Al Jamiatul Ashrafia: North India's popular Muslim Institution

Arrival of Hafize Millath

Hafiz-e-Millat came to Mubarakpur on 29th of Shawwal 1352/ 14th of January 1934 and was appointed the principal of the Madarsa. At the time the Madarsa was situated at purani basti (where Hazrat Aziz-e-Millat lives these days.) Instrutions were given only in the reading of Qur’an, pimary religious texts, Persian language and Mathematics. There were no students from outside Mubarakpur. The annual budget of the Madarsa was 2757rupees, 14 annas and 9 pies. He emerged as the harbinger of a new enthusiasm in the Madarsa and created a unique Islamic atmosphere in the town. The Madarsa became famous far and wide for its quality education and it drew many student from outside Mubarakpur and soon the Madarsa was packed to its capacity. At the time of Hafiz-e-Millat’s arrival, those in the opposition got panicky with these developments and they intensified their activities. Hafiz-e-Millat accepted these challenges and got ready for constructive thoughts and deeds. Now he delivered speeches to put counter challenge to the opponents and devoted all his energy to make the Madarsa thrive and flourish and Hafiz-e-Millat ‘s efforts on those fronts were crowned with success. This process of replies and counter replies continued for four months. Hafiz-e-Millat’s speeches exposed the weakness of the opponents who were extremely defamed. He gave the slogan-Unity is life and dissension is death-to the people of Mubarakpur and won over their hearts

Al-Jamia Al Ashrafiya- Mubarakpur

Al-Jamia Al Ashrafiya- Mubarakpur

Madrasa Misbahul Uloom

Some elderly and well intentioned Muslims of Mubarakpur established a madarsa called Misbahul Uloom in 1317 (A.H.) / 1899 (A.D.) next to the mosque of Rani Deena baba in a thatched house on the western side. The Madarsa was aimed to impart the education of the Holy Qur’an and the primary religious texts. This institution was run with the assistance and contributions of the people in spite of their bad economic condition.

Those were the days when there was no discrimination between the Sunnis and the deobandis. Except for some Shi’ites the entire Muslim population comprised the Sunnis.

The early teachers of the madarsa were Maulana Mohammad Siddique Ghusavi , Maulana Noor Mohammad Mahmood. Unfortunately maulvi mahmood, who belonged to Pura Ma’roof, a village in the district of Azamgarh, was from the Deoband school and he did not keep his inclinations secrets. Two students and the managers of the Madarsa and some others came under his influence. The difference rose with the emergence of the Deobandi School of thought. When heated debate started on whether Allah can tell a lie or not. Some students under the impact of Maulvi Mahmood believed that it was possible while the Sunnis believed that Allah can not tell a lie. This controversy grew in magnitude and affected the Madarsa, rather adversely. The Deobandis started their own Madarsa,called Ehya-ul-Uloom while the ambitious Muslims retained the name of Misbahul Uloom and continued their madarsa as such. They shifted it to the Mosque at Gola Bazar in 1326 (A.H.) 1908 (A.D.)

Madrasa Latheefiay Ashariya

According to the wishes of Maulana Mohammad Umar Lateefi , a desciple of Hazrat Shah Abdul lateef Chisti, a sufi descendant of Bahadur Shah Zafar and several other disciples of Shakhul Mashaikh Hazrat Syed Shah Ali Hussain Ashrafi Kichhauchhavi,(d. 1355/1936) Madarsa Misbahul Uloom got two more prefixes and came to be known as “Madarsa Lateefia Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom”. It worked on a limited scale along with traditional line. Then the Madarsa kept on shifting from place to place and it finally established itself in 1341 (A.H.) /1922 (A.D.)in Purani Basti. This madarsa is generally known as Purana Madarsa. Then, for unknown reason the prefix “Lateefia” was omitted and the madarsa came to be known as “Madarsa Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom.”

Madarsa Misbahul Uloom could not progressed as desired after the death of its sincere teacher Maulana Mohammad Siddique Ghusavi (a cousin of Hazrat Sadras Shariah Maulana Amjad Ali Azmi) due to the frequent entry and exit of many other teacher s during those days .

