghaznawi

‘AbdurRahman Al-Ghaznawi

‘AbudSattar Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdul Qayum Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdul Azeez Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdul Hay Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdul Quddus Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdur Raheem Al-Ghaznawi

Abdullah ibn ‘Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi

Abdullah ibn Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi, the eldest of the Shaykh’s sons, took the charge of Madrasah Al-Ghaznawiyah after the death of his father. He learned Hadith from Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi as well. He passed away two years after his father in 1300H.

Muhammad ibn ‘Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi

Muhammad ibn ‘Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi, the second of the Shaykh’s son, also learned Hadith from Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi. Molana Sayid Abdul Hay Al-Hasani An-Nadwi writes in “Nuzha Al-Khawatir v 7 p 417: “Everyone agrees on his virtues, piety, religiosity and honesty.” He also wrote on the same page: “He is among those who faced great harm in the way of Allah, he was terrorized just for supporting the Sunnah of the Messenger (saw).”

Muhammad ibn ‘Abdillah wrote a Hashiyah to the Tafseer “Jami’ Al-Bayan” which was published and distributed freely. Molanan Badr uz Zaman Muhammad Shafee’ An-Nepali said: “He published “Al-Musawwa” of Shah Waliyullah Ad-Dehlawi in 1293, and it was the first publication of this book, and with this he published many translations of the Quran and books of Hadith and books related to Hadith.” (Shaykh Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi p 127).

Muhammad ibn Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi passed away two years before the death of his father in 1296. The famous poet Muhammad Iqbal mentioned in a poem in “Nuqush Makateeb n 303 that Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi hearing the death of his son during a lesson stopped for a minute, recited a poem in Persian telling his satisfaction of Allah’s decree and then carried on his lesson.

‘Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi

After the death of Abdullah ibn ‘Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi, Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi took in charge the Madrasah Al-Ghaznawiyah. He also learned Hadith from Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi and faced like his two elder brothers hardships in Afghanistan. Because the students of Madrasah Al-Ghaznawiyah increased considerably, people were also coming from outside the country to study there, Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi turned Madrasah Al-Ghaznawiyah in a full Dar Al-‘Ulum named “Dar Al-‘Ulum Taqwiyah Al-Islam” in 1902/1319.

This Dar Al-‘Ulum carried on in Amritsar up to 1947, and among its famous teachers: Sayid Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi, AbdurRaheem Al-Ghaznawi, Sufi Abdul Haq Al-Ghaznawi, Ma’sum Ali Al-Hazarwi, Muhammad Husayn Al-Hazarwi, Abdul Ghafoor Al-Ghaznawi, Abu Ishaq Naik Muhammad, Sayid Muhammad Dawud Al-Ghaznawi, ‘Abdullah Al-Bhujiyani

Many great scholars such as Hafiz ‘Abdullah Ar-Ropuri, Hafiz Muhammad Al-Gondalwi, Abdul Kareem Al-Fayrozpuri, Faqeerullah Al-Madarasi, Hakeem Ubayd Ar-Rahman Ad-Dehlawi, Isma’eel As-Salafi, Hakeem ‘AbdurRahman. Abu Yahya Imam Khan Ash-Shahrawi studied there.

When Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi passed away in 1331, Abdul Wahid Al-Ghaznawi took charge of “Dar Al-‘Ulum Taqwiyah Al-Islam” and when he passed away in 1930, Sayid Muhammad Dawud ibn Abdil Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi took it in charge. After the creation of Pakistan, Dawud Al-Ghaznawi transferred “Dar Al-‘Ulum Taqwiyah Al-Islam” to Lahore on Shish Mahal rd, where it is still running today.

