BY HAROON RASHID BHAT
Hearts echoed with silent lament and lips uttered “Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rajioon” when social media flooded with news of the untimely death of the prominent Islamic scholar Mufti Faiz-Ul -Waheed on 1st June 2021 at 7:30 am. According to the reports, Mufti Sahab was admitted to the Acharaya Shri Chander College of Medical Sciences (ASCOMS) in Jammu on 23th of May after complaining of severe body pain and fever. The doctors on duty did their best to save his life but his destiny led him to the eternal journey that commences instantly when a soul leaves the mortal body forever.
Though the Mufti Sahab attained much prominence as an authority in Islamic jurisprudence and exegesis of the Quran from the very beginning but his personality came into the limelight fully when he translated the Quran into Gojri language and owned the credit of being the first translator in that language. He dedicated his entire life to comprehend the word of Almighty Allah and propagating its universal messages through his distinct way of teaching and writing. His life became the source of inspiration for others especially for the Gojjir community and other allied ethnic communities like the Bakarwal and the Phari Community. He opened the gateway of knowledge for all especially for his community.
He was a bold speaker. His presence in a public gathering attracted a lot of believers. He always stressed the necessity of cultivating values of philanthropy, simplicity, and modest living. While addressing at a convention in Gool, Ramban in November 2018, he said “The success of every person is concealed in the Quran”. Besides this grand work of translation, he authored many other books like Siraj-Um-Muneera (The shinning lamp, a biography of Prophet Mohammad SAW), Namaz Kae Masayel Quran, and Hadees Ki Roshni Ma ( The matters about prayer in the light of the Quran and traditions of Prophet Mohammad SAW and Ahkaam-e- Mayyat ( The rules of the deceased). During his lifetime, he traveled extensively in J and K in meeting scholars of Islam students, visited many institutions and coaching centers, encouraged the students enrolled in various Madrasa’s to acquire Modern education along with religious educations so that they become the best Dayees of Islam. He established a Madrasa at Bathindi where hundreds of students are receiving Islamic education. Besides imparting Islamic knowledge to the students there, the institution is taking care of the basic needs of the students like food, shelter, clothing, etc. Underscored the importance of modern education in this postmodern stage, students are being acquainted with other subjects like English, Urdu, Mathematics, Computer, etc.
Born in Dodhasan Bala, Thanamandi, Rajouri in 1964. He received his basic education of the Quran in Madrasa Kāshif-ul-Uloom in Thanamandi and the Madrasa Tālim-ul-Qur’ān in Muzaffar Nagar. He memorized the whole Quran and became the Hafizi-Quran. He acquired specialization in the “Qirat” in 1982. He studied for two years in Dars-e-Nizami in Madrasa Khādim-ul-Islam in Hapur and graduated from the Darul Uloom Deoband in 1991. In the meantime, he also completed his M.A. degree in Urdu from the Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar University. In 1992, he started his teaching career at the Madrasa Ashraf-ul-Uloom in Jammu. According to his students, Mufti Sahab had a great command over Arabic, Urdu, and Gojiri. He along with colleagues started Jamia Markaz-ul-Ma’arif in Bathindi, Jammu, and moved there on 5 October 1995. Besides served as the Chief-Mufti and patron of the Markaz-ul-Marif, he used to hold special Quran sessions (Duraas) in Bathindi Jammu for the general public especially during the month of Ramadan. I came to know that his future plan was to translate the Quran into the Phari language. Alas! He could not. ) Let us hope that his students will retain his legacy, give new impetus to his mission and fulfill his dream.
His death has been widely mourned not only in J and K but across the globe. Ulmas paying tribute to him from all over India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, South Africa, and many more countries. Political leaders, Academician, civil societies also expressed their grief over his demise. His Namaz- Jinaza was conducted in phased manner-repeated forty times giving due regard to the SOPs of COVID-19. He will always be remembered for his insightful knowledge of Islamic jurisprudence (Sharia Law) the exegesis of the Quran, and his unique translation work. (Translation of the Quran into Gojiri language) . Higher Academic institutions must recognize his work and should be honored with a Ph.D. degree for his splendid work of translation.
The real and true scholars of Islam like him are the big blessing from Allah. These true scholars (Ulama-e-Haq) are the inheritors of real knowledge, which Allah gave to prophets and through prophets (Peace be upon them) these scholars. May Almighty Allah give the best reward to these scholars and give us the proper understanding to follow them! –Ameen
Haroon Rashid Bhat is a treacher by profession.