Farhat Hashmi

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Farhat Hashmi
Native name فرحت ہاشمی
Born Farhat Hashmi
(1957-12-22) December 22, 1957 (age 57)
Sargodha, Punjab, Pakistan
Nationality Pakistani
Occupation Islamic scholar

Farhat Hashmi (Urdu: فرحت ہاشمی‎) (born December 22, 1957) is an Islamic scholar from Pakistan[1][2] She was formerly a lecturer and assistant professor at the Faculty of Usul-al-Din at International Islamic University, Islamabad.[3] Hashmi has founded a school near Toronto, Ontario, Canada, as an extension of Al-Huda International, which she had founded in Pakistan in 1994.[4]

Early life[edit]

Farhat Hashmi was born in Sargodha, Punjab to the family of Abdur Rehman Hashmi, a Muslim scholar.[3] She received her masters degree in Arabic at the Punjab University, Lahore, and was married shortly afterwards to Idrees Zubair. She trained and took her PhD at the University of Glasgow.[5][6] Hashmi taught at the International Islamic University Islamabad,[7] while also conducting informal religious study circles for women in Islamabad.

Many traditionalist ulema maintain that she is not a qualified scholar because she is not traditionally trained.[8]


Hashmi considers taqlid in regards to Islamic jurisprudence to be permitted for those, who have no other choice, but discourages the blind taqlid that shuns the verses of the Qur'an, the sunnah of the prophet, the sayings of the companions and the taqlid that prevents people from searching for evidence.[9]

During a sermon when asked by a woman what a wife should do if her husband was unwilling to help her destitute parents, Hashmi promptly quoted An-Nisa, 34 (Chapter Al Nisa, verse 34) of the Quran, arguing that the wife should comply with her husband's wishes, "no matter what, as he was her divinely appointed imam."[1]

Hashmi has preached that Muslim women should let their husbands marry a second time so “other sisters can also benefit”. This saves men from having a non-marital relationship, which is forbidden according to the Quran.[1]

According to Hashmi, women can touch and recite the Quran during their menstrual periods, wearing gloves (either when learning Quran from a teacher or teaching Quran to others), traditionally considered prohibited.[10][11]

Hashmi encourages her followers, mostly well-to-do Pakistani women, to interpret the Qur'an for themselves, but her critics argue that "Hashmi's talks center around personal and family development, rather than community service," instead of using their knowledge to improve their social conditions.[12]

Media reception[edit]

One Canadian newspaper criticized her for being elitist and observed that the "moderate Muslims of Canada call her Wahhabi because of her unbending doctrines."[2] Raheel Raza, writing in American Thinker on 8 November 2008, stated that she "is known for promoting a very conservative Islamic ideology that is based on Wahhabism. She is in favor of Sharia in Canada."[13]

Hashmi has also been featured in the yearly publication of "The Muslim 500 - The 500 Most Influential Muslims."[14]


  1. ^ a b c "Farhat Hashmi operating in Canada". Daily Times (Washington). May 6, 2005. Retrieved 12 March 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Editorial: ‘Pakistani factor’ in Canada terrorism
  3. ^ a b Dr Farhat Hashmi - At a glance
  4. ^ Courtney Bender, Wendy Cadge, Peggy Levitt, David Smilde, Religion on the Edge: De-centering and Re-centering the Sociology of Religion, p 170. ISBN 0199986991
  5. ^ Akbar S Ahmed, Tamara Sonn, The SAGE Handbook of Islamic Studies, p 220. ISBN 1446264521
  6. ^ John L. Esposito, The Future of Islam, p 125. ISBN 019974596X
  7. ^ Farhat Hashmi told to leave Canada
  8. ^ John L. Esposito, The Future of Islam, p 125 - 126. ISBN 019974596X
  9. ^ Is Taqleed the only option for the common person?
  10. ^ (Pakistan) Daily Times, March 17, 2001
  11. ^ "A controversial role model for Pakistani women" in South Asian Multidisciplinary Academic Journal (SAMAJ) by Faiza Mushtaq in issue 4, 2010
  12. ^ "Awakening Islam", in Fort Worth Weekly by Shomial Ahmad on 15 April 2009
  13. ^ The Islamist Role in the 2008 Canadian Elections
  14. ^ "Hashmi, Dr Farhat | The Muslim 500". themuslim500.com. Retrieved 2015-10-12. 

External links[edit]