Maulvi Shukrullah Mubarakpuri, after having graduated from Darul Uloom, Deoband came to Mubarakpur in 1336 (A.H.) and started working for the propagation of his school of thought. The followers of this school separated their Friday prayers in an another mosque, on their own, in 1337 (A.H.), while these people said their Friday prayers and Eid prayers in Jama Masjid, Raja Mubarak Shah. With the continuous and consistent efforts of Maulvi Shukrullah, the Sunnis started feeling rather intensively the need for a high statured Sunni scholar who may take over, pose a counter challenge to the opponents and take Madarsa Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom on the way to progress. The people of Mubarakpur invited Sadrus Shariah Hazrat Maulana Amjad Ali Azmi (d. 1367 / 194A) and Muhaddith-e-Azam Hazrat Maulana Syed Mohammad Ashrafi Kichhauchhavi (d. 1381 / 1960) and both the scholars in their own wisdom, according to the wishes of the people of the mubarakpur and the needs of the time selected a pious and qualified teacher. The teacher was Hafiz Abdul Aziz Moradabadi who is known as Ustazul Ulema Jalalatul Ilm Hafiz-e-Millat Allama Shah Abdul Aziz Moradabadi for his wide spread valuable religious and academic services and he came to be known as a bright star in the page of History.

Darul Uloom Ahle-Sunnath Madrasa

Just at the heated discourses and debates held during Moharram 1353 H. to Rabiul Akhir 1353 H. came to a close, the members as well-wishers of Ashrafia started a new constructive front under the leadership of Hafiz-e-Millat. A meeting was held in Jama Masjid Raza Mubarak Shah and on Friday the project for constructing buildings for Ashrafia was started and a move for raising fund began. In spite of their economic poverty, the sunni muslims of Mubarakpur spent out whatever they had on their hand. The work of collecting the contribution went on for two months. About the dedication and enthusiasm of Mubarakpur for collecting the contributions some office bearers of Ashrafia write in the annual report :

” The people of Mubarakpur spent out their rupees, sold their cattle, live stock, pots and pans, cloth, jewelleries to raise the fund of Ashrafia. The Muslims of Mubarakpur dedicated every type of valuables to raise the fund for Ashrafia. The Muslim women of Mubarakpur gave their jewelleries- there most favorite and dear valuables. What a real and genuine religious fervour! For the construction of the first storey the women gave out approximately 50 kilograms of jewelleries save gold jewelleries, to Ashrafia. (Rudad-Darul Uloom Ashrafia, P3, 1356 A.H.)

For the construction of the new building of Darul Uloom Ashrafia, Hafiz-e-Millat and the Sunni Muslims of Mubarakpur took a plot of land from Sheikh Mohammad Ansari (d. 1388 / 1968) at Gola bazaar, Mubarakpur. In 1935 people decided to lay the foundation stone. The foundation stone laying ceremony was attended by Sheikhul Mashaiekh Hazrat Ashrafi Mian Kichhauchhavi, Hazrat Sadrus Shariah Azmi, Hazrat Muhaddithe-Azam Hind and other distinguished Ulema. After the Friday prayer Hazrat Hafiz-e-Millat and the distinguished Ulema laid down the foundation stone and prayed for its development. Its foundation year came to be “Bagh-e-Firdaus” when computed according to the numbers as in chronogram. Its name was proposed to be Darul Uloom Ahl-e-Sunnat Madarsa Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom and later it became famous as Darul Uloom Ashrafia. It took a decade to construct its two storeyed building. The classes were held in the same building for about forty years. Afterwards, this two storeyed building has been constructed in its place on 8th of Jamadi Akhir 1421 A.H./ 8th of September 2000 A.D.

Al Jamiathul Ashrafiya

The building of Ashrafia was not sufficient enough to accommodate the students. The far sighted vision, practical wisdom and the educational need urged Hafiz-e-Millat to look for a spacious site for the Madarsa, Out side the town. Thus a spacious plot of land was brought in the southward region of Mubarakpur to materialize the desired goal of “Aljamiatul Ashrafia” and it was announced that a three-day historic educational conference will be held on 5th ,6th and 7th of may 1972. The educational conference was held in the vicinity of today’s Aljamiatul Ashrafia.

The names of some Ulema who participated in the conference are as follows:

  1. Mufti-e-Azam Hind Hazrat Maulana Shah Mustafa Raza Qadari Brailawi.
  2. Syed-ul-Ulema Hazrat Maulana Syed Ale Mustafa Qadri Barkati Marahravi, Chief of All India Sunni Jameatul Ulema.
  3. Mujahi-e-Millat Hazrat Maulana Shah Mohammad Habeebur Rehman Qadri Orrissawi, Chief of All India Tableegh-I-Sirat and Founder of Jamia Habibia Allahabad, U.P.
  4. Shams-ul-Ulema Hazrat Maulana Qauzi Shamsuddin Ahmad Jafri Razvi jaunpuri.
  5. Khatib-e-Mashriq Hazrat Maulana Mushtaq Ahmad Nizami, Founder of Darul Uloom Gharib Nawaz, Allahabad.
  6. Hazrat Maulana Mohammad Rizwanur Rahman Farooqui, the Mufti of Malwa, Indore, M.P.
  7. Hazrat Maulana Abdul Mustafa Azmi Naqshabandi.
  8. Hazrat Maulana Shah Sirajul Hoda Saheb Baitul Anwar, Gaya, Bihar.
  9. Hassanul Hind Hazrat Beakal Utsahi Azizi Balrampuri, Ex. M.P.
  10. Raisul Qalam Hazrat Allam Arshadul Qadri was the convenor of this conference under the supervision of Hafiz-e-Millat.

