THE SALVATION ISLE-AMROHA, AMRO-TALE NO.-3

Syed Kaleem Sibtain Naqvi

“Not gold, but only men can make
A people great and strong-
Men who, for truth and honour’sake
Stand fast and suffer long.
Brave men who work while other sleep,
Who dare while others fly,
They build a natiion’s pillars deep,
And them to the sky”……………………….(R. W. Emerson)

‘’THE WINDS AND THE WAVES ARE ALWAYS ON THE SIDE OF THE ABLEST NAVIGATOR’

Undivided India or BHARAT has the honor to welcome and follow the precious teachings of World’s pioneers of non-violence, like GAUTAM BUDDHA, MAHAVEER, ASHOKA ETC. but also that of HZ. MOHAMMAD MOSTAFA ( S.W.) and Hz. IMAM HUSAIN (A.S.) then-after the other godly-men.

MAHATMA GANDHI, the Father of The Nation, was highly inspired by non-violence and sacrifice of HZ. IMAM HUSAIN to establish the HUMANITY in the world. He got the greatest power of non-violence and sacrifice from the un-comparable source of such energy- HZ.IMAM HUSAIN , and acquiring it ,he could get success to gather the peoples of the same ideology together becoming a strong NON-VIOLENT POWER to set free the country from the torment of shackles of British-slavery. So, the followers of the ultimate – ideals of our ideal godly-men get the divine powers to bring about prosperity and honor to the nation and such followers provided reinforcement to the humanity.

SYED SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB was also one of such pillars of AMROHA who never danced to the tunes that were played by his contemporary tyrannical rulers. He was such an amazing source of non-violence that even the poisonous scorpions do not sting the peoples within the area of his DARGAH and if the snake bites some-one in this area, it’s sacs of venom do not send poisonous matter through its fangs, means,-

EVEN THE CREATURES HAVING THE VENOMOUS NATURE BECOME NON-VIOLENT IN THIS GOD BLESSED AREA OF AMROHA.

A LITTLE HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF CONTEMPORARY PERIOD OF SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB-

Syed Sharafuddin Shahvilayat sahib was born in SAHODARA near Lahore in 1252 A.D. and reached AMROHA on 2nd ZILHIJ, 1269 A.D. in the age of 17 years and left this world for everlasting life of heavens on 21st RAJAB, 1382 A.D., so if we deeply go through the metamorphosis of the period, we will find that the entire life of Shahvilayat Sahib acknowledged three dynasties of SALTANATES out of five Sultanate Dynasties ruled in UNDIVIDED INDIA STARTING FROM 12O6 TO 1526 before the battle of PANIPAT in which BABER defeated and killed the LAST SULTAN IBRAHIM LODI on April 20th 1526. That was the time when a number of drastic changes occurred in the entire network of our political, economical and social affairs and values. SYED MOHAMMAD ASHRAF TAQVI was given the title of DANISHMAND by the MOGHAL EMPEROR BABER. Most probably the mosque of Mohalla Shaikh Saddo which is now almost a deserted structure was also built by the instructions of BABER near the raised centre of town Amroha.

ARRIEVAL OF SYED MOHAMMAD ASHRAF DANISHMAND TO AMROHA-

How can the contribution of such a great scholar descendant of Hz. Imam Mohammad Taqi be neglected who came to INDIA during the Emperor Baber’s rule from SUBZWAR and first settled in ZAIDPUR near Amroha but the strong spiritual force of attraction of AMROHA brought him to Amroha where the area of present DANISHMANDAN is there. He was the man of powerful intellect to put the knowledge and intelligence quickly to practical use in life. He promoted the awareness in the society that intellectuality must be the part and parcel of our practical life and mare intelligence is ineffective to achieve the aim of life. It looks that the world today has come in the state of chaos due to perversion in human development where all intelligence is there but no intellect which is obviously visible everywhere. Now we can see that even highly educated persons are not in perfect equilibrium, either they are short tempered, succumb to worry and anxiety or are involved in other extravagances. SYED MOHAMMAD ASHRAF TAQVI SAHIB was so much intellectually intelligent that the MOGHAL EMPEROR BABER honored him the title “DANISHMAND’’ and so the area where he settled in Amroha was called as DANISDMANDAN. Now his descendants have been proving the meaning of the title by getting the world-wide fame by their intellectual contribution not only in literary field but also in all the other sphere of life in INDIA and abroad.

