Mufti Taqi Usmani on Maulana Saad

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On 2024, April 23, Mufti Taqi Usmani sent a letter criticising Maulana Saad for his mistakes especially claiming something that Mufti Taqi Usmani did not say. On 14 May 2024, after the letter went public, Maulana Saad finally replied to Mufti Taqi’s letter.

Mufti Taqi Usmani’s Letter to Maulana Saad

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Below is a full English translation of the Urdu letter issued on 23 April 2024.

Download the full Urdu letter here.

Key summary:

  • Mufti Taqi explains why he has made the letter public since Maulana Saad has used his name to spread his ideology publicly.
  • Mufti Taqi reprimands Maulana Saad for claiming that Gasht is Fardh Ayn (compulsory).
  • Mufti Taqi corrects Maulana Saad for making this claim based on quoting and misinterpreting Mufti Taqi’s book
  • Mufti Taqi admonishes Maulana Saad not to exaggerate (Ghuloo) in his views regarding Da’wa

[Page 1]

[From Mufti Taqi Usmani]

Respected and honourable Maulana Saad,

Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakaatuh,

I hope you are in good health. Based on my personal relationship with you, I have corresponded with you occasionally on various issues. However, the reason for sending this letter now is that some brothers have sent me several of your speeches, both in audio and written forms. In these speeches, you have incorrectly attributed to me the statement that “Individual Da’wa is obligatory (Fardh A’yn) upon every Muslim”. This incorrect attribution has been made in several of your speeches. Moreover, one such speech delivered during the event of the “Quarterly Mashwara” which happened from 27 to 30 January 2024, has been published in a book named “Irshaadaat-E-Akabir (Speeches of Akaabir)”. In that book, the following has been written: 

  • “May Allah keep His Eminence Mufti Taqi Usmani, blessed with long life and good health. He made a very good point, -why are you arguing?- there are two aspects of Tabligh (propagation of deen) one is Individual (Inferadi) and another is Collective (Ijtimai). One is Fardh A’yn and the other is Fardh Kifayah. The Fardh A’yn one is the individual (Inferadi) Da’wa and every Muslim must invite others individually.” – (Irshaadaat-E-Akabir, page: 163)
  • Mufti Taqi Usmani, may he live longer with good health and his guidance be with us forever, says that the Da’wa, Individual (Inferadi) Da’wa, is Fardh A’yn upon each person” ….. “And I think due to this narration “Whoever among you sees an evil must change it with his hand, “Mufti Taqi Usmani states that Individual (Inferadi) Da’wa is Fardh A’yn upon each believer, He has clarified this matter that Da’wa is not Fardh Kifayah (communal obligation). – Taken from (Maulana Saad’s) Fajr Bayan dated 2023 May 13 

[Page 2]

  • “His Eminence (referring to Mufti Taqi Usmani), may Allah grant him a good reward, says that there are two aspects of Tabligh: one is a personal obligation (Fardh A’yn), and the other is a communal obligation (Fardh Kifayah). To personally invite every other Muslim is the personal obligation (Fardh A’yn) for each Mu’min” – Taken from Bayan dated 2023 September 15.

Then in many of your statements, the explanation you made on this topic leads to the conclusion that it is a personal obligation (Fardh A’yn) of every Muslim to go and personally invite each Muslim, and in some (more direct) statements, the method of Gasht has been exclusively mentioned as necessary for observance of this obligation.  This conclusion can be drawn from the following excerpt:

  • “I have stated that the personal invitation (Inferadi Da’wa) was a common practice of the Prophet SAW and his Sahaba. They would sit one-on-one, go to each individual personally- going to each individual and sitting with each person (was their regular practice).” (Excerpt from the speech of 2019/19/8 after Fajr)
  • “Collective Da’wa (Ijtemai Da’wa) is an honorary task, whereas individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) was the obligations of the Prophets (Alayhimus Salam). The divine assistance that comes with individual Da’wa will not come through collective speeches (Ijtemai Bayaans). Rather, His Eminence (Hazrat) used to say that your collective speeches will be effective and your words will be accepted by people only when your collective speeches are followed by your individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa). That’s why we have Bayan after Gasht. Without individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa), a collective Da’wa (Ijtemai Da’wa) will not be effective.”
  • “If it is said that without Gasht Iman is not complete, then it is neither an exaggeration nor beyond bounds. …… The subject of Gasht pertains to enjoining good and forbidding evil (Amr bil-maroof wa Nahi A’nil-Munkar), and when these two obligations are the subject of Gasht and fulfilling these duties from one’s own being is necessary for faith in Allah, then how can faith be completed without Gasht?”

