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  • GHMC ఎన్నికలు: బ్యాలెట్ పేపర్ ద్వారా ఓటు వేసేటప్పుడు ఇవి పాటించండి 
    గ్రేటర్  హైదరాబాద్ మునిసిపల్ కార్పొరేషన్ ఎన్నికలు ఈవీఎంల ద్వారా కాకుండా బ్యాలెట్ పేపర్ ద్వారా జరుగుతున్న నేపథ్యంలో.. మొదటి సారి బ్యాలెట్ పేపర్ ద్వారా ఓటు వేసేటప్పుడు ఈ జాగ్రత్తలు పాటించండి     The post GHMC ఎన్నికలు: బ్యాలెట్ పేపర్ ద్వారా ఓటు వేసేటప్పుడు ఇవి పాటించండి  appeared first on VSK Telangana.
  • వ్య‌వ‌సాయ చ‌ట్టాల‌తో ఎంతో మేలు : రైతు హ‌ర్షం 
       కేంద్ర ప్ర‌భుత్వం ఇటీవ‌ల తీసుకువ‌చ్చిన నూత‌న వ్య‌వ‌సాయం  చ‌ట్టాల‌ను ఉపసంహరించుకోవాలని డిమాండ్ చేస్తూ పంజాబ్ రైతులు ఆందోళన ప్రారంభించినప్పటికీ, ఈ చట్టాలు తమకు ఎలా ప్రయోజనం చేకూర్చాయో వివరించడానికి అనేక మంది రైతులు ముందుకు వ‌స్తున్నారు. త‌మ‌కు ఎంతో మేలు చేస్తోంద‌ని రైతులు త‌మ హ‌ర్షాన్ని వ్య‌క్తం చేస్తున్నారు. “మహారాష్ట్రలోని ధూలేలోని జితేంద్ర భోజీ అనే రైతు కేంద్ర ప్ర‌భుత్వం ప్ర‌వేశ పెట్టిన నూత‌న వ్య‌వ‌సాయ చ‌ట్టం వ‌ల్ల తాను పొందిన లాభాన్ని గురించి ఒక మీడియా […]
  • ఆంధ్రప్ర‌దేశ్ : నివ‌ర్ బాధితుల‌కు సేవా భార‌తి ‌స‌హాయ‌క చ‌ర్య‌లు
    నివర్ తుఫాను కారణంగా నెల్లూరు గూడూరు మధ్య హైవేలో రోడ్డు దెబ్బతినడంతో రాక‌పోక‌లు నిలిచిపోయాయి. వరదలలో చిక్కుకుపోయిన ప్రయాణికులకు ఆర్.ఎస్.ఎస్ కార్యకర్తలు అండగా నిలిచారు. వారికి అల్పాహారం, బన్ను, బిస్కెట్ ప్యాకెట్ లు, పాలు, టీ ఏర్పాటు చేశారు. నివర్ తుఫాన్ కారణంగా నెల్లూరు, గూడూరు మధ్యలో గూడూరుకు సమీపంగా గల ఆదిశంకర ఇంజనీరింగ్ కాలేజీ వద్ద రహదారి దెబ్బతినడంతో అటు ఇటు వాహనాలు పెద్ద సంఖ్యలో నిలిచిపోయాయి. ఆ వాహనాలలో ఉన్న వృద్ధులు, మహిళలు, చిన్నారులు […]
  • నివ‌ర్ బాధితుల‌కు సేవాభార‌తి ఆధ్వ‌ర్యంలో సేవా కార్యక్ర‌మాలు
    నివ‌ర్ తుఫాను కారణంగా భారీ వర్షాల‌కు త‌మిళ‌నాడులోని చెన్నై, కాంచీపురం, చెంగ్లెపుట్, కడలూరు, పన్రుట్టి, పజవెర్కాడు, పెరంబర్, మదురంతకం, అరకోన్నం, పుదుచ్చేరి ప్రాంతాల్లో వరదలు సంభవించాయి. లోత‌ట్టు ప్రాంతాలు నీట మునిగి అక్క‌డి ప్రజలు అనేక ఇబ్బందులు ఎదుర్కొన్నారు. ఈ నేప‌థ్యంలో త‌‌మిళ‌నాడు సేవాభారతి రాష్ట్ర ప్ర‌భుత్వ‌ సమన్వయంతో సేవా కార్యకలాపాల్లో పాల్గొనాలని నిర్ణయించుకుంది. సేవా భార‌తి కార్య‌క‌ర్త‌లు తుఫాన్ బాధితుల‌కు ఆహారం, నీళ్లు, వైద్య సామాగ్రిని, ఇత‌ర వ‌స్తువుల‌ను పంపిణీ చేశారు. వర్షాల వ‌ల్ల  రోడ్ల‌పై […]
  • ఉత్తర్ ప్రదేశ్ చట్టంలో ఏముంది?
    – కె. సహదేవ్ బలవంతపు మతమార్పిడులను, ముఖ్యంగా వివాహం చేసుకునేందుకు, పాల్పడటాన్ని నిషేధిస్తూ ఉత్తర ప్రదేశ్ ఒక చట్టాన్ని ఆమోదించింది. అయితే ఈ చట్టం పూర్తిగా `లవ్ జిహాద్’ ను దృష్టిలో పెట్టుకుని చేశారని, అసలు లవ్ జిహాద్ కేసులనేవే లేవని కొందరు విమర్శలు మొదలుపెట్టారు. విచిత్రంగా మొత్తం చట్టంలో ఎక్కడా లవ్ జిహాద్ ప్రస్తావనే లేదు. అయినా సామాజిక మాధ్యమాల్లో ఈ విషయమై విపరీతమైన ప్రచారం సాగుతోంది. `భారత్ లో అత్యధిక జనాభా కలిగిన రాష్ట్రంలో […]