“INTELLECTUAL BEAUTY IS, INDEED, THE HIGHEST KIND OF BEAUTY” ……(C.V.RAMAN)

Now again I am coming to the historical background , I would like here to produce a clear picture of Sultanates ruling in India, around the period of Syed Sharafuddin Shahvilayat Sahib and other contemporary learned saints who adored AMROHA, which affected the culture and traditions at a large scale witnessed by our ancestors and now as a matter of fact we have a vast treasure of our healthy heritage and no doubt, we, all INDIANS have the honor of possessing our most worthy ancient values that have been inspiring the developed and advanced countries for a long time.

MOHAMMAD OF GHOR invaded the INDO-GANGETIC PLAIN during the last quarter of 12th century and conquered – GHAZNI, SINDH, MULTAN, LAHORE and DELHI and the GHORI KUAN at Amroha is one of the witnesses of his regime.

QUTBUDDIN AYBAK a slave of Mohd. Of Ghor proclaimed himself SULTAN OF DELHI in 1206 A.D., which was the beginning of SULTANATE DYNASTIES in INDIA. >>>,then in the beginning of 13th century, a former slave warrior SHAMSUDDIN ILTUMISH became SULTAN OF DELHI from 1211 to 1236 A.D. and after ILTUMISH, his daughter RAZIYA ruled as SULTAN .

Anyway, after RAZIYA SULTAN, GHIYASUDDIN BALBAN, the slave servant of QUTBUDDIN AYBAK became officially SULTAN OF DELHI for the period 1266 to 1290 A.D.

THE DYNASTIES OF SULTANATES:-

Before the first battle of Panipat in which BABER invaded INDIA defeating and killing ABRAHIM LODI on April 20th 1526,there were FIVE DYNASTUES OF SULTANATES and their rulers were called as SULTANS. Syed Sharafuddin Shahvilayat Sahib reached Amroha nearly 270 years earlier than the invasion of Emperor Baber ( 1ST MOGHAL MONARCH).

FIRST DYNASTY (SLAVES) [1206-1290];-

The first dynasty was SLAVE DYNASTY that was in power in INDIA from 1206 to1290 A.D. When Syed Sharafuddin Shahvilayat Sahib reached AMROHA in 1269 A.D., the Sultan from Slave Dynasty ruling in INDIA was GHIYASUDDIN BALBAN whose grave is in Mahroli near Qutab Minar ,was in power from 1266 to1290 A.D.

During 1290 A.D. the slave dynasty came to its’ end with the end of SULTAN KAY QUBADH. SYED SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB reached AMROHA on second Zilhij 1269 A.D. when the LAST FEEBLE SLAVE KING, SULTAN KAY QUBADH was in power for a very short duration and soon disappeared in the fiasco of melting situations to snatch the treasures of Greater India .

SECOND DYNASTY (KHILJIS) [1290-1320];-

The second Dynasty of KHILJIES captured the ruling power from SULTAN BALBAN in 1290 A.D. and the rule of Khilji Dynasty was finished in 1320 A.D. with the beginning of the third Muslim Dynasty 0f TUGHLAQS. SYED SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB was a divine saint so had no links with Sultans of any dynasty while he reached Amroha in 1269 A.D. during the regime of 1st DYNASTY OF slaves.

JALALUDDIN FIROZ KHILJI came in power as SULTAN OF DELHI with the downfall of SLAVE DYNASTY, so, started the KHILJI DYNASTY in the same year 1290 A.D. but all these were immaterial for SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB. FIROZ KHILJI was already an elderly and unpopular Sultan due to closeness of his tribe to the nomadic Afghans. He was unable even to dare to enter his capital because BALBAN’S officers were against him so they revolted.ALI GURSHAP, his nephew and son in law murdered him by the order of his father when he returned in 1296 A.D. successfully repelling two invasions from the MONGOLS.

