Islam

Zie in de rubriek ‘Library’ diverse Islamitische artikelen en documenten van de hand van Mr. Basharat Ahmadali.

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Special album with regard to Maulvi Ahmadali his 100th arrival anniversary in Suriname (23 June 2013): see here.

Maulvi Ahmadali was born in 1894 in India. His father’s name was Mr. Bandey Ali. While still in India in 1911 he studied at a local Middle School in class 5. In 1915 or 1916 he traveled to Suriname in a ship and worked on contract for five years as a supervisor at the lands of a landlord Mr. Sital Singh. Along with his agricultural work, he used to do teaching and preaching of Islam in his own humble way.

At the end of the five years’ contract period, he was free to do any job he liked. But after leaving the job of the landlord, he faced much hardship and financial difficulties. Without finding a job of his choice he used to cut and collect leaves of toli  from forest which were used in the construction of roofs and sold them in villages and cities. But even in these difficult times he continued studying and teaching Islam to his fellow workers and other people. Then he started tailoring work which helped to have somewhat settled life and provided reasonable financial support. So he married Miss Doerkhani, daughter of  Mr. Ghafoerkhan. Though his wife did not know Urdu and Arabic, still she encouraged and helped her husband in the teaching and propagation of Islam.

Shekh Ahmad Ali Sahib spent his whole life in serving the cause of Islam and spreading message of the Ahmadiyya Movement to his fellow country men. Gradually tailoring became his main profession and means of living. But along with this he also did some trading and farming. But in spite of these preoccupations he still could spare time for teaching and preaching of Islam and helping needy people. In short, besides being a businessman, he was an Imam, a teacher and editor of monthly “Haqiqat-ul Islam” for 25 years. In his early days of selling cloth and doing tailoring work, he used to go to nearby villages on  bicycle selling cloth and also distributing literature and doing preaching work. Though he did not had formal schooling, but through self study he acquired quite a good command over Urdu and understanding of the Qur’an. That was why he had been teaching Urdu and recitation of the Qur’an to children, men and women in Madrassah Imdadia Islam for 35 years.

Many of his sons and  grand-sons and daughters became good teachers who not only taught their children but also children of the members of the Jama’at. Some of them are acting as imam at various mosques in Suriname. It was he who in 1934 happened to read some issues of the Paigham-i Sulh published by  Lahore Central Anjuman from one of his friends. So he consulted elders and members of the community and started correspondence with the Central Ahmadiyya Anjuman in Lahore and began receiving books and literature from it. This is how he was able to become member of the Lahore Ahmadiyya community and  increased his knowledge about Islam.  It also became the source through which he was able to have contacts with various Lahore Ahmadiyya centres in Trinidad and Guyana. On his initiative and SIV’s request Mufti Maulvi Ameer Ali of Trinidad and Maulana Bashir Ahmad Minto, Ahmadiyya missionary in USA came to Suriname. These visits created new zeal and devotion among the people and lectures and Dars-i Qur’an were started at various mosques of the community.

Maulvi Ahmad Ali was always ready to defend Islam and the Ahmadiyya Movement used columns of his paper to reply to the criticism leveled against Islam and the Ahmadiyya Movement. It was a  dying wish of late Maulvi Ahmad Ali that a Dutch translation of the Qur’an should be available to the Muslims in Suriname. It was only after his death that Stichting Koran Fonds (Suriname) was formed for this very purpose. This Foundation reprinted the Dutch translation of the Qur’an rendered by our learned Brother Mr. Soedewo of Indonesia. Its copies were distributed on a large scale in Suriname. Thus the wish of the late Maulvi Ahmad Ali was fulfilled.

Late Maulvi Ahmad Ali’s wife was born on 16th January, 1909 and died on 10th August, 1973. He himself died on 29th November, 1967. Maulvi Ahmad Ali was always thankful to Allah that all his sons and daughters, son-in-laws and daughter-in-laws were quite conversant with the teachings of Islam and were practicing Muslims and took keen interest in the activities of the Ahmadiyya Jama’at. It should be a matter of great pride and source of blessings for the late Maulvi Ahmad Ali Sahib that all his sons and daughters are devout Ahmadis and actively engaged not only in Suriname but also in Holland. His daughter Halima Hoeseni, son-in-Law Mr. Shakoer Hoeseni, grand-son Mr. Abdoel Saied Hoeseni and Mr. Hassiem Hoeseni with the help of another very active and devoted Ahmadi  Mr. Noer Sardar and his family have been able to organize Stichting Ahmadiyya Isha’at-i-Islam at Kepplerstraat in The Hague, Holland and have been able to construct a beautiful centre with arrangements for congregational prayers, library and a spacious lecture hall. The Anjuman has been able to produce valuable literature in Dutch on Islam and the Ahmadiyya Movement including Dutch translation of the Holy Qur’an with Arabic text and commentary. Recently it has published Dutch translation of the Qur’an in Braille for the blinds. This is probably the first ever translation of the Qur’an published in Braille in any language. The most recent Dutch publications of the Holy Qur’an by this Anjuman are: the pocket edition with transliteration, and the MP3 and Hybrid editions of Holy Qur’an including the Commentary. The website of the Stichting can be visited at www.moslim.org

Mr. Mahmoed Ahmadali, was also a son of Maulvi Ahmadali. He passed away on April 11, 2007, and he was Imam of the Stichting Ahmadiyya Isha’at-i-Islam, and previously imam of the branch called Moefidoel Islam in Surinam.