  • Everyone has responsibility to make dreams of Dr.B.R Ambedkar come true – Sri Appala Prasad
    Appala Prasad, state convenor of the Samajika Samarasata Vedika, called for the conservation of Our Constitution, which prophesied national unity, national integrity as well as freedom, equality and fraternity. Appala Prasad who was the chief guest at the book launch of ‘Manamu Mana Rajyangamu’ said that all castes should live with Harmony and  everyone has […]
  • “Stop issuing OBC Caste Certificates to Christian Converts”, demands Agnikula Kshatriya Community
    Members of Agnikula Kshatriya community, which is categorised as OBC community in Andhra Pradesh have given a representation to Ms M Sujatha, Tahsildar of Mamidikuduru Mandal, and East Godavari district. In the representation, the community members requested the officials to stop issuing Hindu OBC community certificates to those members of their community who have converted […]
  • భారత రాజ్యాంగ పరిరక్షణకు నడుంకట్టాలి
    జాతీయ సమైక్యత, దేశ అఖండతతో పాటు స్వేచ్ఛ, సమానత్వం, సోదర భావాలను ప్రవచించిన భారత రాజ్యాంగ పరిరక్షణకు నడుంకట్టాలని సామాజిక సమరసతా వేదిక రాష్ట్ర కన్వీనర్ అప్పాల ప్రసాద్ పిలుపునిచ్చారు. ‘మనమూ, మన భారత రాజ్యాంగం’ అను పుస్తక ఆవిష్కరణ సభలో ముఖ్య అతిథిగా విచ్చేసిన అప్పాల ప్రసాద్ జి మాట్లాడుతూ కులాలు ఎన్నున్నా సమైక్యతతో జీవించాలని, డా బి ఆర్ అంబేద్కర్ ఆశించిన కలలు సార్థకం చేయాల్సిన బాధ్యత అందరిపై ఉందని అన్నారు. 200 గ్రామాల్లో […]
  • భారత రాజ్యాంగం హిందూ హృదయం
    వ్యక్తులు, వర్గాల స్వేచ్ఛాయుతమైన సమ్మతిపై ఆధారపడిన ఏ ప్రజాస్వామిక వ్యవస్థ అయినా స్వీయ నాగరకతా విలువలను ప్రతిబింబించాలి. శతాబ్దాలుగా భారత్‌లో విలసిల్లిన సామాజిక, సాంస్కృతిక విలువలు, విధానాలను హిందుత్వంగా సాక్షాత్తు సుప్రీంకోర్టు గుర్తించడం సాధారణమైన విషయం కాదు. ఈ దేశపు సామాజిక, రాజకీయ, ఆర్థిక, ధార్మిక వ్యవస్థకు మూలం హిందుత్వం అని ప్రతి నిత్యం నిర్థారణ అవుతున్నా దానిని కాదనడం సెక్యులరిస్టులమని చెప్పుకునే వారికి అలవాటు. అయితే హిందుత్వపు ప్రాతిపదికను స్వాతంత్య్రోద్యమ నాయకులు అందరూ గుర్తించారు, గౌరవించారు. […]
  • లాక్-డౌన్ నేపథ్యంలో అన్నార్తులకు ఓ యాచ‌కుడి విరాళం
    కష్టాల్లో ఉన్నవారికి సహాయం చేయడానికి కోటీశ్వ‌రుడే కావాల్సిన అవ‌స‌రం లేదు, మాన‌వ‌త్వం ఉంటే చాల‌ని నిరూపించాడు ఓ యాచకుడు. నిత్యం బిక్షాట‌న చేస్తూ తాను సేక‌రించిన సొమ్మును ముఖ్య‌మంత్రి స‌హాయ నిధికి విరాళం ఇచ్చిన ఓ యాచ‌కుడు తన దాతృత్వాన్ని చాటుకున్నాడు. త‌మిళ‌నాడులోని తూత్తుకుడి జిల్లాలోని ఆలంకినారు గ్రామానికి చెందిన వాగబొండ్ పూల్ పాండియన్ (68), ఆర్థికంగా మంచి కుటుంబంలో జన్మించిన‌ప్ప‌టికీ ఇద్దరు కుమారులు ప‌ట్టించుకోక‌పోవ‌డంతో బ‌తుకుదెరువు కోసం ముంబైకి వెళ్లాడు. చదువు లేకపోవడం, బ్రతుకుదెరువు మార్గం […]

