Coming from every distant track: A group of young men from Lahore, including Sir Muhammad Iqbal, visits Qadian

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Last Updated on 19th November 2021

A series looking at the high standard of morals of the Promised Messiahas and his Khulafa when receiving visitors in Qadian

Awwab Saad Hayat, Al Hakam

Hazrat Babu Ghulam Muhammadra (1860-1946), a companion of the Promised Messiahas, whilst mentioning an incident of  March 1897, narrates: 

“In March 1897, many of us youngsters from Lahore, who were all educated – the exact number I cannot recall – intended to visit Qadian to meet Hazrat Mirza Sahib[as]. We felt that a person could [claim] something by way of fabrication, but if one went to his house and saw him, the truth would become manifest. Thus, we were determined to find out the truth of the claim of the Promised Messiah[as]

“Each of us had noted different allegations which we wanted to ask. Maulvi Muhammad Ali Sahib, Khawaja Kamaluddin Sahib, Dr Muhammad Iqbal Sahib, Maulvi Ghulam Mohyuddin Sahib from Kasur, Chaudhry Shahabuddin Sahib, Maulvi Saaduddin Sahib (BA LLB) [Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Legislative Law] etc. were also in the group [that visited Qadian]. Khawaja Kamaluddin Sahib was already part of the Jamaat since 1894 after swearing allegiance; however, since he used to preach to this group [of young men], especially Maulvi Muhammad Ali Sahib, he also came along with us.

“When we reached Qadian, a meeting was arranged for us in the Gol Kamra [a room which served as a guest house in Qadian]. When Huzoor[as] came, he immediately began answering our objections in the form of a speech and continued until the complete answer to all our objections were given. 

“We looked at each other in astonishment and wondered how this happened. When we came out, some of us said that he was really a messenger from Allah, and some said that he was a magician. Chaudhry Shahabuddin Sahib and Maulvi Muhammad Ali Sahib and others said that he was definitely true [in his claim] and pledged allegiance. So, Maulvi Muhammad Ali Sahib, Chaudhry Shahabuddin Sahib, Dr Sir Muhammad Iqbal Sahib, Maulvi Ghulam Mohiyuddin Sahib of Kasur and I performed bai‘at. Some other people also did bai‘at but I do not recall their names. Approximately 12 or 13 men pledged allegiance.

“After dinner, when the charpoys were set up, I chose a strong and big charpoy [to sleep on for the night], but Chaudhry Shahabuddin Sahib (later known as Sir Shahabuddin) removed my blanket and possessions and took [the charpoy] for himself. 

“Hazrat Sahib[as] came and asked everyone if they were experiencing any discomforts with the arrangements. Everyone replied, ‘Huzoor[as], I have no problem.’ But when he asked me, I was worried because my bed was occupied by Chaudhry Shahabuddin. I replied, ‘Huzoor[as], Chaudhry Shahabuddin has taken my charpoy and I am now wondering where to sleep.’ He replied, ‘Wait a moment. I will bring you a charpoy.’ So, Hazrat Sahib[as] went. 

“Some time had passed and the charpoy did not yet arrive. I peeked through the door of the courtyard of Huzoor’s[as] house and saw that a person was quickly weaving a charpoy and Huzoor[as] was there with a diya [earthen lamp] in his hand, shining light for him. I felt very ashamed to see Huzoor[as] in this condition. I stepped forward and asked Huzoor[as] to give me the earthen lamp [instead], but Huzoor[as] replied, ‘There is only a little bit left.’ Seeing this conduct of Huzoor[as], I was so moved that tears came flowing out. At that time, looking at the blessed countenance of Huzoor[as], I said to myself that his face could never be that of a liar. 

“Earlier, after Maghrib, when we were having dinner with Huzoor[as], I was sat close to him. Huzoor[as] would pick up the cooked quail and would offer it to me. He would pick up the other meat [prepared on the table] and place it before me and would ask me to have it. Thus, I was very impressed with Huzoor’s[as] high morals; however, witnessing the incident of the charpoy at night, [there and then] I became Huzoor’s[as] servant with all my heart and soul.

“Chaudhry Sir Shahabuddin Sahib is now a well-established person [in the worldly sense]; however, he talks to me freely. Whenever our paths cross, he says ‘Look! I still consider Hazrat Sahib[as] a prophet. Although I am not a member of the Jamaat due to my worldly affiliations, Maulvi Muhammad Ali Sahib has refused [to believe in Hazrat Ahmad’sas prophethood].’” (Lahore Tarikh-e-Ahmadiyyat, edited by: Sheikh Abdul Qadir, First Edition: February 1966. pp. 217-218)

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