Ali Gurshap reined for 20 years with the title ALAUDDIN KHILJI ALI GURSHAP (1296 TO 1316 A.D.). He died in early 1316 A.D. The LAST KHILJI SULTAN, Qutbuddin Mubarak Shah Khilji came in power and murdered in 1320 A.D. by his own Chief Minister KHUSRAW KHAN. GHIYASUDDIN TUGHLAQ SHAH -I (1321-1325) The first Sultan of Turkic Tughlaq Dynasty replased KHUSRAW KHAN in the beginning of 1321 A.D. while in Malwas , the ruling house of Khiljis ruled for some time as a remnant token of sultanate. He ruled from 1321 to 1325 A.D. and then MOHAMMAD SHAH –II (1325 to 1351 A.D.) and then MAHMOD IBN-MOHAMMAD (for a month of Mach 1351 A.D.).

THIRD DYNASTY (1320-1413)[TUGHLAQS] ;-

TUGHLAQ DYNASTY remained in power for the longest period in all the five dynasties from 1320 to 1413 A.D., so SYED SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB was also beholding the regimes of GHIYASUDDIN TUGHLAQ –I, from 1321 to 1325 A.D.,MOHAMMAD SHAH TUGHLAQ-II from 1325 to1351, MAHMOD IBN-MOHAMMAD-for March 1351 only and then SULTAN FIROZ SHAH TOGHLAQ got the power to rule INDIA from 1351 to 1388 A.D.

The most talented Tughlaq SULTAN, FIROZ SHAH TUGHLAQ became the ruler in 1351A.D.and successfully ruled for about 38 years till 1388 A.D. ,GHIYASUDDIN TUGHLAQ II(1388-1389) and SULTAN NUSRAT SHAH ,grandson of Firoz shah Tughlaq, ruled the West from Firozabad till 1413 A.D. SYED SHARAFUDDIN SHAHVILAYAT SAHIB PEER PAHARI left this perishable world on 21st Rajab 1382 A.D.(783 Hijri) at Amroha leaving behind his descendants with his divine mission of humanity who carried it on unaffected of the political transition .After 32 years of his death SAYYIDS’DYNASTY came in power in1414 A.D. and the founder SULTAN of this Dynasty was KHIZAR KHAN who claimed to be a descendent of Prophet Mohammad(S.A.W. ).

FOURTH DYNASTY (1414-1451)[SAYYIDS]:-

It was the period after the death of Syed Sharafuddin Shahvilayat when Sayyid Sultans ruled for more than 37 years. As described above KHIZAR KHAN was the first SYED ruler in India who collaborated with TIMUR during his invasion on INDIA. After the successful invasion of TIMUR on INDIA, TIMUR rewarded Khizr Khan the GOVERNORSHIP of Lahore, Multan and Dipalpur because DAULAT KHAN LODI and KHIZAR KHAN both were attempting to occupy the throne of DELHI after the death of the last TUGHLAQ RULER MOHAMMAD SHAH in 1412 A.D. and KHIZAR KHAN won the battle with the help of TIMUR, so he preferred to rule in the name of TIMUR and his successor SHAH RUKH. He did not pronounce him as Sultan Khizar Khan even after the departure of Timur. As a result of Timur’s invasion and continuous wars for succession among the successors of FIROZ SHAH TUGHLAQ, a number of states and provinces of the Sultanate of DELHI declared their independence and KHIZAR KHAN’S Sultanate was reduced to SINDH, WESTERN PUNJAB and WESTERN UTTAR PRADESH. He died a natural death on 20th May1421 A.D.

SULTAN MUBARIK SHAH was the son of Khizar Khan so after the death of his father he became the ruler of DELHI SULTANATE and he declared him as SULTAN MUBARIK SHAH. It was the time when the entire Sultanate was boiling by political and social turmoil due to revolts all around him that could not be controlled and two accomplices of his Wazir, SARWAUL MULK ,killed him on 19th Feb.1434 A. D.

SULTAN MUHAMMAD SHAH-IV who was the nephew of Mubarik Shah ruled the Sultanate of Delhi from 1435 to 1445 but still the situation of the SULTANATE was not favourable , so the political instability was overcastting the SULTANATE.

