Khwaja Qamar ul Din Sialvi

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Khwaja Qamar ul Din Sialvi (1906–1981) known as Shaykh-ul-Islam was a Pakistani Islamic scholar, religious leader and politician. He was a Waliullah (Sufi saint) of the Chishti Sufi order; his Sufi convent (zawyah) is located in the village of Sial Sharif. He was also the founder of the Barelvi political party Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan (representing the Ulama of the Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jamaa'ah denomination in Pakistan) and became its president in 1970.[1][2] He is also credited for being one of the foremost and staunchest supporters of the movement for the creation of Pakistan.

Early life and education[edit]

Khwaja Qamaruddin Sialvi was born on 24 Jumada al-awwal 1324 A.H. (7 July 1906), in Sial Sharif in the Punjab Province of British India. He was the eldest son of Hazrat Zia-ud-din Sialvi. He was familiar with the Quran by the age of nine. He received his religious education at several institutions, including ones in Mecca and Ajmer.

When his age was four years, four months and ten days, Khawaja Diya' al-Din enrolled him to memorise the Qur'an in the class of Hafiz Karim Bakhsh. He very quickly memorised the Qur'an in a short span of time. Following that, capable teachers taught him Persian and Arabic etymology and syntax with much joy and hardwork and this capable student accepted all that he was taught with much joy and enthusiasm. When he was very young and was reading the Kanz al-Daqa'iq, during this time he wrote a commentary on a difficult issue within the Kanz al-Daqa'iq in the Arabic language. After seeing it, great learned scholars were left amazed. This written piece caused a greater sense of enhancing the education and upbringing of this student in the heart of his father; Khawaja Diya' al-Din. As a result, he looked towards a distinguished scholar from the Khayr Abadi family of knowledge and wisdom, Maulana Mu'in al-Din Ajmayri. At that time, he was the principal teacher at Madrasa 'Uthmaniyya Dar al-Khayr in Ajmayr (India) and so for some time, Khawaja Diya' al-Din sent his beloved son to Ajmayr in pursuit of education. Later on, Maulana Ajmayri was brought from Ajmayr to Siyal and Khawaja Qamar al-Din continued acquiring knowledge from him. A student of Maulana Ajmayri, Maulana Muhammad Husayn, also began teaching in Siyal at Dar al-'Ulum Diya' Shams al-Islam. Khawaja Qamar al-Din studied philosophy and logic with one of the leading masters of the Khayarabadi tradition, Maulana Muhammad Din Budhwi, who was considered unparalleled in his age in the rational sciences as well as in many other subjects. Khawaja Qamar al-Din completed these various sciences and disciplines from these learned scholars. He also completed the Dawra Hadith with Maulana Ajmayri, who consequently bestowed the sanad and ijaza of hadith narration to him.[3]

Muslim League[edit]

When Pakistan movement began for the independence of India, the Congress was at the forefront whose leadership was in the hands of some prejudiced and narrow-minded Hindus. However, the deceit of the main Hindu leaders had allured many Muslims to their tune and to raise their same voice. Many Muslim scholars, leaders and the learned had become devotees of Indian nationality and stood side by side with the Hindu leaders. At that moment Qa'id A'zam Muhammad 'Ali Jinnah demanded the formation of Pakistan. Khawaja Qamar al-Din – through his light of firasat – perceived the truth of Qa'id A'zam's position whilst great intellectuals of that time could not decide whether the claim of Qa'id A'zam had any acceptance or weight in it or not, or whether it is practicable or not. Khawaja Qamar al-Din, with firm resolve and certainty, announced his assistance and loyalty to Qa'id A'zam in the struggle to acquire Pakistan. History testifies that this man of truth, whatever step he took he did not stop until he reached his desired destination and objective.[4]

The pursuing of a referendum in the Sarhad province was much dangerous as the Khan Brothers had great influence and power here and they were blind devotees of Gandhi. The Red Shirts movement was accepted here to such an extent that in every town and village of the Sarhad province, red flags were waving. If in this referendum the Muslim League was defeated then the dream of Pakistan would have become dispersed and diminished before any interpretation could be given. The bravery of the people who paved the way for the success of the Muslim community in Sarhad, without a doubt at the front of this group, you would clearly see the shining face of Khawaja Qamar al-Din.[4]

In the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, Sialvi donated all the ornaments[clarification needed] of his family to the Pakistan Army. In 1970 he became the president of Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan (JUP) and under his leadership party won eighteen seats in the National Assembly.[1] Under his leadership, the party fared very well in the election of 1970. He was twice nominated as a member of the Islamic Ideology Council, where he worked hard to Islamicize the existing laws.

See also[edit]


  • Anwar-e-Qamariya انوار قمریہ سوانح, A biography of Khwaja Qamar ul Din Sialvi, by Ghulam Ahmed Sialvi,


  1. ^ a b Talbot, Ian (1998). Pakistan, a modern history. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 0-312-21606-8. 
  2. ^ Ahmad, Mujeeb (1993). Jamʻiyyat ʻUlama-i-Pakistan, 1948–1979, Volume 12 of Historical studies (Pakistan) series. National Institute of Historical and Cultural Research. p. 59. ISBN 969-415-034-5. 
  3. ^ The Gnostic of Siyal; Shaykh al-Islam wa'l-Muslimeen, Khawaja Muhammad Qamar al-Din, by Mahboob Hussain Al Azhari
  4. ^ a b The Gnostic of Siyal; Shaykh al-Islam wa'l-Muslimeen, Khawaja Muhammad Qamar al-Din, by Mahboob Hussain Al Azhari