The eldest son of Maulvi Ahmadali, late Mr. Aboe Bakr Ahmadali, was the president of Imdadia islam and the founder of Stichting Koran Fonds (Suriname).

After the passing away of Maulvi Ahmadali, his son-in-law Mr. Mohamed Hanief Sahebali became the imam of Imdadia Islam Mosque.

At present Maulvi Ahmadali’s son Mr. Toyab Ahmadali, the President of Qura’n Fund and the former Minister of Social Affairs,  is the imam of the largest SIV branch, Imdadia Islam in Surinam, of which his father was the founder in 1934. The website of Imdadia can be visited at www.imdadia.org and the memorial volume on occasion of 70 years Imdadia can be downloaded at www.aaiil.org

Mr. Riaz Ahmadali who is running IVISEP (Intistute for Islamic Studies and Publication), the publisher of the weekly “Spiritual Note”, is the grandson of Maulvi Ahmadali. IVISEP was started by Riaz’ father Mr. Basharat Ahmadali (the former District Commissioner in Suriname), the youngest son of Maulvi Sheikh Ahmadali. The well known Dutch Monthly “Al Haq” was published by him. The website of the Institute can be visited at www.ivisep.org

The text above has been copied from the 2010 calendar, issued by the Ahmadiyya Isha’at-i-Islam, Lahore. The calendar may be viewed here.

Some additional information about the Maulvi, which was not included in the calendar, is mentioned below.

In the history of the Ahmadali family and the Surinaamse Islamitische Vereniging (S.I.V.)  it is of utmost importance to mention that to save the S.I.V. as a Lahore Ahmadiyya organisation from 1976 on, and saving S.I.V. from falling into the hands of Sunni’s some descendants of Maulvi Shekh Ahmadali played the major role.

Under the initiative and leadership of his son Mr. Toyab Ahmadali, who at that time was the President of S.I.V.’s first and largest branch called Imdadia Isha’at Islam and with the indispensable advises of Maulvi’s youngest son Mr. Basharat Ahmadali, a committee under the name of  “Ahmadiyya Aqeeda Committee” was formed and formalised to start the struggle and save and preserve S.I.V. as a Lahore Ahmadiyya Jamaat.

This struggle was decidedly concluded in 1979 when the election organized by a special judicial court commission was won by the “Ahmadiyya Aqeeda Committee” of S.I.V. After the voting of thousands pro or against, the  “Ahmadiyya Aqeeda Committee” won the election with only 35 votes. Allahu Akbar! So in this way after long years of consistent struggle, with the help of Allah Ta’ala, under the initiative and leadership of Mr. Toyab Ahmadali the S.I.V. was judicially and de facto preserved as a branch of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Movement. S.I.V. was de facto a Lahore Ahmadiyya Jamaat. But to prevent similar problems for future generations “AAII”, which stands for Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha’at Islam”, was taken up in the constitutions.

In this struggle there was an important role for Mr. Basharat Ahmadali for he was charged with the responsibility as director and editor of all the writings in support of the Ahmadiyya Aqeeda. All the propaganda work in writing and printing was done by him in the printery of IVISEP (Institute for Islamic Studies and Publications), where the monthly Al Haq was printed also. In this work he was supported by Mr. A.S. Hoeseni (and some other grandchildren of maulvi Ahmadali: one of them was a son of Mr. Mahmoed Ahmadali and the other one was a son of Mrs. Twahiragatoen Sahebali-Ahmadali). The publicity of the Ahmadiyya Aqeeda Committee through radio broadcasting was done with the help of Mr. Rashid Pierkhan, by making his station available for this Committee.

Additional information regarding life history of Maulvi Shekh Ahmadali:

  • He was a co-founding member for establishing the foundation for Islam in Suriname
  • He was one of the initiator and founding members of the Surinaamse Islamitische Vereniging (S.I.V.)
  • He was a board member of the first board of directors of S.I.V.
  • He was the initiator and founder of the largest branch of S.I.V., called Imdadia Isha’at Islam, with mosque and madrassa on his own property
  • He was the initiator and founder of the S.I.V. branch, called Mufidul Islam, with mosque and madrassa on his own property
  • He was imam of the mosque of Imdadia isha’at Islam and head teacher in Islam, Urdu and Arabic
  • He was the first President of the first S.I.V. branch Imdadia Isha’at Islam
  • He was the initiator, founder, editor and publisher of Urdu Islamic magazine Haqiqatul Islam for 35 years (a page from this magazine may be seen here)
  • On his initiative a reprint of the Dutch translation by Soedewo of the Holy Quran with Commentary was realised
  • He had different governmental offices, such as Official for marriage and divorce according to Islamic law, and Official for swearing of the oath according to Islam in the courts of justice
  • He was an intermediary in the solving of differences of different kinds
  • Because of his services on social and religious field, and his works for the society he twice received a Royal Medal of Honour from the Queen of the Kingdom of the Netherlands: Silver medal of honour in the Order of Oranje-Nassau and Gold medal of honour in the Order of Oranje-Nassau.

Special album with regard to Maulvi Ahmadali his 100th arrival anniversary in Suriname (23 June 2013): see here.