SULTAN ALAUDDIN ALAM SHAH who was the son of SULTAN MUHAMMAD SHAH ruled from 1445 to 1451 A.D.but he was also marked by political instability. Internal and external revolts were increasing, the ruling power was decreasing due to disintegration of different states and provinces as a result of failures of SULTANS which reduced the ruling territories within the distance of mere ten miles from DELHI to PALAM and the SULTANATE OF DELHI was occupied by LODHI DYNASTY established by Bahlul lodhi in 1451 A.D.

The description of SULTANATES and MONARCHIES is necessary here to be given because AMROHA was always active to serve in all of the fields of literature ,culture and life skills to create healthy bonding between all the peoples to strengthen the humanity in the world .

FIFTH DYNASTY (1451-1526)[LODIS]:-

BAHLUL LODHI(1451-1489 A.D.),SIKANDER LODHI(1489-1517A.D.) and IBRAHIM LODHI(1517-1526 A.D.) SULTANS ruled the DELHI SULTANATE.IBRAHIM LODHI died on 21st April, 1526 who presided over much of INDIA but his own AFGHAN nobility invited BABUR OF KABUL to invade INDIA.

IBRAHIM LODHI died in the BATTLE OF PANIPAT on 20th April1526 A.D., so the rule of MUGHALS RULE started in 1526 to 1540 and then after it from 1540 to 1555 A.D.SURI ruled (SHER SHAH SURI, ISLAM SHAH SURI,MUHAMMAD SURI,FIROZ SURI IBRAHIM SURI and SIKANDERSHAH SURI).Until all these transitional political and social scenarios AMROHA had established its’ intellectual and spiritual rank at the high standard of values by the grace of the GOD through proper channels of divine power. Moghal Monarchy started on April 21st,1526 and ended on June 1858 A.D. NEARLY FOR THREE CENTURIES started with BABUR of FERGANA or present Uzbekistan and ended with the last Moghal Emperor BAHADUR SHAH (ZAFAR)-II. Though, the changing scenario was effective in the entire world, yet AMROHA had been simultaneously enriching the real values of HUMANITY producing the prominent figures who became the lighthouses for creating the literary and social merits in the world.

We are proud of literary, social and intellectual heritage of AMROHA for which innumerable witnesses are still present in the history of Amroha. The past living witnesses have also been expressed in the previous two chapters but as such inspiring personalities were uncountable so the justification requires to get the honour to pay our earnest homage to such charismatic figures. Not only the AMROHI people are highly obliged but the entire literary world is thankful to MEER SYED ISMAIL AMROHI (1105 A.D.), SYED SAADAT ALI SAADAT,SHAH AALAM MAHZON,NIJABAT ALI NIJABAT,GHULAM ALI HUSAINI, NAJEEB UDDIN SAFDAR AND GHULAM HAMADANI MOS HAFI AMROHI during the 12th century.

If we see the pedigree analysis of literary contribution of AMROHA onwards 13th century ,we find JANAB SIRAJUDDIN SIRAJ AMROHI,TAPISH, MOJIZ, RIYAZUL HASAN NIKHAT, ABULHASAN FORQATI , VALI and HAIDER HUSAIN YAKTA AMROHI who promoted the literary culture for making the strong bonding among all the peoples of the world.

During 14th century, Amroha provided its’ revolutionary reinforcement to the culture and literature .The great scholar ALLAMA SHAFIQ HASAN AILIA,MOLVI NASEEM HASAN HILAL and NASEEM AMROHI were the witnesses of the promotion of the literature.With the high and low tides ,mechanization and renascence of the world ,Amroha was also marching shoulder to shoulder in all the fields but the moral values were the dominating factor to shape the society. The centuries were becoming the witness of AMROHA’S CONTRIBUTION to develop the nation of qualities and slowly we entered in 20th century in which AMROHA HAS ITS’ PROMINENT POSITION in all of the fields .

19th century was marvelous for literary awareness of AMROHIS’. JANAB SHAMIM AMROHI, HAFIZ AMROHI,BIRJIS AMROHI ,ZIYA AMROHI, TAMKEEN AMROHI ,SAFI AMROHI,YATEEM ,TOOBA AMROHI,MOZTAR AMROHI ,RAZA HASAN RAZA AMROHI,ZAKI AMROHI,KALEEM AMROHI ,MADINA AMROHI, ANEES HASAN HILAL AMROHI etc. were providing the literature to the society. SYED AAL-E-AHMAD NAIM AMROHI composed not only the rich poetry in Urdu but also in Persion and it looks that his style was highly influenced by MIRZA DABEER .