[Page 3]

  • “I believe that the necessity a Muslim has for Imaan is a similar necessity he has for Gasht. This is because the purpose of Gasht (visiting) and meeting (with others) is: I am performing Gasht by myself to fulfil my personal obligation of enjoining good (Amr-bil-maroof).” – Taken from a speech delivered in Malaysia Ijtema, 2022/10/21

In this regard, it seems that you have probably taken the statement about the obligation of individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) from my book entitled “Islaahi Khutubaat (Reformative Speeches)”, which is referred in the book titled as ‘Irshaadaat-E-Akabir‘. However, I have explained the meaning of individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) there in detail which is quoted below: 

“When one person sees another person involved in such and such sin, and evil or neglecting a necessary duty (of Deen), then individually informing that person to abandon that evil and to perform good deeds instead is called individual Da’wa and Tabligh (Inferadi Da’wa and Tabligh). 

The other is called collective (Ijtimai) Da’wa and Tabligh, which means that a person speaks about Deen in front of a large assembly, gives a sermon, teaches them or goes to others to deliver and spread the message of Deen, like how the way members of our Tablighi Jamaat spread the message of Deen by going to people’s homes and shops. These are collective (Ijtimai) Da’wa. The rules and etiquettes of these two methods of Da’wa and Tabligh are separate and distinct.

Collective (Ijtimai) Da’wa is not a personal obligation (Fardh A’yn), but a communal obligation (Fardh Kifayah), so it is not obligatory for every Muslim to go and preach to others or to go to others’ homes to preach, because it is a communal obligation (Fardh Kifayah).” (Islaahi Khutubaat: Vol: 8, Page: 29)

[Page 4]

In this book, the clear meaning of individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) has been described in detail, and the summary of which is mentioned in the following saying of the Prophet SAW:

عن عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ عُمَرَ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا، أَنَّهُ سَمِعَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُولُ: «كُلُّكُمْ رَاعٍ وَمَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ، فَالْإِمَامُ رَاعٍ وَهُوَ مَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ، وَالرَّجُلُ فِي أَهْلِهِ رَاعٍ وَهُوَ مَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ، وَالْمَرْأَةُ فِي بَيْتِ زَوْجِهَا رَاعِيَةٌ وَهِيَ مَسْئُولَةٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهَا ، وَالخَادِمُ فِي مَالِ سَيِّدِهِ رَاعٍ وَهُوَ مَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ»، قَالَ: فَسَمِعْتُ هَؤُلَاءِ مِنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، وَأَحْسِبُ النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ: «وَالرَّجُلُ فِي مَالِ أَبِيهِ رَاعٍ وَهُوَ مَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ، فَكُلُّكُمْ رَاعٍ وَكُلُّكُمْ مَسْئُولٌ عَنْ رَعِيَّتِهِ

Narrated by Abdullah ibn Umar RA, he heard the Messenger of Allah SAW saying: “Each of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. The Imam is a shepherd and he is responsible for his flock. A man in his family is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. A woman in her husband’s house is a shepherd and she is responsible for her flock, and the servant in the property of his master is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock.” He said: “I heard these from the Messenger of Allah SAW and I believe that the Prophet SAW also said: “A man in his father’s wealth is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. So, all of you are shepherds and each of you is responsible for his flock.'” (Sahih Bukhari 120/3)

The summary is: the meaning of individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) which is mentioned as a personal obligation (Fardh A’yn) is – every person must command good and forbid evil to those under him (i.e. within his supervision). If he sees a person or some person (under him) performing any specific sin, he should invite them to good as much as he can. As it is mentioned in the well-known hadith ‘Whoever among you sees an evil…’

This Hadith never means that it is a personal obligation (Fardh A’yn) for every person to go from house to house to invite others, as it might have been implied from your above-mentioned speeches. 

