Illustrious Person

Maulana Abdul Hakim – The Pioneer of Islamic Movement and Education

“To walk on the right path one has not to hear the sermons, but to see the living examples of cardinal virtues”- Syed Sulayman Nadwi

History is full of examples set by illustrious personalities. But only few people can have their names written in golden letter, and are remembered for ages. Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) is one of such few great personalities from the History of Muslim Bengal. He is among the few who are cherished for their blood-shedding struggle to achieve freedom for the people of this region.

It is a matter of despair that not much is known about the eventful life of this great personality. Although not much of information could be collected about the life of Maulana Abdul Hakim (R), it can be calculated from the following events that he was born at a time in between 1790-1800 A. D.:

• Maulana Abdul Hakim must have been a matured man of 35-40 at the time he participated in the Battle of Balakot (1831 A D), for he was by then already a “Khalifah” (vicegerent) of Syed Ahmad.
• The eldest son of Maulana Abdul Hakim (R), Khan Bahadur Maulana Wajeehullah Khan Sami (R) established a Madrasah in Chunati in 1887 and died shortly after that at around the year 1900, at the age of around 75.
• Maulana Kaji Ismail is Maulana Abdul Hakim’s youngest son, who was born when his father had already reached an old age. He died in 1960 at around 90 years of age.

Maulana Abdul Hakim’s (R) father was Maulana Abdur Rahim. It is said that he migrated to Chunati from Banshkhali, Chittagong.

From the little information gathered, it can only be known that the famous Historian Golam Meher Rasul mentioned his name in his History book; and that renowned Islamic Scholar Syed Ali Ahsan Nadwi stated his name in his research article, as a companion and “Khalifah” (vicegerent) of Syed Ahmad Berlavi (R). Out of the millions of devoted Mujahid warriors from different parts of Bengal who had gathered to participate in the Jihad Movement, there is no need to mention how high the level of knowledge and nobility is, of those who were awarded the tribute of being his companion and vicegerent.

Syed Ahmad Shaheed (R) defeated the Sikh-Maratha army to establish an Islamic state in North-Eastern India. In 1931, he was martyred with many of his companions in Balakot, as a result of the treachery of some hypocrites and landlords. The ones who survived that fight later segregated all over the Subcontinent and sustained the Islamic Movement in their respective regions. That’s where the various movements (e.g. “Fakir Revolt”, “Khilafah Movement”, “Peasant Movement”, etc.) in different areas were initiated, which later led to independence. Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) and Maulana Keramat Ali Jounpuri (R) are among the others who concentrated in preaching Islam.

Maulana Abdul Hakim’s (R) eldest son, Maulana Wajeehullah Khan Sami (R) was a high-ranking cadet of the then British Government. He is known to be a Magistrate in Delhi. It is worthy of mentioning that at that time there was high discrimination against the Muslims, and except for those who possessed extraordinary qualifications, it was impossible to enter any government profession.

We get to know that Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) had four more children, of whom the names of three could be collected- Maulana Ubaidullah (R), Maulana Eyakub (R) and the youngest, Maulana Kaji Ismail (R).

From the fact that all of his children were well educated, it is apparent that Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) was a person with great concern in education.

In a report published by Chunati Madrasah in 1963, a few interesting facts about Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) were revealed. These are mentioned here with necessary comments:
• Maulana Abdul Hakim (R) was the house tutor for the children of Sultan Shurkullah, son of Tipu Sultan.
          o If this is true, then it is proved that he was a man of great knowledge and virtue at that time, which earned him the honor of the Royal Family.
• He was appointed as the ‘Munsef’ of the court in Chittagong City, but due to his lack of interest in state profession, he resigned from this attractive job and engaged himself in preaching Islam.
          o If this is fact, then this proves that he not only possessed great qualification, but he also was highly attracted to Islamic movement, at the same time having no attraction for worldly honor. Such a great sacrifice is only possible by a great personality like him.
• He established a Madrasah in Chunati in the year 1810.
          o But this is not justified because at that time he was too young to do so, and moreover, the Madrasah established by his son Sami is known as the first educational institution in this region.

The family of this great personality is still known as the family of “Boro Maulana Saheb”, and is still honored as an elite family. However, it is not to be forgotten that such honor is attained only for the great sacrifice and service to Islam and Islamic knowledge. We can expect that the successors of this honorable devotee of Islam will retain this.

Source : Anjumane Tolabakeye Chabekin ( 34th Edition ), written by Md. Osman Goni, Md. Obaidullah , A.B. Rafique Ahmed


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