100 Years Ago… – Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II’s r.a. Trip to Dalhousie


Al Hakam 28 June 1918


When Hazrat Musleh Maud, may Allah strengthen his hand, returned from Bombay, doctors recommended that he [take some rest and] visit a mountainous area. Accordingly, Huzoor decided to go straight to Dalhousie from Batala [where he had arrived from Bombay]. Eventually, it was decided otherwise and Huzoor returned to Qadian and settled to stay there until 21 June 1918. 

Thus, Huzoor led the Friday prayer on 21 June 1918. In his sermon, Huzoor spoke very eloquently on truths and wisdoms. (This Friday Sermon will, Insha-Allah, be published by our contemporary, Al Fazl.)

As Huzoor had specified 21 June as the date of departure, after the Asr prayer, at approximately 6 o’clock, with the intention of setting off for the journey, Huzoor went straight to Bahishti Maqbarah [the Heavenly Graveyard, where Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas and his Companionsra are buried in Qadian]. Members of the Jamaat went alongside him. Huzoor led a long silent prayer at the grave of the Promised Messiahas, after which he returned to the main part of Qadian, and passing through Ahmadi Chowk, Huzoor went out of the town to an open plain where he offered Maghrib and Isha prayers. Thereafter, Huzoor delivered a short speech regarding the appointment of the Amir of Qadian. 

Huzoor said:

“I did not plan on saying anything at this moment. However, as per practice of the Prophetsa who would appoint someone as Amir before departing the city, I wish to appoint an Amir. Nowadays, people’s mindsets have broadened. I do not mean to say that people now possess patience, rather people today make mountains out of molehills over petty issues, and this is what I mean when I say that their mindsets are broader. That is why [in appointing the Amir] I feared that a person may become so certain on something and assume false consequences. 

“The Sunnah of the Holy Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was that he would appoint different Amirs. This does not mean that upon appointing one person an Amir already, he would not appoint them Amir again due to their incapability. It was his practice to appoint one person an Amir on one occasion, and at a different occasion, another person. 

“The wisdom, firstly, behind this was so that no one person be given focal importance, and secondly, so that the person appointed should not fall victim to self-admiration. At one occasion, Hazrat Abu Bakrra was appointed Amir, then on another occasion he became a subordinate of Hazrat Usama bin Zaidra. With this wisdom, no one would succumb to self-admiration, rather it promoted the quality of obedience. 

“At times, the Prophetsa appointed such persons as Amirs who, seemingly, had no rank or status; the wisdom behind this was that he desired to instil obedience and humility in his Jamaat, saving them from self-admiration. Obedience among peers is difficult, that is why the Holy Prophetsa adopted this technique to cultivate obedience among his people. Every action of the Holy Prophetsa was done with full wisdom, bearing in mind the Jamaat’s education and purification. 

“Thus, this matter is highly blessed and virtuous, and in keeping with this tradition, I have decided to appoint a different Amir. Throughout the duration of this journey, I shall appoint an Amir for Qadian Jamaat, although I have not yet expanded this to other areas.  Thus, the Amir shall be for the Jamaat of Qadian and not for other Jamaats. 

“The lesson that should be learnt from this is that every location should have its own Amir. Lahore, Sialkot, Firozpur; thus, every area should have its own Amir, rather every village should have its own Amir. In the meantime, however, the Amir will be appointed for Qadian and for the duration of my journey. 

“All Jamaat members and responsible members should assist the Amir through consultation; everyone should live in love and harmony; the responsibility for sending out missionaries will be the Amir’s.”

After this speech about the appointment of an Amir, Huzoor shook hands with everyone and departed on a tanga [horse-pulled vehicle].  

Of those who had the honour of accompanying Huzoor, this humble one (Editor Al Hakam) was also fortunate among them. I have had the great honour of accompanying the Promised Messiahas on his journeys, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira also permitted me to travel with him, and now, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIra also graciously permitted me to travel with him. 

For the Delhi deputation, I was in Bombay, and through a cable I was fortunate enough to be called to also be part of it. Huzoor said, “… so that you do not say that I got this chance in the journeys of the Promised Messiahas but was not able to be part of this.” These were affectionate words of Huzoor. The journey to Bombay was one journey where I could not accompany Huzoor. 