Even If a specific act is to be declared as Fardh A’yn, Firstly, this is an issue of Islamic Jurisprudence (Fiqhi Mas’alah) that must be substantiated in the light of the Quran, Sunnah, and the sayings of the Islamic Jurists (Fuqahaa) of the Ummah, and Contemporary scholars or Muftis must also issue Verdicts (Fatwa) concerning this. Declaring something as Fardh A’yn in public lectures is inappropriate. Secondly, when Sharia declares some act to be Fardh A’yn then it also defines the limits of that action and to what extent the A’mal is considered fulfilled. (For example), Salat (prayers) is Fardh A’yn. It has been specified that praying five times a day will fulfill this obligation. Similarly, fasting is Fardh A’yn and fasting in the month of Ramadaan will fulfill this obligation. Zakat too, is Fardh and giving one-fortieth portion will fulfill this obligation. Hajj is Fardh, and performing Hajj in a lifetime will be sufficient to fulfill this obligation.

[Page 5]

The question is- if it is Fardh A’yn to give Da’wa by visiting each Muslim in their homes or by doing Gasht, then what is the limit and quantity for that? How many people should a person invite to fulfill this responsibility? How many Gasht? How many times per year? How many times per month? How many times per week? And each time for how long should these A’mal be performed so that the responsibility is complete? It is evident that you have not specified any such limit nor such a limit can be drawn. Therefore,  regarding it as Fardh A’yn  can not be accepted by any means.

Alhamdulillah Tablighi Jamaa’t as a whole is performing very praiseworthy work, and to motivate to participate in this work is very virtuous- by the mercy of Allah Ta’ala we also motivate Muslims to participate in this work. However, for this motivation is it necessary to specifically regard the contemporary method to be Fardh A’yn?  It is a matter of regret that different speakers from the (Tablighi) Jamaa’t exceed the limit in this matter, and the elders of the Jama’at have been notified by respected Senior scholars (Akaabir Ulamaye Kiram) several times about this matter. However, the news of these types of exceeding limits are reached (to us) every so often, due to which it is feared that – May Allah protect- this jama’at may turn into a sect (Firqah).

It is possible that you will say that you have not mentioned clearly that this specified method is Fardh A’yn, however the general mass will get that understanding by these speeches.

I am often informed about these types of generalized speeches, and I have refuted these in some of my speeches or writings. However, when this saying is incompletely- rather wrongly attributed towards me and also they have been published, I thus find it necessary to openly deny this attribution towards me and clarify the situation. 

I have previously presented written opinions about several of your statements and speeches, but I have never published those writings publicly before because the intent was a piece of brotherly advice. You have also announced retractions (Rujo’o) from some of those points. However, since an explanation regarding individual Da’wa (Inferadi Da’wa) has been incorrectly attributed to me which was not my intention, moreover that has been widely spread, therefore, I am sending this (open) letter to those who have asked me about it.

Wassalam
Muhammad Taqi Usmani
1445, Shawwal, 14

2024, April, 23

Maulana Saad’s Response

After the letter went viral, Maulana Saad issued an official response on 2024 May 14. Below is the Urdu text and translation.

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Respected and esteemed mentor, Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, may Allah perpetuate His blessings upon you, and may Allah SWT enhance us through your knowledge and extend your life. Peace be upon you, and Allah’s mercy and blessings,

I hope you are in good health and well-being. Based on my heartfelt connection with you, I have been corresponding with you on various issues, and you have honoured me with your valuable advice and corrections. The purpose of sending this letter is that some friends have sent me a written form of one of your speeches, in which it is attributed to me that individual invitation (dawah) is a personal obligation (fard ‘ayn) for a Muslim, and it is said that I have attributed this to you. The meaning I have understood is that invitation (Da’wah) is a personal obligation for every believer, not a collective duty Fard Kifayah). That is, every Muslim must go himself to invite, and the topic of Gash is also about enjoining good and forbidding evil (Amar Bil Ma’ruf wa Nahi Anil Munkar).

In this regard, I would like to clarify that you have stated that individual Da’wah is a personal obligation (Fard ‘Ayn), and you have explained that every person must command good to those under their authority and forbid them from evil. Moreover, if someone sees an individual or a group committing a specific evil in front of them, they should invite them to do good to the best of their ability, as stated in the famous hadith, “Whoever among you sees an evil…”. I also understand individual dawah as a personal obligation with this meaning and explanation. Furthermore, I do not consider the current practices of Da’wah and its methods as a personal obligation but as one of the ways to fulfil this duty and as a specific aid and support for it.