Molana Sayid Abdul Hay Al-Hasani An-Nadwi write in “Nuzhah Al-Khawatir” v 8 p 218-219 about Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi: “He was a great scholar and Muhadith, all the people of his time agreed on his rank, status and sainthood…He was very intelligent, was reading a lot, and had great share of deep understanding and Firasah. He was very busy in teaching Quran and Hadith in Amritsar, and he would stay far away from this world and its people. He would be devoted to worship and calling the creation to the worship of Allah…I have visited him many times in Amritsar and I saw him being upon the way of the Salaf As-Salihin. He was among the Ulama Ar-Rabbani, when giving a Fatwa he would not stick to a particular Madhab but he would not spread bad opinion on the Mujtahid Imams rather would always mention them with good.”

Sayid Abul Hasan An-Nadwi wrote in “Parane Charagh” p 275-276: “In my youth, among the great scholars having true Aqeedah and following the Sunnah that came to my ears and for whom I had great respect, there was Molana Sayid ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi and his noble successor Molana Sayid ‘Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi. These great personalities were residing in Ghazni but they were punished by Afzal Khan, the Ameer of Kabul for the crime of having a pure Aqeedah of Tawheed and complete imitation of the Sunnah and the Salaf, and in his rule they had to abandon their land. Following the people about whom the verse: “Those who have been expelled from their homes unjustly only because they said: "Our Lord is Allah."” (Al-Hajj : 40) was revealed, he went with his family to Amritsar, where he settled.

He was a great personality, caller to Allah, Tawheed, Sunnah, a propagator of Quran and Hadith. The people of his region and people of Nazar of his time agreed on his sainthood. The author of “Nuzhah Al-Khawatir” mentioned about him: “He had a prestigious rank and great cognizance.” He wrote about him that he was a cause of Barakah for his time and a cause of prestige for India. He passed away at the end of the 13 century (1298).

His son Molana Sayid ‘Abdul Jabbar Al-Jabbar walked upon the footsteps of his father. He had the same zeal for propagating Tawheed and Sunnah, the same Zuhd, Tawakkul, the same passion to propagate Quran and Hadith. The author of “Nuzhah Al-Khawatir” mentioned about him: “All the people of his time agreed on his rank, status and sainthood.” He passed away in 1331 in Amritsar…

When the annual conference of Nadwah Al-Ulama occurred in Amritsar in 1902/1320, all scholars from different region of India gathered. The Nawab of Sadr Yaar Jang, Molana Habeeb Ar-Rahman Ash-Sharwani narrated that ‘Allamah Shibli attended there one of his (Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi) lecture, and it had a great effect on him and he said: “When this person recites the speech of Allah on his tongue, I have the uncontrolled (be Ikhtiyar) desire to put my head on his foot.” End of Abul Hasan An-Nadwi speech

Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi was famous for his dispute with Shaykh Al-Islam Thanaullah Al-Amritsari regarding the Taweel of the attributes of Allah and his denial of Karamat, and he wrote a book against him called "Al-Arbaeen fi anna Thanaullah laysa ala madhab al-Muhaditheen”. After his death, his student Hafiz Abdullah Ar-Ropuri translated this book into Arabic and sent it to King Abdul Aziz ibn Saud, who was very close to the Ghaznawi family.

King ‘Abdul Aziz formed a committee of scholars with Shaykh Abdul Lateef Aal Shaykh, Shaykh Bahjat Al-Beetar Ash-Shami, Shaykh Rasheed Rida Al-Misri, ‘Abdullah ibn Hasan Imam of Makkah, Shaykh Abdullah Al-Bulayhid, chief justice of Hijaz.

Shaykh Abdul Wahid Al-Ghaznawi appeared with Shaykh Thanaullah Al-Amritsari in this committee. After this, Shaykh Thanaullah Al-Amritsari stopped doing Taweel of Allah’s attributes and stopped his denial of Karamat, rather established them according to the Madhab of the Salaf. King ‘Abdul ‘Aziz himself read the resolution of the committee.