Khilafat Movement: The previous hundred years

Dr. Shreerang Godbole

Chapter III 

The Khilafat Movement (1919-1924) was a scripturally ordained movement with a history in India that dates from the time when the first Islamic invader set foot on Indian soil. In modern times, the fixation for the Turkish Ottoman Khalifa amongst Sufis, ulama, middle-class Muslim intelligentsia, Muslim press and common Muslims started at least since the 1830s. The ideological underpinnings of the Khilafat Movement were established over the previous 100 years. The 1857 Uprising was a significant eruption of Islamism, but even so, its ideological foundations were laid down in the eighteenth century. While the 1857 Uprising has been hailed as a War of Independence against the British, what needs to be answered is: Who was to rule India once the War of Independence was won from the British? To the Muslims, the answer was obvious. The British rule was Dar-ul-Harb (lit. abode of war; territory where Islam is not predominant), an irritating interlude in the Dar-ul-Islam (lit. abode of Islam; territory where Islam is predominant) that was Islamic rule which spanned a millennium. Nothing but its restoration could satisfy the Muslims.

The jihadist character of the 1857 Uprising and its connection with the Khilafat Movement has been summed up by Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar thus: “The curious may examine the history of the Mutiny of 1857; and if he does, he will find that, in part, at any rate, it was really a Jihad proclaimed by the Muslims against the British, and that the Mutiny so far as the Muslims were concerned was a recrudescence of revolt which had been fostered by Sayyed Ahmad who preached to the Musalmans for several decades that owing to the occupation of India by the British the country had become a Dar-ul-Harb. The Mutiny was an attempt by the Muslims to reconvert India into a Dar-ul-lslam. A more recent instance was the invasion of India by Afghanistan in 1919. It was engineered by the Musalmans of India who, led by the Khilafatists’ antipathy to the British Government, sought the assistance of Afghanistan to emancipate India”(Pakistan or the Partition of India, B.R. Ambedkar, Thacker and Company Limited, 1945, pp. 288).

