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Jamaat e Islami
جماعتِ اسلامی
Founded1941; 83 years ago (1941)
FounderSyed Abul Ala Maududi
Founded atIslamia Park, Lahore, Punjab, British India
TypeIslamic Organization
Religious conservatism
Islamic revivalism
Islamic fundamentalism
Shi'a–Sunni unity
AffiliationsMuslim Brotherhood[2]

Jamaat-e-Islami (Urdu: جماعتِ اسلامی, lit.'Society of Islam') is an Islamist fundamentalist movement founded in 1941 in British India by the Islamist author, theorist, and socio-political philosopher, Syed Abul Ala Maududi, who was inspired by the Muslim Brotherhood.[3] It is considered one of the most influential Islamist organisations,[4] and was the first to develop an ideology based on the modern revolutionary conception of Islam.[5] Its founding branch in Pakistan is the nation's largest fundamentalist party.[6]

Jamaat-e-Islami was founded to spread Islamic values across the Indian subcontinent and advocate for an Islamic political system. It was formed on 26 August 1941 in Lahore under the leadership of Maududi, who believed that contemporary political ideologies resulted from Western imperialism, and that it was necessary to implement Sharia law to preserve Muslim culture.[7] Maududi believed politics was "an integral, inseparable part of the Islamic faith," and that Islamic ideology and non-Islamic ideologies (such as capitalism and socialism, liberalism or secularism) were mutually exclusive. He saw the creation of an Islamic state as both act of piety, and a cure for social and economic problems faced by Muslims, which he attributed to Western influence.[8][9]

Jamaat-e-Islami opposed the partition of India and the creation of Pakistan and actively worked to prevent it.[10] After the partition of India, the organisation spearheaded the movement to transform Pakistan from a Muslim homeland into an Islamic state. Madudi's efforts focused on transforming to a "theo-democracy" based on the Sharia which would enforce things like abolition of interest-bearing banks, sexual separation, veiling of women, hadud penalties for theft, adultery, and other crimes.[11] Jamaat seeks to spur an Islamic revival, implementing Islam as a universal religion.[12][13]

Jamaat-e-Islami is banned in India[14] and has historically faced bans in Bangladesh, most recently from 2013 until 2023.[15] Since 2003, the organization is designated as terrorist by Russia.[16]



Founding and opposition to partition


Maududi opposed British rule but also opposed both the anti-colonialist Muslim nationalist Muslim League's proposal for a separate Muslim state led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah, and the composite nationalism (muttahida qaumiyyat) idea of Jam'iyyat al-Ulama-ye Hind and Deobandi scholar Maulana Sayyid Hussain Ahmad Madani for a united independent India with separate institutional structures for Hindus and Muslims.[17]

In 1940, the Muslim League met in Lahore and passed the Lahore Resolution, calling for autonomous states in the Muslim-majority areas of India. Maududi believed that Islam is a universal religion that calls for a single, globally unified government and therefore nationalism in any form was un-Islamic.[18] In response he launched his own party, Jamaat-e-Islami, founded on 26 August 1941, at Islamia Park, Lahore.[19] Seventy-five people attended the first meeting and became the first 75 members of the movement.

Maududi saw his group as a vanguard of Islamic revolution following the footsteps of early Muslims who gathered in Medina to found the first "Islamic state".[8][9] Members uttered the Shahada, the traditional statement of conversion to Islam, when they joined, implying to some that Jama'ati felt they had been less-than-true Muslims before joining.[20] Jamaat-e-Islami was and is strictly and hierarchically organised in a pyramid-like structure. All supporters work toward the common goal of establishing an ideological Islamic society, particularly through educational and social work, under the leadership of the emir.[21][22] Being a vanguard party, not all supporters could be members, only the elite. Below members were/are "affiliates", and "sympathizers" beneath them. The party leader is called an ameer (commander).[23]

Maududi sought to educate the elite of the Muslim community in the principles of Islam and correct "their erroneous ways of thinking" both because he believed societies were influenced from the top down.[24]

In his view, Muslims were not one religious or communal group among many working to advance their social and economic interests, but a righteous ideological group capable of transforming India into Dar al-Islam.[25] He believed that a government based on the tenets of Islam would be benevolent to its constituents and would avoid falling into tyranny and oppression, unlike the fascist and communist government structures that were gaining popularity at the time.[26][27]

At the time of the Indian independence movement, Maududi and the Jamaat-e-Isami actively worked to oppose the partition of India.[10] Maududi argued that the division of India violated the Islamic doctrine of the ummah and believed that the partition would separate Muslims by a temporal boundary.[10] As such, before the partition of colonial India happened, the Jamaat-e-Islami actively worked to prevent it, as he feared the liberalism of its founders and the British-trained administrators. However, when the partition went ahead, Maududi viewed it as a gradual step to the Islamization of its laws and constitution even though he had earlier condemned the Muslim League for the same approach.[10] Jamaat's Pakistan branch would actively oppose the split between East and West Pakistan and the creation of Bangladesh.