Hafiz Abdul Jabbar Al-Ghaznawi books:

“Sabeel An-Najat if Mubayanah Ar-Rab ‘anil Makhluqat” (Urdu, a book on Allah being separate from the creation)

“’Aqeedah Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah fi masalah Al-Istiwa wal Mubayanah” (Arabic, on the topic of Allah being above His throne and separate from the creation)

“Fatawa Al-Ghaznawiyah” (Urdu)

“Al-Majmu’ah Al-Fatawa” (Urdu)

"Al-Arbaeen fi anna Thanaullah laysa ala madhab al-Muhaditheen” Urdu, a book in which he gathered 40 proofs showing that Shaykh Al-Islam Thanaullah Al-Amritsari was not upon the way of the Muhadiths)

“Sawanih ‘Umri Molana Sayid ‘Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi” (urdu, biography of his father)

‘Abdul Wahid Al-Ghaznawi

‘Abdul Wahid Al-Ghaznawi, who studied under Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi and his younger brother ‘Abdur Raheem Al-Ghaznawi upon the request of Sultan ‘AbdurRahman father of King Abdul Aziz Aal Saud taught Hadith to members of Aal Saud family for 5 years during the Aal Saud exile in Kuwait, and during this period many scholars of Najd also studied books of Hadith under them. Thus King Abdul Aziz Aal Saud and his father both studied Hadith from these two members of the Ghaznawi family, and afterwards, they always honored the Ghaznawi family.

Among Abdullah Al-Ghaznawi famous grand sons:

Abdul Awwal ibn Muhammad ibn Abdilah Al-Ghaznawi. He also studied under Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi. He translated Sahih al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, Mishkat Al-Masabih and Riyad As-Salihin in Urdu.

Abdul Ghafoor ibn Muhammad ibn Abdillah Al-Ghaznawi. He also studied under Mian Nazeer Husayn Ad-Dehlawi. He was among the teachers of Hafiz Muhammad Al-Gondalwi and Isma’eel As-Salafi.

Isma’eel ibn Abdil Wahid Al-Ghaznawi. When King Abdul Aziz called an Islamic conference in 1926 in Makkah, he was one of the four Ahlul Hadith scholars from all Ahlul Hadith conference (the 3 others were his father, Thanaullah Al-Amritsari and Hameedulah Ad-Dehlawi). Afterwards, King Abdul Aziz appointed him for supervision of Hajj and this post was similar to that of a minister. He wrote many books such as “Jalalah Al-Malak ibn Su’ud” in which he detailed the merits of king Abdul Aziz Aal Saud, “Istiqlal Hijaz” in which he refuted objections against King Abdul Aziz after his conquest of Hijaz in 1925 and “Islahat Hijaz” in which he showed what the things rectified by King Abdul ‘Aziz after conquering Hijaz. He also translated “Al-Hadiyah As-Sanniyah” of Allamah Sulayman ibn Sahman in Urdu.


Biography of Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi

Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi was born in 1895 in Amritsar. He acquired knowledge from his father Shaykh Sayid AbdulJabbar Ghaznawi and his cousin Sayid Abdul Awwal Ghaznawi, and after went to Delhi were he studied from Shaykh Sayf Ar-Rahman Kabuli and Hafiz Abdullah Ghazipuri.

 After completing his studies and learning Hadith from Hafiz Abdullah Ghazipuri, Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi returned to Amritsar where he started to teach in his familial Madrasah Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiyatul Islam Amritsar.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi’s political activities

In 1919 Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi went with his cousin Shaykh Isma’eel Ghaznawi to a political conference in Amritsar and while he was on the way and stopped at a food shop, General Dize ordered his troops to shoot at the participants of the conference, among whom were Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs, and this incident lead Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi to be fully involved in politics. He started to give many speeches against the British and he was an excellent orator encouraging people to work for independence.

In 1919 when Majlis Khilafat was established, Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi helped it and was one of its active members. In 1921 Jam’iyah Ullama Hind was founded and Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was among its founders and member of its executive body (Majlis Aamilah) and for a long time its vice President (Naib Sadar).