Pan-Islamic movements before 1857

As dusk fell on Islamic rule in India, the one man who fanned pan-Islamism was Shah Waliullah (1703-62). He reiterated the doctrine of an elective Khilafat and lay special emphasis on the duty of jihad or holy war against the infidel. His works prepared a whole generation of Islamic scholars in the nineteenth century to defend Islam in India in a situation where Muslims were losing the physical power to do so. He suggested that the less they shared with their non-Muslim neighbours, the better servants of God Indian Muslims would be (The Muslims of British India, P. Hardy, Cambridge University Press, 1972, pp.29, 30). It cannot be overemphasized that in taking the help of their Hindu neighbours, whether in the 1857 Uprising or in the Khilafat Movement, the Muslim leadership was guided by compulsion and not conviction.

The other pioneer of pan-Islamism was Saiyid Ahmad Barelvi (1786-1831), an ex-Pindari freebooter who received the graces of various Sufi orders. He launched a jihad against Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1826. In January 1827, he was declared imam (Supreme Leader) and ba’iya (oath of allegiance, a practice started by Prophet Muhammad) was offered to him. He condemned pilgrimage to Hindu holy places, participation in Hindu holy festivals, consulting Brahmans and consulting astrologers and fortune-tellers. The British correctly gauged that his followers intended the eventual overthrow of British rule (Hardy, ibid, pp. 53-54).

An essential ingredient of pan-Islamism is the exclusion of non-Muslims or their influence on Muslims.  Contemporary with Saiyid Ahmad Barelvi, arose Hajji Shariat-Allah (1781-1840) who started the Faraizi movement in Bengal in 1821. The movement took its name from its emphasis on Quranic duties (faraiz). Rejection of kufr (infidelity) and bida’a (innovation) were among its cardinal principles. His son Dudu Miyan (1819-1862) organized a militant brotherhood of faraizis. Another violent Islamic revivalist movement in Bengal was led by Titu Mir (1782-1831) who enjoined his followers to grow beards and tie their dhotis in a distinctive fashion. The movement was put down by the British by sending native infantry (Hardy, ibid, pp.55-59). All these pan-Islamic or fundamentalist movements sought to purge Indian Muslims of their pre-Islamic Hindu practices that had survived despite centuries of forced conversion.

The British, for their part, had come to realize that the Muslims were a fanatical and irreconcilable community. The strain between the British and the Wahabi Muslims had begun in 1838 when the First Afghan War between the British East India Company and the Emirate of Afghanistan broke out. Not only were the Wahabis encamping in the north-west found to be fighting on the Afghan side, but they were also accused of  subverting the loyalty of some sepoys serving there (The Wahabis in the 1857 Revolt: A Brief Re-appraisal of their role, IqtidarAlam Khan, Social Scientist, Vol. 41, May-June 2013, p.17)

The Jihad of 1857

The differing views of Hindus, Muslims and the British vis-a-vis the 1857 Uprising are summarized by historian Thomas Metcalf thus, “The first sparks of disaffection it was generally agreed, were kindled among the Hindu sepoys who feared an attack upon their caste. But the Muslims then fanned the flames of discontent and placed themselves at the head of the movement, for they saw in these religious grievances the stepping stone to political power. In the British view, it was Muslim intrigue and Muslim leadership that converted a Sepoy Mutiny into a political conspiracy, aimed at the extinction of the British Raj” (The Aftermath of Revolt: India 1857-1870, Princeton, 1965, p 298).

