The Usher to Guidance: Remembering Mufti Faizul Waheed Qasmi

By Aaqib Anjum Aafi

DEATH is inevitable but we wish for certain individuals that they live long.  Allah Ta’ala has kept this emotion by default in everyone. The passing away of scholars like Asir Adrawi, Mufti Abdur Razzaq, Usman Mansurpuri and Nur Alam Khalil Amini had already devastated us and we suddenly heard in this June’s first morning that the great and noble exegete of Qur’ān, who blessed religious gatherings with the deep secrets of Holy Book, Mufti Faizul Waheed was no more. For an instant, I was not able to accept this reality but proclaimed, “Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon”. Mufti Faizul Waheed was among the few scholars of Jammu and Kashmir who are widely acclaimed, but no one stood next to him in the exegesis. He held this genre of knowledge with no person second to him.

A true lover of Allah’s words, he is known to have once said, “The success of everyone is hidden in the Quran”.

Mufti Faizul Waheed was born in Thanamandi’s Dodhasan Bala village, in Rajouri. As a kid of 17 days, he lost his father Maulvi Ghulam Hussain. He studied at a local high school and passed the matriculation exams and then entered in the Persian class at the Madrasa Kashiful Uloom in Thanamanadi. The madrasa was closed eight months later following which he moved to memorize Qur’an with Hafiz Muhammad Sabir, the imam of a Jama Masjid in Rehthal, but could memorize only one chapter there.

In 1978, Mufti Faizul Waheed went on to pursue higher studies in Uttar Pradesh. He enrolled in the Madrasa Talimul Qur’an in Muzaffarnagar and completed memorizing the Holy Qur’an in 1982. He also studied the sciences of Qur’an recitation there and enrolled in the Madrasa Khadimul Islam in Hapur for further education. In Hapur, he studied for two years and then in 1985-86, entered the Darul Uloom Deoband, the top most religious seminary in the Indian subcontinent. He completed his formal studies in 1991 and specialized in Islamic jurisprudence and became a Mufti in 1992. He also studied some courses privately including an MA in Urdu from the Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar University in Agra.

Mufti Faizul Waheed came to Jammu in 1992 and started his teaching career from Madrasa Ashraful Uloom. Few years later, he started the Jamia Markazul Ma’arif in Bathindi, along with his colleagues from the Ashraful Uloom, Qari Jamaluddin and Hafiz Nazir Ahmad, in 1995. They moved to teach in the new institution from 5 October 1995 onwards. Mufti Saheb was slammed with the Public Safety Act in the same year due to some sectarian issues and released after eleven months. He continued to teach the discourses of the Holy Qur’an soon after but was arrested yet again in May 1997 for three years.

During his imprisonment, Mufti Saheb wrote his magnum-opus, the first ever Gojri translation and exegesis of the Qur’an, apart from writing few other booklets. This action of his was a lesson for everyone, as Zaki Kayfi, remarked once:

“sitam se ahle-dil, ahle-wafa ranjur kya honge,

gham unki zindagi hai, gham se wo mafrur kya honge”

Mufti Saheb continued teaching at Jamia Markazul Ma’arif after he was released in August 2000, where he shared gems and memorable details about the Quran. These have stayed alive for everyone to benefit from in the form of books that he wrote like “Sirajum Muneera” (The Shining Lamp, a biography of the Prophet PBUH), “Mareez-o-Mayyat aur Warasat ke ahkam” (The Rules of the Ill, the deceased and Inheritance) and “Paaki ke Masa’il, Qur’an-o-Hadees ki Roshni mai” (The Rules of Purity in the light of Quran and Hadees).

Some blessings are rare and singular — scholars such as Mufti Faizul Waheed are such gifts to communities. Their guidance to knowledge and guidance through knowledge are examples of unparalleled favors from the heavens to people. Jammu and Kashmir has lost the reassuring presence of Mufti Saheb but the everlasting light of his knowledge will continue to illuminate the words of Allah for everyone. What a beautiful legacy!

We ask Allah Ta’ala to accept his noble works and grant him a lofty stage in the Jannah. Aameen!

The author is a Biographical Researcher and Author. Tweets at @AnjumaAqib 

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