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi speeches against British colonialism were very powerful and it lead to the Shaykh’s arrest and he was imprisoned for 3 years in Mianwali jail, which only increased his motivation and resolution. In 1925 he was arrested again and remained for 2 years in jail and in 1927 he participated in the boycott movement of Simon commission and was arrested for a third time and was freed 2 years later.

In 1929 with the help of Sayid Ataullah Shah Bukhari, he founded Majlis Ahrar and he was elected as its general secretary. He made this movement very active and it played in a great role when Kashmir movement started in 1932 and Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was arrested again.

In 1942 Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi joined the Congress when it started its movement for independence and was elected as the president of Punjab committee of Congress and was elected under the ticket of Congress in Punjab assembly.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi left the Congress on 2nd August 1946 because of Hindus bigotry. After he joined Muslim League and travelled different cities in which he exposed the intents of British and Hindus. Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi had met Qaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and was very impressed by his Firasah and political vision as mentioned by Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi on p 249 of his book “Dawood Ghaznawi”.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi occupied the following positions in different times:

1) Secretary General of Punjab Khilafat Committee

2) Secretary General of Majlis Ahrar Hind

3) Vice President of Jam’iyah Ullama Hind

4) President of Punjab Committee of Congress

5) Director of Muslim league Tahreek in Khidr Wazarat

6) General Secretary of Qaim Kardah Majlis Amal of Qadiyani Tahreek in 1953

7) President of Markazi Jam’iyat Ahl e Hadith Maghrabi Pakistan.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi played a leading role in independence and faced hardships of jail for around 10 years in his life. In Pakistan, Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was elected in Punjab assembly in 1951 with Muslim League Ticket.

In 1960 General Ayoob Khan established a commission to establish a constitution for Pakistan and this commission asked 40 questions sent to different leaders. Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi contacted Shaykh Mawdudi and other scholars and on 5-6 May 1960 a sitting in Jamiyah Ashrafiyah Nila Gunban happened between scholars of all schools of thoughts, and it was decided that Shaykh Mawdudi and Shaykh Ghaznawi would write replies in which they will support a parliamentary system and democratic principles (as mentioned by Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi in “Dawood Ghaznawi” p 268)

Tanzeem of Jama’at Ahl e Hadith in India then in Pakistan:

In December 1906, All Ahl e Hadith India Conference was established, Hafiz Abdullah Ghazipuri was selected as president and Shaykh Thanaullah Amritsari as secretary general. Afterwards its executive body was formed formally containing the following scholars from Punjab: Shaykh Sulaiman Mansurpuri, Shaykh Ibraheem Meer Sialkoti, Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi, Shaykh Isma’eel Salafi, Shaykh Haneef Nadwi.

After the creation of Pakistan, a group of pre-eminent Ahl e Hadith scholars held an historical gathering on the 24 July of 1948 in the University Dar Al-‘Ulum Taqwiyatul Islam on Shish Maal Rd in Lahore, establishing the Markazi Jami’yah Ahlul Hadith Maghrabi Pakistan.

Among the noble scholars who were present in this gathering: Shaykh Muhammad Ibrahim Meer Sialkoti, Hafiz ‘Abdullah Ropuri, Hafiz Muhammad Gondalwi, Shaykh Muhammad Isma’eel Salafi, Shaykh Muhiyudin Ahmad Qasuri, Shaykh Muhammad Ali Qasuri, Shaykh AbdulMajeed Sohadrawi, Shaykh Zafar Iqbal, Shaykh Muhammad Yunus Dehlawi, Shaykh Abu Sa’id Sharfudin Dehlawi, Shaykh As-Sayid Muhammad Dawud Ghaznawi, Shaykh As-Sayid Muhammad Isma’eel Ghaznawi, Shaykh Muhammad ‘Ataullah Haneef Bhujiyani, Shaykh Muhammad Haneef Nadwi and Shaykh Mu’eenudin Lakhvi.