During the years before the partition of India, Jamaat-e-Islami stood aloof from the intense political fights of the time in India, concentrating on "training and organising" and refining and strengthening the structure of Jamaat-e-Islami.[28]

After partition


After partition, Maududi settled in Pakistan and the group split into two separate organizations on either side of the border: Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan and Jamaat-e-Islami Hind.[29] Other groups related to or inspired by Jamaat-e-Islami developed in Bangladesh, Britain, and Afghanistan.

The Pakistani branch of the movement has remained the most prominent, due to both their prominence in electoral politics and repression of the group in other countries.[29] In the 1950s, Jamaat Pakistan launched a militant student wing, Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba, which successfully gained control of many urban colleges and universities, often through violent tactics. The student wing, which maintained control in many areas until 1988, marked Jamaat's first use of violence.[30]

The group has had a presence in Europe since the 1960s.[31] The Jamaat-e-Islami parties maintain ties internationally with other Muslim groups.[32]

Since 2003, the organization is designated as terrorist by Russia.[16]

Groups associated with Jamaat-e-Islami


See also



  1. ^ "Jamaat to launch nation-wide 'anti-imperialism' campaign". Zee News. 10 December 2009.
  2. ^ a b c d e Gani, Jasmine K. (21 October 2022). "Anti-colonial connectivity between Islamicate movements in the Middle East and South Asia: the Muslim Brotherhood and Jamati Islam". Post Colonial Studies. 26. Routledge: 55–76. doi:10.1080/13688790.2023.2127660. hdl:10023/26238. S2CID 253068552.
  3. ^ Ahmad, Irfan (2004). "The Jewish Hand: The response of the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind". In van der Veer, Peter; Munshi, Shoma (eds.). Media, War, and Terrorism: Responses from the Middle East and Asia. Psychology Press. p. 138. ISBN 978-0-415-33140-1. As is well known, Jamaat-e-Islami was formed in undivided India in 1941 by Syed Abul Ala Maududi (1903–1979) to establish Hukumat-e-Ilahiya, God's governance.
  4. ^ Roy, Olivier (1994). The Failure of Political Islam. Harvard University Press. pp. 35. ISBN 9780674291409.
  5. ^ "Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan Islamic Assembly Jamaat-e-Islami-e-Pakistan (JIP)". Globalsecurity.org. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
  6. ^ Canada, Immigration and Refugee Board of (5 June 2018). "Responses to Information Requests". www.irb-cisr.gc.ca. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  7. ^ "What is the Jamaat-e-Islami and Why is the State Cracking Down On It: News18 Explains". News18. 25 February 2019. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  8. ^ a b Kepel, Gilles (2002). Jihad: on the Trail of Political Islam. Belknap Press. p. 34.
  9. ^ a b Nasr, S.V.R. (1994). The Vanguard of the Islamic Revolution: The Jamaat-i Islami of Pakistan. I.B.Tauris. p. 7. ISBN 9780520083691.
  10. ^ a b c d Oh, Irene (2007). The Rights of God: Islam, Human Rights, and Comparative Ethics. Georgetown University Press. p. 45. ISBN 978-1-58901-463-3. In the debate over whether Muslims should establish their own state, separate from a Hindu India, Maududi initially argued against such a creation and asserted that the establishment of a political Muslim state defined by borders violated the idea of the universal umma. Citizenship and national borders, which would characterize the new Muslim state, contradicted the notion that Muslims should not be separated by one another by these temporal boundaries. In this milieu, Maududi founded the organization Jama'at-i Islamic. The Jama'at for its first few years worked actively to prevent the partition, but once partition became inevitable, it established offices in both Pakistan and India.
  11. ^ Ruthven, Malise (2000). Islam in the World (2nd ed.). Penguin. pp. 329–1.
  12. ^ Adams, Charles J (1983). "Mawdudi and the Islamic State". In Esposito, John (ed.). Voices of Resurgent Islam. Oxford University Press. pp. 105.
