The primary cause of the Tablighi Jamaat Split was the unauthorized changes to the pattern of work introduced by Maulana Saad. Those that follow him see these changes are positive, but the main point is that these changes were introduced without approval (Mashwara).
These changes were introduced without approval (Mashwara)
Maulana Saad himself signed an agreement to not change anything without approval in 1999
In 1999, during Raiwind Ijtema Pakistan, the World Shura at that time signed an agreement to standardize the pattern of the work and agree upon a change management process. The agreement stipulated that the (World) Shura must unanimously agree on any changes to the pattern of work (aka Usool) before they are put into practice. Maulana Saad was part of the World Shura and signed the agreement as well.
NOTE: Before reading further, please understand that our aim is to preserve the history of Tabligh, no matter how bitter it is. As generations come, this history may be forgotten. We do not promote hate, and certainly not backbiting. See our article ‘Backbiting vs Warning‘. No matter how bad a Muslim is, he is still our Muslim brother. We love and hate only for the sake of Allah.
See: Maulana Saad’s Continuous Violation of the 1999 Agreement
Unauthorized changes cause disputes and disruption
Every organization in the world whether it is a business or religious organization has a change process. One cannot simply change processes without proper approvals as doing so will cause disputes and disruption to the organization.
SEE: 3 Reasons Why Tablighi Jamaat Split
List of changes introduced by Maulana Saad without approval
Below are the changes that Maulana Saad introduces without any Mashwara (Approval from the World Shura).
- Muntakhab Ahadith in Ijtimai Taleems – In 2006, Maulana Saad introduced the recitation of Muntakhab Ahadith in Ijtimai (Group) Taleem and Khuroojs. This was his first violation of not seeking approval. There is nothing wrong with reading Muntakhab Ahadith individually, however, to avoid confusion on what book to read, the approved book for Ijtimai (Collective Group) Taleems is Fadhail Amaal and Riyaadus Saaliheen. Regarding Muntakhab Ahadith as a book, see 3 reasons to not read Muntakhab Ahadith.
- DTI (Da’wah, Taleem, and Istiqbal) – Maulana Saad introduces DTI and made DTI the ‘Gold Standard’. Daily home visits were deemed as ‘Second Class’ as Masjids that do not have the numbers to perform ‘DTI’ but only daily home visits must strive to achieve DTI. By doing so, the heart-to-heart da’wa of daily home visits slowly vanished. Above all, this practice was never approved.
- Long Jamaat Stays – Maulana Saad has encouraged Jamaats to stay in a Masjid as long as possible. This has been made the ‘Gold Standard’. Staying for 3 days in a Masjid is seen as ‘pointless’. Due to this, Jamaat will try to pressure the Masjid to allow them to stay as long as they can. Masjid Committees who are soft in nature will reluctantly accept their request, despite being uncomfortable in their hearts. This has brought a lot of overstay complaints and ultimately Masjids being closed to Jamaats.
- Da’wah outside Masjid – Maulana Saad has discouraged people from giving da’wa at other places other than the Masjids (e.g. homes, offices, marketplaces, etc). Giving da’wa at these places is seen as useless.
- Four(4) hours Taleems – Maulana Saad has encouraged the recitation of Taleem to be 4 hours daily instead of the usual 2.5 hours in Jamaat. This change was never approved. While longer Taleems are good, not everyone is accustomed to sitting for long Taleem durations. New brothers may not go in Jamat anymore due to the burden of these long Taleems. A uniformity of 2.5 hours Taleem is important to avoid being overzealous.
- Abolishing Professional Gatherings – Maulana Saad has abolished Jords (Gatherings) for Professional or specific groups of people e.g. businessmen, Railway Workers, etc. This used to be good means to synergize Da’wa with certain segments of society. The abolishment of an important Dawa strategy was never approved.
- Whole Night Ibadah – Maulana Saad has encouraged the practice of whole night Ibadah, where a Jamaat will take turns on a shift so there are people staying up in worship the entire night. While this sounds good, this practice was never approved. It causes difficulty for some people who are not accustomed to this. Since everyone in Jamaat is doing so, such a person out of shyness will be forced to participate. People going in Jamat for the first time may feel burdened and not go anymore. Optional Ibadah needs to come from one’s self, and not be forced upon. Above all, this practice was never approved.
- Changing the Shabguzari Night – Maulana Saad has discouraged bringing new people to the Shabguzari Night. The Shabguzari night has been changed to be the night of Fikr (worry and concern) for old workers, and not to bring new brothers. This was a big move as the Shabguzari Night was always a means to introduce new brothers to the work of Dawah. Such a change would be devastating to the work. Above all, it was never approved.
- Three(3) days no matter what! – Maulana Saad has aggressively branded people spending time less than 3 days as useless with no benefit at all, regardless of who they are. In the past, busy people or professionals, who are unable to take leave from work, were given special leeway to spend less time if they were unable to. They were highly appreciated for doing this; not branded as useless.
- Monthly Ijtema to replace monthly Maswara – Maulana Saad has replaced the monthly Mashwara in place of a monthly Ijtema. The importance of showing numbers has been stressed. Such practice was never approved.
- One-year khurooj requirement for Hayatus Sahaba – Maulana Saad made a requirement for Ulamas to spend 1 year in the path of Allah before they are allowed to read Hayatus Sahaba at Shabguzari Programs (Markaz night programs). This requirement was never approved and ironically Maulana Saad himself has not spent any time in the Path of Allah. Yet, he reads Hayatus Sahaba daily at Nizamuddin Markaz.
- Five(5) months khurooj for Indians – Maulana Saad has set a requirement for Indians going overseas to spend 5 months instead of the regular 4 months. This massive change was never approved. People who were accustomed to spending 4 months every year stopped their practice as they find the extra month an additional burden.
It is to note that in Pakistan, 7 months is required for those going overseas. This, however, was approved during the time of Maulana Yusuf. The 5 months for India, however, was never approved in Mashwara.
- Six(6) months yearly khurooj for active workers – Maulana Saad has started to encourage the ‘Actively Leading’ workers to spend 6 months in Jamaat every year. He cited that 4 months is for normal people, but 6 months is for the ‘Actively Leading’ workers. This change was never approved.
- Five(5) Amaal of Masturat – Maulana Saad introduced the 5 Amaal of Masturat as the new gold standard for home Taleems. The 5 Amaals are Mashwara, Taleem, Tilawah Quran, 6 Sifat Muzaraka, and Tashkeel. One disadvantage of this is the tendency to jam all 5 amaals into a 30-minute Taleem sitting (30 minutes is the standard time for home Taleen which people are accustomed to). The reading of Kitaab which is the main source of spiritual upliftment slowly diminished. Above all, this change was never approved.
SEE: Full History of Tablighi Jamaat: Origin, Expansion and the Fitna