Shaykh Muhammad Ibrahim Meer Sialkoti was presiding this gathering and in it, it was decided that the president of this Jam’iyah would be Shaykh As-Sayid Muhammad Dawud Al-Ghaznawi, and the Nazim Al-‘Ala (Secretary General) would be professor ‘Abdul Qayum, but professor ‘Abdul Qayum had to resign in May 1949 as he was a civil servant. Shaykh Muhammad Isma’eel Salafi was nominated next Secretary General.

Transfer of Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiytul Islam to Lahore:

After the partition of India and creation of Pakistan, Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi moved his familial Madrasah from Amritsar to Lahore in Shish Maal Road, which is carrying on today. After Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi’s death, his son Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi became the principal and after his death, Shaykh Muhammad Yahya Ghaznawi became the principal.

Role in establishing Jamiyah Salafiyah:

On 3-4 April 1955 after the annual Ahl e Hadith conference presided by Shaykh Isam’eel Ghaznawi, a decision was taken to establish a Dar Al-Uloom and its name was decided as “Jami’ah Salafiyah” as suggested by Shaykh Haneef Nadwi. This Jamiyah first started in Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiyatul Islam and it was transferred in 1957 to Faisalabad.

On 21 June 1956, Jamiyah Salafiyah started in Madrasah Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiyatul Islam, and among the teachers Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was teaching Uloom Al-Quran, Shaykh Isma’eel Salafi was teaching Uloom Al-Hadith, Shaykh Attaullah Haneef Bhujiyani teaching Hadith, Shaykh Muhammad Haneef Nadwi was teaching Arabic literature.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was since 1955 the president of Jamiyah Salafiyah Committee but as he was ill frequently in 1961, Shaykh Ismaeel Salafi appointed Mian Fazl Al-Haqq as president of Jamiyah Salafiyah committee in 1961.

Madeenah University:

In May 1962 King Su’ud ibn Abdil Aziz invited through his ambassador Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi for the inauguration of Madeenah University and he was selected to be a member of the Shurah Council of Madeenah University. Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi left Lahore on 7 May 1962, performed Hajj first and returned to Lahore on 15 June 1962.

Shaykh Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi books:

1) Nukhbatul Ahadith
2) Namaz Mutarjam ma'a Ad'iyah Masnoonah
3) Kiya 8 rak'at Taraweeh Bid'at he?
4) Eed Al-Adha or us ke Masail
5) Masalah Tawheed.
6) Uswah Hasanah
7) Qurbani ki Shar'i Haythiyat

Shaykh Muhammad Haneef Yazdani published 24 Maqalat of Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi taken mostly from his "Akhbar Tawheed" in the form of a book. The detail of these Maqalat are:

1) Khutbah Sadarat Maghrabi Pakistan Ahle Hadith Conference March 1958
2) Tabsirah on Muslim Family Law ordinance 1961
3) Islam or Qadiyaniyat
4) Islami Mu'asharah ke 3 Ajza
5) Uloom wa Ma'arif Al-Quran.
6) Ihtiram Aimah
7) Ruwayat e Hilal.
8) Ramadhan Mubarak, Nuzul Quran Majeed ki Yadgar.
9) Kiya 8 Rak'at taraweeh Bid'at he?
10) Sadaqah Al-Fitr ke masail
11) Alageer Tahreek Islam ka Markaz.
12) Qurbani ki Rooh
13) Qurbani Adwar Salaf mein
14) Qurbani Ahkam wa Masail
15) Uswah Hasanah.
16) Jama'at Ahl e Hadith ka Aqidah wa Nasbul Ayn
17) Qabar Prasti Dunya mein Kyunkar pehli
18) Shaykh Al-Islam wal Muslimeen Imam Ibn Taymiyah ki Seerat wa Hayat ka ek aham Baab
19) Shaykh Al-Islam Muhammad ibn AbdilWahab Najdi or Tahreek Islah e Arab.
20) 1857 Jang Azadi ya Ghadar
21) Mawlood Murawaj ki Shar'i haythiyat.
22) Jihad fi Sabeel illah
23) Kiya Nazar manana Jaiz he/ kiya Nazar puri karna zaruri he?
24) Tarikh Jam' Ahadith Rasool Kareem (saw)