In the evening, on 8th of May, Mufti-e-azam Hind, Hazrat Syedul Ulema and other distinguished Ulema and Mashaiekh laid down the foundation stone of Aljamiatul Ashrafia. People thronged to attend this ceremony. Their dedicated and unmixed excitement was worth seeing. All the concerned people were enthused with good wishes and benedictions for Aljamiatul Ashrafia’s construction and made dedicated and untiring efforts, raised fund’s and tried to excel one another in this attempt.

The massive two strayed building of the central school of Aljamiatul Ashrafia was built within one year and a half. Afterwards a magnificent dome was also constructed on it.

The second educational conference was held on 16th and 17th November 1973. Ulema, mashaiekh and people participated with the same favour and zeal. The ulema deliberated upon the source and need of more building construction, more well organized system of curricular and co-curricular activities and more elaborate educational statutes.

At this time (1421 A.H./ 2001 A.D.)there are more than 150 teachers and employees in Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia who carry out their concerned duties with deep sincerity. More than 1200 students live in the hostels. Besides them there are more than 6000 boys and girls who pursue their studies in the boys primary and high school and the girls primary and high school respectively. Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia has several branches. There are some such Madarsas whose teachers are paid by Ashrafia.

By the Grace of Allah, Ashrafia enjoys the support and confidence of the muslim community. That is the reason why all the activities of education and construction are smoothly carried on without any difficulty.

Under the able leadership of Hafiz-e-Millats worthy son, Hazrat Aziz-e-Millat Allama Shah Abdul Hafiz-Moradabadi, the chief and head of Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia, this constructive educational caravan heads towards its desired destination with utmost favour and enthusiasm.

Bulidings

Several buildings of Al-Jamiatul ashrafia Outside the Mubarakpur Town are stretched over 40 acres of land. Their referential sketch is given below.

Central Building of Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia:
This magnificent two storeyed Building has 31 rooms in all. In it there are 28 rooms of the size of 30×20 , two big hall of size of 40×30 and a Darul Hadith of the size of 42×42 square feet. The dome of the Darul Hadith is about 107 feet high.

Allama Abdul Rauf Darul Hifz Wal Tajweed:
There are 28 rooms in this building. Out of them 20 rooms are of the size of 20×15 while remaining 8 rooms are of the size of 25×20. This building too is two storeyed.

Azizi Hostel:
It is a two storeyed building. There are 120 large and small rooms in it.

Barkati Hostel:
This is also a two storeyed building wherein there are 22 large and small rooms.

Ahsaul Ulema Dining Hall:
There are two big hall of the size of 30×30. Besides them, there are 8 rooms for other relevant necessities.

Teachers Colony:
This is a two storeyed building. There are 20 flats. Each flats has three rooms and a kitchen as is well equipped with other facilities.

Azizul Masajid:
This is a grand mosque. The area inside it is about 80×117 while the whole mosque is stretched over 53145 square feet. It is one of the greatest mosques of India.

Hafiz-e-Millat Institute of Information Technology:
In this building there are two big halls, an office and a rooms. This building is well-equipped with other facilities.

Darul Shifa:
There is a building named, Darul Shifa near the main gate . It has 3 rooms and is well-equipped with other facilities including a water tank.

Power tank:
It has 3 rooms. Wherein there are four Generators. The first generator is of 62 k.v., the second one is of 43 k.v., the third one is of 15 k.v. and the fourth one is of 5 k.v.

Water Tanks:
To maintain adequate water supply in Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia there is a very large water tank with the capacity of 250000 liters. Besides it, each building has a small water tank with the capacity of 1000 or 2000 liters.

Tube Wells:
There are 4 tube wells in the campus of the jamia which fulfill the need of a large tank. There is a large pool too.

The Rauzah:
The holy shrine of Huzoor Hafiz-e-Millat is situated in the campus of jamia.

Plot:
There is a plot stretched over 6500 square feet in the east of the jamia across the road.