  13. ^ "Jama'at-i Islami | History, Political Group, & Facts | Britannica". www.britannica.com. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  14. ^ "Govt extends ban on Jamaat-e-Islami (J&K) for 5 more years". The Indian Express. 27 February 2024. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  15. ^ "Revival in Motion? The Jamaat-e-Islami in Bangladesh and Pakistan". www.efsas.org. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  16. ^ a b Единый федеральный список организаций, в том числе иностранных и международных организаций, признанных в соответствии с законодательством Российской Федерации террористическими (in Russian). 2 December 2023. Archived from the original on 14 May 2024.
  17. ^ Malik, Jamal. Islam in South Asia: A Short History. BRILL. p. 370.
  18. ^ Adams, Charles J (1983). "Mawdudi and the Islamic State". In Esposito, John (ed.). Voices of Resurgent Islam. Oxford University Press. pp. 104–5.
  19. ^ Historical Dictionary of Islamic Fundamentalism, 2012:pli
  20. ^ Nasr, Mawdudi and the Making of Islamic Revivalism, 1996: p.110
  21. ^ Kepel G. Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam. I.B.Tauris, 2006 p.34 ISBN 1845112571, 9781845112578.
  22. ^ Encyclopedia of Islam & the Muslim World, Richard C. Martín, Granite Hill Publishers, 2004, p.371
  23. ^ Adel G. H. et al. (eds.) Muslim Organisations in the Twentieth Century: Selected Entries from Encyclopaedia of the World of Islam. EWI Press, 2012 p.70 ISBN 1908433094, 9781908433091.
  24. ^ Adams, Charles J. (1983). "Maududi and the Islamic State". In Esposito, John L. (ed.). Voices of Resurgent Islam. Oxford University Press. p. 102.
  25. ^ Adams, Maududi and the Islamic State, 1983: p.104
  26. ^ Mortimer, Edward (1982). Faith and Power: The Politics of Islam. Vintage Books. p. 204.
  27. ^ Charles J. Adams (1966), "The Ideology of Mawlana Maududi" in D.E. Smith (ed.) South Asian Politics and Religion (Princeton) pp.375, 381–90.
  28. ^ Adams, "Maududi and the Islamic State", 1983: p.105-6
  29. ^ a b "How the Jama'at-e-Islami chronicles the failure of mainstream politics in Kashmir". caravanmagazine.in. Retrieved 27 June 2024.
  30. ^ "Jamaat-e-Islami-linked islamist terrorist groups in Pakistan and their role in the evolution of islamist terrorism in the sub-continent - Centre Français de Recherche sur le Renseignement". cf2r.org (in French). 24 February 2016. Retrieved 27 June 2024.
  31. ^ "Muslim Brotherhood and Jama'at-i Islami". Pew Research Center. 15 September 2010. Retrieved 21 June 2024.
  32. ^ a b Haqqani, Pakistan: Between Mosque and Military, 2010: p.171
  33. ^ Historical Dictionary of Islamic Fundamentalism, 2012:p.223
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  35. ^ Mir, Raoof (2019), "Communicating Islam in Kashmir: Intersection of Religion and Media", Society and Culture in South Asia, 5 (1): 56–57, doi:10.1177/2393861718787871, S2CID 158946261
  36. ^ Jamal, Arif (2009), Shadow War: The Untold Story of Jihad in Kashmir, Melville House, pp. 108–109, ISBN 978-1-933633-59-6
  37. ^ a b Kepel, Gilles (2002). Jihad: on the trail of Political Islam. Belknap. p. 141.
  38. ^ Haqqani, Pakistan: Between Mosque and Military, 2010: p.173
  39. ^ Saikal, Amin (2012). Modern Afghanistan: A History of Struggle and Survival. I.B.Tauris. p. 214. ISBN 9781780761220. Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  40. ^ Roy, Olivier (1992). Islam and resistance in Afghanistan. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 76. ISBN 978-0-521-39700-1.
  41. ^ Glynn, Sarah (1 January 2015). Class, Ethnicity and Religion in the Bengali East End: A Political History. Manchester University Press. pp. 188–. ISBN 978-1-84779-958-6.
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  43. ^ "Abul A'ala Maududi Forum - Sri Lanka". 26 May 2013. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
  44. ^ Roy, Olivier; Sfeir, Antoine; King, Dr. John, eds. (2007). "Britain". The Columbia World Dictionary of Islamism. Columbia University Press. p. 93. ISBN 9780231146401. Retrieved 5 February 2015.