Also Hafiz Shahid Mahmood is working in his Silsilah of Fatawa of Ullama Hadith on the Fatawa of the Ghaznawi Family with Dar Abi Tayib (Shaykh Arif Javed Muhammadi)


Since 1961 Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was frequently ill and he had heart pains in Madeenah in 1962 when he was invited there by King Su’ud for the inauguration of Madeenah University. After treatment in Madeenah, he returned to Lahore but was very weak afterwards and would spend his last days speaking very little and spend his time in remembrance of Allah repeating “Rabighfir warham Anta Khayrul Rahimeen”.

He passed away after Fajr on Monday 16 December 1963 after a heart attack. His close friend Shaykh Isma’eel Salafi led the funeral prayer on 17 December in the University Ground at 10am and he was buried in Qabristan Miani Sahib next to his younger brother Hafiz Muhammad Sulayman Ghaznawi who had passed away 3 years before.

Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi had married the daughter of Shaykh Abdul Awwal Ghaznawi and had with her 2 sons Umar Farooq Ghaznawi and Abu Bakr Ghaznawi and one daughter. After his first wife passed away in 1945, he remarried again and had 6 children from his second wife, 2 sons: Yahya Ghaznawi and Ahmad Ghaznawi and 4 daughters.

Scholars praise of him:

Shaykh Muhammad Ataullah Haneef wrote about Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi:

"I saw Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi first in Amritsar and had the honour to meet him, and after I met him many times in Delhi. I saw his library in Amritsar which had excellent books of Tafsir, Hadith, Fiqh, Usul Al-Fiqh, Asma wa Rijaal, Tarikh wa Siyar and others. I saw "Tabaqat Al-Hanabilah" there for for the first time.

After the creation of Pakistan, I was very close to Molana (rah). I have not seen such an abstinent, pious and person of knowledge and Baseerah (deep vision). He was very fond of reading and one is astonished that despite spending such a busy life, he would be very fond of reading and studying and acquired such great knowledge. His Library was burnt in Amritsar by Sikhs and he expressed great regret at it all his life, whenever his library would be mentioned to him, he would start crying. He said to me many times that he had gathered these books with great efforts; you cannot imagine how i saved money for it and would buy books with it. Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi read a great extent of books, there was not a book in his library that he did not have a glance at it. Whenever I needed a book, he would talk it straight away from his shelf and when I started to read it, I would see many of his notes on the books"

Shaykh Muhammad Haneef Nadwi said:

“When I met him first, I felt that his speeches were surely amazing, but as for his research and reading, he would not be different to other political leaders, but I became astonish to know that he had had great knowledge of Quran, Hadith, Fiqh in such a manner that would require skills of a Mujtahid. I had the opportunity to see his library many times, and I saw that there was not a main book and a main chapter in it without his written notes on it, especially in Fiqh and in Tafsir, his knowledge was very deep” (“Dawood Ghaznawi” p 41)

Shaykh Muhammad Ishaq Bhatti wrote about Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi:

"The great particularity of Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi was his great magnanimity and large hardheartedness. Despite following a particular Maslak and Fiqh, his heart was free from Ta'asubat (partisanship). He had very good relation with Shaykh Ahmad Ali and said at his death: "Today one of the pillar of the religion fell and I feel such an emptiness in my close friends that cannot be filled". Shaykh Dawood had a good friendship with Mufti Muhammad Hasan Amrtisari and he would go and meet him every week or after 10 days…Shaykh Ghazanwi had a great respect for Sayid Mawdudi and he would respect his efforts globally (majmu'i itibar se) and would appreciate them" ("Dawood Ghaznawi" p 144-145)