Imam Ahmad Raza Library:
The building , stretched over 13000 square feet, is under construction.

Mufti Mohammad Shareeful Haque Darul Ifta:
It is stretched over 2000 square feet and is under construction.

Sadrus Shariah Darul Qadha:
The building is stretched over 2000 square feet and is under construction.
The above stated buildings are out side the town where Al-Jamiatul Ashrafia with its all departments is situated. The buildings and plots, which are within the town, are mentioned below.

Bagh-e-Firdaus (Darul Uloom Ahl-e-Sunnat Madarsa Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom):
It is five storeyed building which is stretched over 730000 square feet. There are 90 shops in the basement and the ground floor. In the three upper storeys there are the office of Ashrafia Monthly, class rooms for the nursery school, class room for Hifzul Quran and a large hall for congregational prayers.

In the east of Bagh-e-Firdaus there is a market extending over 3500 square feet. This is a two storeyed building wherein there are 13 shops and 3 large hall.

In the east, the plot adjacent to the Bagh-e-Firdaus, is about 300 square feet wherein the construction of class rooms for the primary school will start very soon .

Ashrafia Market :This is a two storeyed building wherein there are 58 shops.
In the north of Ashrafia Market, there is a two storeyed building wherein there are 8 shops.

In front of Ashrafia Market there is a two storeyed building stretched over 300 square feet in the west. There are 4 shops in it.

The two storeyed building, in which the Nomani dawakhana is situated, has 20 rooms.

In the east of Ashrafia Market there is two storeyed building wherein there are 3 small shops and 2 big shops.

There is at market a Mohalla Purani Basti. There are three shops and a large room.

There is a market at Mohalla Katra wherein there are 18 shops.

At Mohalla Pura Khawaja there are four class rooms of the size of 20×25 for the Nursery classes, a courtyard and a verandah.

At Mohalla Nawadah there is a building having two shops.

At Mohalla Nawadah road there is a small plot.

There is a plot stretched over 1000 square feet at Mohalla Pura Dulhan wherein there is a big hall.

At Mohalla Pura Dulhan there is a plot of about 500 square feet.

The two storeyed building of Ashrafia Junior High School is situated at Mohalla Pura Khizr over a vast area of land. In the outer section of the building there are two shops.

There is a two storeyed building in the place of the old Madarsa Lateefia Ashrafia Misbahul Uloom, Aziz-e-Millat Maulana Abdul Hafiz, the Sarbrah-e-Ala and the head of Al Jamiatul Ashrafia, resides there. In the outer parts of the buildings there lives some students also.

There is an old-fashioned building near the Raza Mubarak Shah Jama Masjid in which two teachers of the Ashrafia reside.

There is a splendid two storeyed building of Raja Mubarak Jama Masjid at Mohalla Purani Basti. It is the largest mosque of the town.

At Mohalla Pura Rani there is a two storeyed building of Ashrafia Girls Primary School wherein there are 16 big halls.

At Mohalla Katra, there is a large building of Ashrafia Girls School wherein there are 14 big halls. This building is stretched over approximately twenty five thousand square feet.

In the south of Ashrafia Girls School there is a plot of about 11250 square feet.

In the west of Ashrafia Girls High School there is a big plot stretched over 23000 square feet.

At Mohalla Katra road , there is a godown of about 3000 square feet, which is used to collect the skins of sacrificial animal slaughtered on the occasion of Eid-ul Azha.

There is a big plot in the north of Mubarakpur Government Hospital.

There is a plot at Mohalla Pura Rani. Besides them there are some other plots also.

A few buildings of Ashrafia are in other cities also. At Mohalla Takiya in the Azamgarh city, there is a two storeyed building wherein there is a Nursery School and a Madarsa for Hifz classes and Primary classes of Darse Nizami.

There is a four storeyed building of Jamia Hazrat Nizamuddin Aulia at Zakir Nagar, New Delhi, where the students learn modern Arabic and English languages and do their specialization course in Dawah and Islamic Studies. There is special arrangement for the students of Hafiz-o-Quirah also. The members of the Jamia are doing their best to complete the construction of the fifth floor.

There is a plot near Raza Masjid street # 18 , Zakir Nagar , New Delhi-25

Offices for Public Relations:
The office is situated in Sunni Badi Masjid Ghrup Dev , Mumbai. Besides them, there are several branches of Ashrafia through out the country which render their educational and missionary services under the patronage of Aziz-e-Millat Allama Shah Abdul Hafiz Sahab, The chief and head of Ashrafia.
Source: official site aljamiatulashrafia.org , please visit the site fore more info.
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