The outbreak of revolts in May-June 1857, by units of the Bengal Army stationed at different places in the Uttar Pradesh and Delhi were accompanied by armed jihadis who were drawn from the Muslim population of the towns. In some cases, as in case of the Gwalior contingent, the leaders were Muslim sepoys. In Allahabad, Lucknow and Gwalior, the leaders of armed jihadis were not Wahabis but in fact Sufis. Some Wahabi leaders were hesitant in joining the 1857 Jihad because they were not convinced of the doctrinal validity of engaging the English in an armed conflict where Hindu chiefs and leaders of sepoys would be their allies and not clients (IqtidarAlam Khan, ibid, pp.18, 19).

After the fall of Delhi to the mutineers, on 11 May 1857, the nominal Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar appointed Bakht Khan (d.1859) as Commander-in-Chief of the rebel forces. Bakht Khan had arrived in Delhi with 100 jihadis. Bakht Khan was the patron of the Ruhela Afghans who had arrived in Delhi from Hansi, Hissar, Bhopal and Tonk under their Amir-ul-Mujahidin Maulana Sarfraz Ali (Bakht Khan: A leading Sepoy General of 1857, Iqbal Hussain, Proceedings of the Indian History Congress, Vol. 46, 1985, pp. 376). That the Muslims had no illusions of Hindu-Muslim unity is evident from Maulvi Mohammad Said’s representation to the Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar on 20 May, 1857 that the “standard of Holy War had been erected for the purpose of inflaming the minds of the Mahomedans against the Hindus.” In a letter dated 14 June 1857, Major General T. Reed writing from his camp in Delhi to Lawrence, the Chief Commissioner of Punjab says, “They are displaying the green flag in the city and bullying the Hindus.” In Varanasi, the official report dated 4 June 1857 stated that “news was received that some Mussulmans had determined to raise the Green Flag in the temple of Bishessur” (The Sepoy Mutiny and the Revolt of 1857, R.C. Majumdar, Firma KLM, 1957, p 230).

The pan-Islamic connection of the Muslim protagonists of the 1857 Jihad needs mention. Sayyid Fadl Alawi, RahmatullahKairanwi, Haji ImdadullahMakki, Nawab Siddiq Hasan Khan, and Maulana JaferThanesri fled India to escape prosecution for their role in the 1857 Jihad. They used imperial networks – ports, travel routes and communications infrastructure- to build pan-Islamic connections. They sailed across the Indian Ocean to Mecca, Cairo, and Constantinoplein the heartland of the Islamic world (Fugitive Mullahs and Outlawed Fanatics: Indian Muslims in nineteenth century trans-Asiatic Imperial Rivalries, Seema Alavi, Modern Asian Studies Vol. 45, November 2011, pp. 1337-1382; see also her Muslim Cosmopolitanism in the Age of Empire, Harvard University Press, 2015).

Rowlatt Sedition Committee Report

The British were naturally perturbed by the attempts to replace their rule with an Islamic dispensation. The Sedition Committee Report (1918), popularly known as the Rowlatt Committee Report threw light on ‘the nature and extent of the criminal conspiracies connected with the revolutionary movement in India’. The 226-page report has a section on the ‘Muhammadan Current’. The relevant passages in the Report (pp.178-179) noted the following:

  1. The sympathy of Indian Muslims with Turkey was noticeable as long ago as the Crimean War.
  2. Among a small and vaguely defined group of fanatical Muhammadans, there has been a desire to substitute a new Islamic Empire for the present British rule in India.
  3. A plot called ‘Silk Letters’ case was discovered. Its object was to destroy British rule by means of an attack on the North-West Frontier, supplemented by a Muhammadan uprising in this country.
  4. A converted Sikh, Maulvi Obeidullah crossed the North-West Frontier early in August 1915 with three companions Abdulla, Fateh Muhammad and Muhammad Ali. He wished to spread over India a pan-Islamic and anti-British movement through the agency of Deobandi Maulvis
  5. Obeidullah met the members of a Turco-German mission. Maulvi Muhammad Mian Ansari returned in 1916 with a declaration of jihad from the hand of Ghalib Pasha, then Turkish Military Governor of Hedjaz (coastal region of Arabia that includes Mecca and Medina).
  6. An army of God was to draw recruits from India and to bring about an alliance of Islamic rules. Its headquarters were to be in Medina and secondary headquarters under local generals were to be established at Constantinople, Teheran and Kabul.