Sayid Abu Bakr Ghaznawi wrote about his father:

"He had a clear Maslak and he with certainty and fervour would spread his Maslak, but he would not mock the beliefs and views of others, and would present with respect to scholars of all groups" ("Dawood Ghaznawi" p 289)

Shaykh Sayid Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi wrote:

“By the death of Sayid Dawood Ghaznawi a prestigious chair has been emptied not only for the Ghaznawi family and for the Ahl e Hadith Jama’at but in the religious circles of the subcontinent and its first ranks, and it is not easy to be on such a prestigious chair with the Shaykh’s magnanimity, well balanced vision, large connections, great efforts, his religious fervour, beliefs, and his excellence and staying firm (Istiqamah) in his Maslak, with his great overall respect of the Salaf, his family’s fervour and spiritual efforts, all these characteristics are rarely found in others. He left for his family and successors in particular and for his Jama’at in general such an example which will be difficult to be followed but it is essential that it is followed. May Allah (Ta’ala) give Tawfeeq to his successors” (“Dawood Ghaznawi” p 27)

Biography of Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi

Birth and studies

Shaykh Sayid Abu Bakr Ghaznawi was born in 1927 in Amritsar and he learned religious sciences from his father Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi, and obtained degrees of MA Islamiyat, MA Arabic and LLB. He also took religious sciences from Shaykh Shareefullah Khan, Shaykh Muhammad Abduh, and Shaykh Muhammad Ataullah Haneef Bhujiyani.

After completing his studies, he became Professor at Islamiyah College in Lahore, and after Engineering University Lahore in department of Islamiyat, and after some time he became chancellor of Islamiyah University Bahawalpur.

On 16 September 1963 his father Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi who was the Ameer of Markazi Jamiat Ahl e Hadith Maghrabi Pakistan, passed away and Shaykh Isma'eel Salafi was appointed as the new Ameer and Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi as the new secretary general, but he could not carry for long time and was replaced by Mian Fazal Haqq.

After the death of his father, he occupied his chair of Hadith in Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiatul Islam Lahore and he wrote:

"My father (rah) passed away on 16 September 1963 and the responsibility of Dar Al-Uloom was conferred to this weak person, and the writer because of his absence of affluence does not consider himself qualified to sit on the chair of Sayid Abdullah Ghaznavi and Imam Abdul Jabbar Ghaznavi, but I accepted this responsibility so the emanation of Kitab and Sunnah that these elders spread and which is continuous since a long time carries on, (and he wrote the poem): "Resemble people if you cannot be similar to them, as resemblance of noble people is a nobility" ("Dawood Ghaznawi" p 456)

Shaykh Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi statements:

Shaykh Abu Bakr Ghaznawi had a great circle of friends in the subcontinent, and he had friendship with Shaykh Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi. Shaykh Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi wrote:

"After the partition of the country, I went once to Lahore and our noble Molana Attaullah Haneef and his colleagues established a gathering in my honour in Jamiah Salafiyah and they gathered the nobles of their Jamaat and nobles from Nadwah, and i was extremely surprised to see that they conferred an award to me and Shaykh Dawood Ghaznavi who is among rank of my teachers and elders read himself (the speech), and this was their extreme humility and this shows his links to Sayid Sahib, his family and Maslak. In 1962 the year in which Rabitah Alam Islami was established, he came for Hajj and participated in the gathering of Rabitah, and after being appointed as member, I had the opportunity to meet him many times in his hotel in Madeenah, and their he received by Allah's grace medical treatment for heart pain and he returned safely to Lahore and this was my last meeting with him.