Chehakta hon sada golzar-e-zahra-o-Mohammad main,
Misal-e-bolbol-e-sodah gulafshan hai zaban mairi,
Ali Allah ka banda hai monkir iska kafir hai,
Main banda hoon Ali ka bund hai aagay zoban mairi
Naim-e-zar ko maula Najuf main yad kart-e hain,
Vaheen darbar main ja kar thamain gi hichkiyan mairi.

Ali ka nam bhi nam-e- khoda kiya rahat-e-jan hai,
Asa-e-peer hai taigh-e-jawan hai hirz-e-tiflan hai.
(Syed Aal-e- Ahmad Naim Amrohi)

JANAB KAMIL AMROHI ,MANZAR AMROHI,SIKANDER HUSAIN FAHEEM AMROHI,SADEQAIN AMROHI , MOLVI SAFI MORTAZA SAHIB,MOLVI IBADAT SAHIB KALEEM AMROHI and their contemporary scholars provided the reinforcement to the progressive attitude of the society. They ALL ARE THE BRIGHT SHINING STARS OF AMROHA who made Amroha the land of excellent status in the world of literature.We are also proud of MASTER RAUF AMROHI,RAIS AMROHI,HIYAT AMROHI,MAHSHAR AMROHI,RAGHUBEER SARAN DIVAKAR RAHI,PURWAZ AMROHI AND PRESENTLY the same responsibility has been carried forward with healthy texture by a number of well versed, witty literary personalities having treasure of abilities. No doubt DR.MANZAR ABBAS NAQVI ,,JANAB AZEEM AMROHI,JANAB SAIFI AMROHI,JANAB NASHIR AMROHI and many more are the pride of AMROHA who have not only been serving for the best possible beautification of literature but also for the uplift of the society and now nobody can hesitate to say that AMROHA IS STILL THE ISLE OF ALL THE BEAUTIES.

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And departing leaves behind us
Footprint on the sand of time-
Footprints that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
Aforlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing shall take heart again…….(H.W.LONGFELLOW)

Another winter another Gandhi

He was not even 12 as it appeared from his decrepit bony figure. I’m writing about a bedraggled and unkempt kid who, if alive might still be struggling to find his identity.

HISTORY IS often made to glorify or destroy one individual. Ironically, the individual I am talking about was not even a grown-up man but a child. He was not even 12 as it appeared from his decrepit bony figure. I’m writing about a bedraggled and unkempt kid who, if alive might still be struggling to find his identity.

It is another matter that I am lucky as I am writing his story sitting in a room warmed with an oil heater. Where is he at this moment? I don’t know. It is difficult to survive the Delhi nights with the deadly chill on the road while the mercury is touching 7 degree Celsius.

A few days ago I had to make an urgent trip to Lucknow. I was able to afford Tatkal payment for ‘Garib Rath’ so I entered the train with Rs. 800 and a worn-out traveler’s brief-case. He had boarded the train with shards and flints in his dirty crooked hands with the nails that were never cut. His torn shirt had no pocket.

His trousers had so many colors that you could call it VIBGYOR in action under the domination of soiled hue. Having entered the compartment I checked my berth and planted myself like a Maharajah. He stood in the middle of the berths and began with a dirge of Talat Mehmood’s – “Aey mere dil kaheen aour chal, ghum ki duniya se dil bhar gaya….dhoond le ab koyi ghar naya.”

I remember Talat Mehmood – the golden voice of Indian cinema who became the second victim of creative intrigues of film industry after Master Madan. Talat was my childhood favourite and the child’s rendition of this in this wintry evening put the clock back for me.

Talat was a singer of the century. He was compelled by circumstances to sing at the birthday parties and weddings of the rich in five star hotels. This child was obviously a beggar and his circumstances had put him in Garib Rath. His delivery was clear with a fair grip over pronunciation that reflected his background. He played with those flints in his fingers with a mastery that could put to shame many of our copy-cat music directors. The train was yet to leave Hazrat Nizam Uddin Railway Station and the passengers were still boarding the train. After the performance he held out his palm with an appeal in his bleary eyes. Some one rupee coins were thrown at him and he disappeared.

