In the name of Allah, most merciful, most Benevolent.The towering personality of Muhi-us-Sunnah Hazrat Maulana Shah Abrar-ul-Haq Sahab(RA) was, particularly for Muslims of North India, a shade of mercy and minaret of light, that provided a thick shade to the travelers of the Method and the humanity scorched by the heat of waywardness, his whole life illuminated knowledge and art, thought and action, education and training, mysticism and spirituality, worships and incantations together with many other corners of Islamic affairs. After the adoption of final journey by a large number of high caliber Elders of this area, in last few years like Hazrat Maulana Syed Abul Hasan Ali Nadawi (RA), Hazrat Qari Siddique Ahmad Bandawi (RA), Mufti Mehmood Hasan Gangohi (RA), Mufti Muzaffar Husain Saharanpuri (RA), one after another, like the beads of a rosary (tasbih) the personality of Muhi-us -Sunnah had become the last reference and the support in the field of mysticism and method, correction and training where the fans from all over the country used to quench their thirst, both intellectual and spiritual. Regretfully, after his demise, this spiritual support too is lost.
Though from the Exalted Being of Allah Most High no period of time remains vacant from the reformers for
guidance of humanity, therefore no doubt the work of correction and training will continue and even after being abandoned by thousands of nightingales this garden will not be deserted but who will bring the personality that is bearer of acceptability (among the people) and affection (for the people), epitome of scholarly dignity, announcer, declarer, demand-er and follower of Sunnah, opponent of deviations and a corrector, full of Prophet (PBUH)'s love, herald of Relation with Allah and countless combined properties like Muhi-us-Sunnah? Particularly after him we will not get any one who had benefited directly from and had the seal of getting the training in the Thanwi-court.
Hazrat’s home place was relatively unknown district Hardoi of the state of Uttar Pradesh (in India). In past innumerable towns of this place have produced many outstanding personalities. Among them the town of Bilgram single handedly had lit the lamps of knowledge and blessings, history and literature and a whole series of scholars, intellectuals and writers belongs to this town. Among them a prominent student of Shah Waliullah, writer of Crown of Bride (Taj-ul-Uroos)-a compilation of famous explanation of Imam Ghazali’s book Revival of Religious Knowledge (Ahya) and a high level scholar of his times, a Traditionist and dictionary compiler Allama Syed Murtaza Zubedi Bilgrami (RA) are specially on the top of the list. About the former the famous author of modern times Hazrat Maulana Syed Abul Hasan Nadwi (RA) used to say that in my knowledge no dictionary has such a detailed explanation the way Crown of Bride is the explanation of Qamoos. This book was weighed in god in the life time of the author and prominent rulers and kings invited him to their countries and got certificates from him. In the same town the writer of tens of books like Subhat-ul-Marjan Ghulam Ali Azad Bilgrami and translator of Gustawli’s famous books Arab Civilization and Indian Civilization Syed Ali BIlgrami too were born. Apart from Bilgram-the locality of pious people, this district has the towns like Sandila, Shahabad and Gopamau to which some important personalities of history have been associated and this area is not barren still.
But in the immediate past no world level personality of world level actions was born in this whole district. And, like other historical towns, for a long time this whole area remained submerged in religious and intellectual ignominy. And then in the last period when the Generation was in a state of unease Allah Most High gave this glorious land of past the personality of Maulana Shah Abrar-ul-Haq in face of whose achievements the achievements of big people of knowledge and inspiration become dull. And for the first time in history this district got introduced with the name of Hazrat Shah Sahab. So much so that Hardoi that is merely a town and a district became a part of his name. Thus in the religious community of Islam he was remembered as Hazrat Hardoi (RA). Set aside other specialties of Hazrat Shah Sahab (RA) for, from the point of view of capabilities of knowledge he was among the first pass outs of Mazahir-ul-Uloom, Saharanpur and had passed through that hands of the mystical reformer Hazrat Thanwi (RA), the tasks that give him world fame and that introduced him to the continents of Africa, America and Europe, was his revival of Sunnah, that is, reminding Muslims of scores of forgotten Sunnah like correction of several common failings of Prayer Call and and Prayer, intellectual training of generation through seminaries and schools and training of teachers and its practical demonstration. And criticism of objectionable things with courage and fearless attitude and the same things dominated his life in the context of Self Correction and training.
These are few clear and main points that became a speciality of this great personality – for which Hazrat-o- WalaJamiat-e-Shah Waliullah and its President Muhtaram Hazrat Maulana Kalim Siddiqui and the way the basic tenants of Waliullahian thought to connect the Generation to Quran, he spent the whole life in struggle it was his right that Armughan should bring out a special number on his personality with a comprehensive introduction. In this connection it is an insignificant tribute to a benefactor of ours. This contains articles by many of his significant caliphs and the people who benefited by his company. This presentation neither encompasses his total specialities nor it is a step in the direction of complete deliverance of that right. But through it a sketch of Hazrat (RA)’s achievements and a map of his greatness can indeed comes to the fore.
Though less endowed,
The travelers aren’t lax!
(Kam Kosh to hain lekin,
Bejauq nahin rahi)
Wasi Sulaiman Nadwi, Armughan, Combined Issue of July –August, 2005 AC