During my stay in Lahore, I came to know his son Molana Sayid Abu Bakr Ghaznawi, he was Professor of Arabic at the time probably in Islamiyah College and he had a great taste for Arabic literature, he had the qualities of his family and great skills, taste for the religion, and was preoccupied with research for Allah and improving his internal person and purify his condition. I gave him directly or through someone some of my Arabic books and he expressed great joy in reading them amd I felt he had authentic taste for Arabic literature…

I carried on sending my Arabic books to him and I considered him among the people of Nazar an taste, and it is a Jamati or maybe international weakness of authors and writers that they wish that their writings and traces of their pens be read by the people of Nazar and taste. I translated the book "Taqwiyatul Iman" of Shaykh Isma'el Shaheed into Arabic under the name "Risalah At-Tawheed" so I sent it to him as he is a holder and caller to this Maslak, and his book about the mention of his noble father has been published in which he incorporated one of my article, and I received this book (about biography of his father Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi) with a letter on which there was unfortunately no date, but it was written from Dar Al-Uloom Taqwiyatul Islam Lahore known as Madrasah Salafiyah Sish Mahl Road Lahore, and the letter said:

"Since many years my soul has been searching you and i desire to meet you, I had maybe sent one or two letters to Rabitah Alam Islami, I wanted to meet you for knowledge and spiritual benefits, what plan shall I do to meet you? Do you have a program to visit Pakistan soon?

I do not receive the magazines of Al-Ba'th Al-Islami Rabitah Alam Islami and I have the desire to read them. I have written a book about my father (rah) in the near present in which I incorporated one of your article, and I am sending you a copy of it, please accept it. If you find it beneficial then please write a review about it in Al-Ba'th Al-Islami, and I received your book "Risalah At-Tawheed" and the translation is very beautiful and of great quality, I am thankful for the gift.

Niyaz Mand, Sayid Abu Bakr Ghaznawi"

("Parane Chiragh" of Shaykh Abu Hasan Ali Nadwi 2/279 and after)

His death

Shaykh Sayid Abu Bakr Ghaznawi passed away on 16 April 1976 in a traffic accident in London, and his body arrived in Lahore 4 days later where he was buried next to his father Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi, may Allah have mercy on them!

His writings: all of his books have been published by Maktabah Ghaznawiyah Shish Mahl Road:

1) Haqiqat Zikr Ilahi
2) Islam or Adab Muasharat
3) Islam mein Gardish Dolat
4) Asr Hadhir mein Ustaz or Shagird ka Rishtah
5) Islami Riyasat ke chand na gazeer Taqadhe
6) Kitabat Hadith 'Ahd Nabawi (saw) mein
7) Khutbat Jihad
8) Waqi'ah Kerbala
9) Is Duniya mein Allah ka Qanoon Jaza wa Saza
10) Quran e Majeed ke Suwari or Ma'nawi Mahasain (Ek Ijmali Jaaizah)
11) Muhammadi Inqilab ke chand Khad o Khal
12) Sayidi wa Abi (Molana Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi rah)

This last book "Saydi wa Abi" was 464 pages and contains the biography and the religious and political works of Shaykh Sayid Muhammad Dawood Ghaznawi.

214 pages of the book are essays and opinions of 22 famous scholars about Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi among whom: Shaykh Muhiudin Ahmad Qasuri, Shaykh sayid Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi, Shaykh Ghulam Rasool Mehr, Shaykh Muhammad Haneef Nadwi, Dr Sayid Abdullah, Shorash Kashmiri, Shaykh Rais Ahmad Ja'fari, Shaykh Muhammad Ishaq Bhatti and other scholars.

The rest of the book from p 214 to 464 are about the biographie of Shaykh Dawood Ghaznawi with as well at the beginning a mention of his grand father Shaykh Sayid Abdul Jabbar Ghaznawi and great Grand father Shaykh Sayid Abdullah Ghaznawi. This book was first published in 1974.


Sources: Adapted from “Ghaznawi Khandan” of ‘AbdurRasheed ‘Iraqee, and others