“Garib Rath” was Laluji’s baby to make the middle classes enjoy the luxury for at least one night at reasonable prices, what the rich take for granted. It doesn’t have the shutters of ordinary trains which you could pull down after smoking the bidi or when the icy wind chills your bones. It has packed glass-windows which run the length of the train. Your chattering teeth stop hitting their sharp edges once you enter the compartment. When I looked out there were hundreds and hundreds of people on the platforms waiting for other destinations. I appreciated the new sense of discipline of Delhi boarders as no one was knocking at the door “let us in, we know you have space in there!” At the assigned time the train pulled out of station.

My co-passenger in the next seat was a Mantriji’s relative and his retinue. As the train crossed Ghaziabad, two suitcases were erected vertically and a long rectangular six-ply plank was perched on it. A servant put up the day’s newspaper on the plank to make a smart table. Some tiffin materialized from somewhere and presto! It was a healthy competition between “Chappan Bhog” and “Kareem Nematkada” right before my eyes.

They asked me to join in. I politely refused as a principle. My heart was willing my mind was discrete. A lot of food was still on the table when Mantriji’s relative and his staff called it a night. The residue was gathered and wrapped in the crumpled newspaper in a slip-shod way and pushed under the seats. After some time the travellers began to feel drowsy and berths were unfolded, the lights of the compartment were switched off and Garib Rath rather the ‘poor’s palace-on-wheels’ continued its journey.

I got up around midnight to go to the toilet. It was an unfriendly hour but you can‘t refuse the call of nature. One needs to be a circus acrobat if you want to land safely on the floor from the 3rd tier height. As I was struggling with my belt, there was a barrage of rarest abuse just outside. Then there was more banging and I felt more secure inside than outside.

As the commotion came down to a low pitch I gathered courage and ventured out. Now I was fully awake. There were people in the corridor and all were embroiled in high pitched dialogue about a train-thief. I was wondering if I was dreaming this but it was for real. The same boy at the door. Now he had a small broom in his hand for cleaning the floor of the compartment. He was almost hanging from the door. I thought they were pushing him out. No, they were not that unkind. They were just abusing him for not getting down at Moradabad. Someone instructed him to get down at the next station.

I said, “Don’t be silly. Where he will go in this chilly night?”
“Saley bhikari char atae hain…………”.
“But where will he go?” I tried to reason with him.

“Aap bahut hamdard ban rahe ho. Jab tumhara kuch qeemti chal jaega to hum hi ko ilzam doge.” You are showing compassion for him but you would be the first to complain when any of your costly belongings are stolen. Poverty has many reasons to turn to crime. The poor are aware of that trait and rich are more afraid of that trait.
Garib Rath slowed down as the next stop was approaching. A new station, a new destination for few arrived but it didn’t matter for the passengers who were bound for longer destinations. This boy was offloaded at a station which was never his destination. I may be wrong. Any station could be a destination of a poor kid.

A few decades back Mahatma Gandhi was thrown out of a train in South Africa. He was strong and he had fought against that treatment. His had succeeded in liberating his own country from the same races. Tonight a new Gandhi failed desperately in his own country. One of Gandhi’s children was again kicked out of the train in winter. This kid is not the first and would not be the last who will be thrown out of a moving train. Another Mohd Toughlaq was defeated tonight; another without-ticket kid might have become the object of Talat’s melody – out of this duniya of ghum – ghum ki duniya se dil bhar gaya. Perhaps this winter is too cold to survive.

Naim Naqvi

Naim Naqvi

Did his graduation in Science discipline from AMU in 1972-73. He was Secretary of University Ali Society in 1970 and M.M. Hall Literary Society in early 70 's and member of Tayyabji Literary Society. Did his Diploma in Bakery Administration from HTT College Oxford Street London in 1987. Worked with National Herald - Delhi, Blitz - Bombay as Trainee Journalist and in Production Department with 'Naya Sansar Pictures' of Khwaja Ahmed Abbas at Bombay in early 70's. Traveled for study and training purposes to Germany, U.K., Switzerland, France, Dubai, Oman, AbuDhabi, Bahrain and Philepines.

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