Sa'id Akhtar Rizvi

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Allamah Sayyid
Saeed Akhtar Rizvi
Sayyid Saeed Akhtar Rizvi.jpg
Native name سيد سعيد اختر رضوي
Born (1927-01-05)5 January 1927
Saran District, Bihar
Died 20 June 2002(2002-06-20) (aged 75)
Resting place Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Nationality Tanzanian
Occupation Islamic scholar
Known for Chief Missionary of Bilal Muslim Mission
Spouse(s) Sayyida Fatimah Zahra Rizvi
Children Sayyid Ali Imam Rizvi, Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi, Sayyid Zaki Imam Rizvi, Sayyid Masud Akhtar Rizvi, Sayyid Mukhtar Rizvi, Sayyida Qaiser Jahan Rizvi, Sayyida Zainab Rizvi
Parent(s) Sayyid Abul Hassan Rizvi and Sayyida Siddiqa Rizvi
Relatives Sayyid Hameed Asgher Rizvi and Sayyid Tawakkul Hussein Rizvi

Sayyid Sa‘eed Akhtar Rizvi (Urdu: سيد سعيد اختر رضوي‎) was an Indian born, Twelver Shī‘ah scholar, who promoted Islam in East Africa. He was given authorizations (Arabic: اجازة‎) by fourteen Grand Ayatullahs for riwayah, Qazawah, and Umur-e-Hasbiyah.


Rizvi was born in Ushri, Saran district, Bihar state, India, in 1927. His father was Sayyid Abul Hassan Rizvi and who was also a Hakim[1][better source needed] (Yunani medicine doctor) and a religious scholar Maulana. He had five sons and two daughters. His second eldest son, Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi, lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He is the Imam of the Islamic Shia Ithna‘asheri Jamaat (ISIJ)[2] of Toronto. He spoke and wrote in Urdu, English, Arabic, Persian, Swahili and was also familiar with Hindi and Gujarati.

From the very beginning Allama Rizvi had the sincerity of helping others and imparting knowledge. Since his early days Rizvi would write research articles in Urdu magazines, the articles would be published by the community magazines. When he finished his education and joined as a teacher in High School near his ancestral village Gopalpur, Siwan,Bihar, he would motivate, encourage and financially help school going age children's in the village to attend school and pursue education. In monsoon season he would personally help young students in crossing rain water streams.

In 1959 he was appointed the Islamic scholar (Arabic: 'alim) for Lindi, Tanzania.[3] In 1962, he conceived a plan for propagating Islam.[3]. His plan was proposed and approved at the triennial Conference of the Supreme Council of Africa Federation of K.S.I Jamaats of Africa in Tanga in 1964.[3] and became the Bilal Muslim Mission.[3] Rizvi was transferred from Arusha to Dar es Salaam in mid-eastern Tanzania and Bilal Muslim Mission of Tanzania was officially registered in 1968. The Bilal Muslim Mission of Kenya was founded in 1971.[3] Through his mission he introduced correspondence courses in Islamic studies in English and Swahili.[3] He traveled and lectured to university students in Africa, Europe, Canada and United States.[3]

His funeral was held in Dar es Salaam with two scouts holding black flags in the cortege to the burial site. Officials and Scholars from several countries were present. The Islamic funeral prayer (Salat al-Mayyit) was given by his son, Muhammad Rizvi.[3]

Rizvi authored over 140 books, some of them having been translated into many languages.[3]

The Bilal Muslim Mission had been able to accomplished at lot in its objective of spreading the true teaching of Islam, through the hard work of its dedicated founders. This was achieved with very limited means and resources. Main source of spreading the true faith was person to person or through correspondence and publication of books and its dissemination. People from Guyana in South America to Poland in Europe and from Malaysia to West Africa benefitted and embraced the true Islam.[4]


As Author[edit]

As Translator[edit]

As Editor[edit]

Journal Articles[edit]

See also[edit]

Suggested reading[edit]

  • Outline of Shi'a Ithna-ashari History in East Africa by Marhum Mulla Asgharali M.M. Jaffer


External links[edit]