Role of overseas Indian Muslims

Indian Muslims residing abroad, especially in Britain played no mean role in fanning pan-Islamic sentiment. As early as1886, a pan-Islamic society called the Anjuman-i-Islam had been established in London with branches in India.  In 1903, an Indianbarrister, Abdulla al-Mamun Suhrawardy (1875-1935), revived thisalmost defunct society under the new name of ‘The Pan-IslamicSociety of London’. The Society, apart from establishing direct contactwith Turkey, rendered valuable service in focussing, especiallythrough its journal Pan-Islam, the Muslim feelings on questions affecting Turkey and Islam.

When in September 1911, Italy, with theconnivance of the British and the French, made a raidupon Ottoman Tripoli, the indignation of Muslim India was widespread.The LondonMuslim League even threatened to raise volunteers for the assistanceof Turkey.In order to render financial assistance for the relief ofthe Tripolitan sufferers, a Red Crescent Society was established. From Lahore to Madras, Muslims both Sunnis and Shias donated to the fund. To return the favour, Sunnis joined Shias in condemning the Russianoccupation of northern Persia and the bombardment of the shrine ofImam Ali Raza in Meshhed, Iran (The Khilafat Movement in India, 1919-1924, Muhammad Naeem Qureshi, dissertation submitted to University of London, 1973, p.19-23).

The rumblings begin

When in October 1912, the Balkan States launcheda combined attack on Turkey; the Indian Muslim indignation was spontaneous and bitter. The ulama patched up their differences. The poet-theologian Shibli Numaniraised the cry of ‘Islam in Danger’ and his young protege, Abul Kalam Azad proclaimedthat the time for jihad had come.Shaukat Ali (1875-1958), theU.P. journalist, issued an appeal in the Comrade to organise avolunteer corps.  His brother Mohamed Ali (1878-1951), the editor of the Comrade, advocated that the funds collectedfor the Aligarh University should be loaned to Turkey.  An all-India medical mission under Dr. Mukhtar Ahmad Ansari (1880-1956) reached Constantinopleat the end of December 1912. The mission was able to establish contactsnot only with Young Turk leaders but also with the Egyptian nationalists. A scheme for a rehabilitation colony in Anatolia for Muslim refugees from Macedonia, a university in Medina, anIslamic bank and a co-operative society was propounded. The project was activelysupported by the Comrade which also encouraged the Indian Muslimsto purchase Turkish security bonds.

An important development of pan-Islamismin India was the foundation in May 1913 of a society called theAnjuman-i-Khuddam-i-Kaaba (Society of the Servants of the Kaaba). Maulana Abdul Bari (1879-1926), the influential alim of Firangi Mahal seminary in Lucknow, was its President and M.H. Hosain Kidwai and the Ali brothers were its other promoters.They decided on atwo-fold planfirst, to organise the Muslims to oppose any non-Muslim invasion, and, secondly, to strengthen Turkeyas the one powerful Muslim power, capable of maintaining ‘anindependent and effective Muslim sovereignty over the sacred placesof Islam’.

There were also suspicious cash-rich Turkish visitorswho werereportedly sent to stir up trouble in India.The Turkish Government was reportedly negotiating with a German firm in Hamburg for the purchase of rifles to arm the Indian Muslims (Qureshi, ibid, pp. 22-29).

Such was the situation in India in July 1914 when World War I erupted in the form of a conflict between Serbia and Austria. It was a powder keg waiting to explode!

…to be continued

(The author has written books on Islam, Christianity, contemporary Buddhist-Muslim relations, Shuddhi movement and religious demography)