Those who travelled in this journey included Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahib, Hazrat Mirza Sharif Ahmad Sahib, Hazrat Dr Khalifa Rashiduddin Sahib, Maulvi Sheikh Abdur Rahman Sahib Misri, Sheikh Abdur Rahman Qadiani, Maulvi Ata Muhammad Sahib, Miyan Maula Bakhsh (cook) and Niyaz Muhammad Khadim. 

We embarked on our journey from Qadian when a storm and torrential rain were in sight. Slight drizzle started pouring down when we thought that perhaps the journey might get postponed. I have observed from many years of experience that Huzoor’s steps only move forward and not backwards. His unyielding resolves are never forsaken.  

This was the Promised Messiah’sas practice also. During the period when he was involved in litigation with Karam Din and it was prolonged for quite some time, Huzooras had to leave Qadian on a certain date. A couple of days prior to that, it rained so heavily that it became virtually impossible to travel on certain roads as they were flooded. 

The Ahmadis of Gurdaspur sent an individual to Qadian to inform the Promised Messiahas that it had rained heavily and that the roads had been affected, thus Huzoor should not travel. 

In that flood, some Ahmadis had travelled to Gurdaspur with the water up to their necks at times. Among them was Munshi Zafar Ahmad Sahib of Kapurthala, a most sincere friend. 

Huzooras received the message when he had departed Qadian and was on the road to Batala. At that time, the storm had reached Batala and flooding had started. Upon hearing the message, the Promised Messiahas said, “When prophets make resolves, they do not turn back; they do not break their resolutions.” 

Those who spread false beliefs about prophethood [in reference to the Paighamis – those Ahmadis that rejected the prophethood of the Promised Messiahas and his Khilafat] can say what they may; if they have the slightest fear of God, they cannot deny this incident. 

Thus, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih set off for his journey despite the poor and unfavourable weather. After travelling only a short distance, the weather cleared up. It was as if, out of Divine inspiration, the slight drizzle had poured down only to make the weather more pleasant and to prevent the dirt from blowing everywhere. 

The ignorant and foolish people will consider this to be an ordinary matter. But the believers see such occurrences as Divine signs. The believers see a green leaf as a page of Divine wisdom. 

Once, the Promised Messiahas journeyed from Batala to Qadian. The sun shone brightly that day. The Hindu that accompanied Huzooras in that journey intentionally sat in a position that the sunlight would constantly be in Huzoor’sas eyes. But God’s desire had it that a cloud covered the sun and it revived the miraculous statement:

وَظَلَّلْنَا عَلَيْكُمُ الْغَمَامَ

[“And We caused the clouds to be a shade over you.”]

There is no doubt that this happened under the law of nature, but in that moment it was a sign from among the signs of Allah. 

[Hazrat Khalifatul Masih, with his entourage,] arrived at Batala at 11:30 and departed for Pathankot at 1 o’clock by train. Batala’s Jamaat was present at Batala station who departed their Leader and Imam with great love and dignity.

It is a characteristic among the people of God that they possess awe and majestic grandeur, but at the same time they are not fearsome beings. In the company of their servants and loved ones, they are affectionate people who show examples of great friendliness. They do not desire eminence or immense reverence, nor are their actions such that demand such treatment. 

Those who have seen the Promised Messiahas will have noticed that at times, whilst sitting among close companions, laughter would erupt at something that was said, which could perplex an outsider. However, that laughter would be pure, natural and a sign of immense love. 

The manner in which Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II naturally follows in the footsteps of his master and father in showing love and graciousness, although he too possesses awe and grandeur, he never poses as an individual that people should – God forbid – be frightened of. 

Alongside those accompanying him, Huzoor ate food on the train and rested for a short period, before arriving at Pathankot in the morning. 

Pathankot is a gateway to the invigorating areas of Dalhousie and Dharamsala. These day, the surrounding areas have a lot of visitors. 

Huzoor led the Fajr prayer. His tone [during prayer] was intuitively melodious and his health seemed to have fully recovered. After Fajr, Huzoor instructed me to obtain some information concerning the rest of the journey.


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