If I have misunderstood your intention, I sincerely apologize. I also hope to continue to receive your attention and guidance in the future. My prayer is that Allah keeps you healthy and well for a long time and grants the entire Ummah the ability to benefit from your knowledge, blessings, and virtues. Ameen.

Sincerely,

Muhammad Saad

Center, Bangla Wali Masjid, Basti Hazrat Nizamuddin, New Delhi 136

Mufti Isa Qasmi criticises Maulana Saad’s Response

Mufti Isa Zaid Qasmi from Darul Uloom Deoband has criticised Maulana Saad’s response letter in an audio (https://youtu.be/Z00KsoJ2FPw?si=m42knPD9tkY4FOza). 

Maulana Saad was criticised for having a bad track record for breaking promises. His recent response used a tone similar to his previous responses where he promises not to repeat his mistakes, but continues to repeat the controversial statements later on.

Below is the Full Audio transcription: 

(Note: Mufti Isa is commenting as an individual Mufti. This is NOT an official response from Darul Uloom Deoband)

**In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful**

“The scholar (Maulana Saad) clarifies that he does not hold any specific or erroneous views and admits any mistakes he might have made. He promises not to repeat such statements in the future. However, in his statements, he is reiterating the same controversial views.”

Initially, when he was warned by Darul Uloom Deoband, he agreed not to repeat his mistakes. In his recent statements, we see the same controversial views being made. Therefore, it is clear that despite making promises, he still continues to propagate these views.

We saw this in January 2017. The scholar (Maulana Saad) wrote a detailed and commendable statement, retracting any statements that could be misinterpreted as devaluing other fields of Islamic work or causing inconvenience to specific groups. He assured that such impressions would not be created in the future.

However, his subsequent statements in 2018 and 2019 failed to demonstrate this. Thus so, Darul Uloom Deoband issued a stricter fatwa in 2023. They adopted a strong position against the scholar’s (Maulana Saad) views. They clarified that listening to or propagating such statements is not permissible. Although the scholar (Maulana Saad) had earlier admitted his mistakes and promised not to repeat them, his later statements show that he did not hold to his promise. This was why, it was necessary for Darul Uloom Deoband to address these issues more firmly.

Shaykh al-Islam Mufti Taqi Usmani (may Allah protect him) mentioned that even if the scholar (Maulana Saad) did not explicitly state that a particular method was obligatory, the general impression from his statements suggested otherwise.

In conclusion, if the scholar (Maulana Saad) sincerely admits his mistake and refrains from making such statements in the future, the issue can be resolved. However, if he continues to repeat these points, it creates problems for other fields of Islamic work and causes unnecessary conflicts among scholars. Thus, it is essential to address and rectify these issues to maintain harmony and respect among the scholarly community.

Maulana Saad’s track record of making many false quotes from Maulana Ilyas and Maulana Yusuf

According to Maulana Shahed Saharanpuri, for years, Maulana Saad has made many false quotes saying that it was said by Maulana Ilyas RA and Maulana Yusuf RA.

Maulana Shahed Saharanpuri was a long-time Muqeem of Nizamuddin, a close companion of Maulana Zubair and the grandson and Khalifa of Sheikh Zakariyya RA. He mentions in his book Ahwal Wa Atsaar Page 425, Link here:

“In the last twenty to twenty-two years, countless quotes and sayings have been falsely attributed to Maulana Ilyas RA and Maulana Yusuf RA from the pulpit. All these false quotes were mostly baseless. This is the reason why thankfully, such quotes failed to spread in the Markaz.”

Source: Ahwal Wa Atsar, Page 425

List of Maulana Saad’s Controversial Speeches

See full list here: https://tablighi-jamaat.com/en/maulana-saad-bayan-controversy-even-after-rujoo/ 

  1. Ghuloo’ – Excessive exaggeration in matters of deen
  2. Deviating from the Ijma – Directing away from the true beliefs of the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaah.
  3. Self Ijtihaads – Personal deductions from the Qur’an, Hadith and Seerah.

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