Zafar Ali Khan

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Zafar Ali Khan
Tomb of Zafar Ali Khan
Born 1873
Wazirabad, Gujranwala District, Punjab
Died 1956
Lahore, Punjab
Occupation Poet, journalist

Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956) (Urdu: ظفرؔ علی خان‎ – Ẓafar ʿAlī Xān), also known as Maulana Zafar Ali Khan was a writer, poet, translator and journalist[1] who played an important role in the Pakistan Movement against the British Raj.[2][3]

Early life[edit]

Zafar was born from a Janjua family at Kot Meerath, Wazirabad, which at the time was part of British India. He received his early education in Mission High School, Wazirabad, Gujranwala District.[4] He received his early education in Wazirabad and matriculated from Patiala and then passed his intemediate from the then, Aligarh College. Next, he worked in the postal department of the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the same place where his father worked, but resigned over a row with his seniors.[5][6] He rejoined Aligarh College and gained his BA.[7]


After graduation, Khan was appointed secretary to Mohsin-ul-Mulk, then in Bombay. Then he worked for some time as a translator in Hyderabad, Deccan, rising to the post of Secretary, Home Department. He returned from Hyderabad and launched his daily Zamindar from Lahore which was founded by his father Maulvi Sirajuddin Ahmad.[6][8]

He was against the Ahmadiyya Movement and waged a campaign against it in his daily Zamindar.[9] In, 1934 when the British government banned Zamindar, Maulana Zafar Ali Khan, sued and got the government orders revoked by the court. He stood firm against Mirza Ghulam Ahmed and tried to falsify his claim of Prophethood through his rational columns. Essentially all Muslims consider Mirza Ghulam Ahmed a liar and his claim false.

To Wikipedia: I strongly protest at the inclusion of the ridiculous and obviously false propaganda statement that *all* Muslims consider Mirza Ghulam Ahmad as "a liar". Many eminent Muslims considered him a Muslim and servant of Islam. Maulana Zafar Ali Khan himself supported the Ahmadiyya movement as an Islamic movement before the 1930s. Maulana Zafar Ali Khan's maternal uncle Maulana Muhammad Abdullah Khan (d. 26th April 1935) was a scholar of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Jamaat. This uncle's two sons, Maulana Mustafa Hasan Khan and Maulana Murtaza Hasan Khan were prominent Lahore Ahmadiyya missionaries and writers.


Khan's interest in poetry began in his childhood. His poems have religious and political sentiment.[3] He was specially versed in impromptu compositions. His poetical output includes Baharistan, Nigaristan, and Chamanistan. His other works are Marka-e-Mazhab-o-Science, Ghalba-e-Rum, Sayr-e-Zulmet and an opera Jang-e-Roos-o-Japan.[10]


He died on 27 November 1956, in his hometown Karamabad, near Wazirabad, Punjab. His funeral prayer led by his companion Mohammad Abdul Ghafoor Hazarvi[11]

Memorials and Legacy[edit]

Sahiwal Stadium, а multi-purpose stadium іn Sahiwal, Punjab, was renamed as Zafar Ali Stadium in his honour. Іt іs used fоr football аnd Cricket games. The stadium holds 10,000 people.[12]

He served the Pakistan Movement and is acknowledged as the father of Urdu journalism.[2] It has been said of him: "he was the father of Urdu journalism, … The Zamindar newspaper, when Zafar Ali Khan was the proprietor and editor, was the Urdu paper for the Muslims."[9]

See also[edit]



  1. ^ Khan, Zafar Ali (19 November 2012). "Pakistani writers show renewed interest in Zafar Ali Khan's works". Dawn News. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan – the history maker". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Markus Daechsel (1 June 2002). Politics of Self-Expression. Routledge. pp. 64–. ISBN 978-1-134-38371-9. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  4. ^ Maulana Zafar Ali Khan [1873–1956]
  5. ^ "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan". Story of Pakistan. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956)". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  7. ^ Khan, Maulana Zafar Ali. "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan (1873–1956)". Journalism in Pakistan. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  8. ^ Ayesha Jalal (2000). Self and sovereignty: individual and community in South Asian Islam since 1850. Routledge. pp. 184–. ISBN 978-0-415-22077-4. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Maulana Zafar Ali Khan and British rule over Muslims of India". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  10. ^ K. C. Kanda (1 January 2005). Masterpieces of patriotic Urdu poetry: text, translation, and transliteration. Sterling Publishers Pvt. Ltd. pp. 161–. ISBN 978-81-207-2893-6. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  11. ^ "Pakistani writers show renewed interest in Zafar Ali Khan's works | Newspaper". Dawn.Com. 19 November 2012. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  12. ^ "Sahiwal". Retrieved 3 June 2013.