The Queen, the British Government and the Christian Missionaries were all warned about the surge of pandemics
Asif M Basit
America’s leading scientist and President Trump’s key scientific advisor, Dr Anthony Fauci had warned three years ago about the “surprise outbreak” of a mysterious pandemic. Speaking at a Georgetown University Medical Centre event, he had clearly predicted that the Trump administration would face an unprecedented challenge in the “arena of infectious diseases”.
With the outbreak of coronavirus in Wuhan and then its surge towards the West and then its worst attack on America, the words of Dr Fauci have echoed in the collective memory of not only the American nation but in the well-informed circles of the whole world. Those less-informed (or less-bothered about America) were reminded of Dr Fauci’s words by the media that almost everyone has been clinging onto in the helpless state of lockdowns.
How did this guy know? How could he foretell? Why was heed not paid to?
These and similar questions are crossing the minds of the general public; members of which are losing jobs, seeing their businesses collapse like a sinkhole, seeing children sit at home as the academic year flies by and are having to stay away from their elderly loved ones in these uncertain times.
There is a similar story being told here in Britain. The Sunday Telegraph revealed on 19 April 2020 that Downing Street had been warned by epidemiologists from University College London back in 2016 about the possibility of an outbreak.
The briefing was quite thorough (and quite prophetic in all honesty), going into the finer details of how the series of events in the pandemic could possibly unfold. The bleak picture we all get to see in news, painted by the all-too-real pandemic – four years on – is not much different to what the UCL experts had predicted: hospitals, mortuaries, social services and the economy all overwhelmed, helpless and at the brink of a total collapse. This cabinet briefing of 2016 was codenamed Exercise Cygnus.
When The Sunday Telegraph requested, under the Freedom of Information Act, for the findings of Exercise Cygnus to be released, the government plainly declined.
How did the UCL experts know? For them to brief the cabinet, their findings must have carried some weight! Why was the public never informed of the threat? Why are the details not being released?
So here we are again with the poor lot called general public asking all sorts of innocent questions. “Where ignorance is bliss,” once said Thomas Gray, “‘tis folly to be wise.” How wise of him!
So why is it that any such predictions are put to a side by the worldly powers who continue to march on the weak bridges of their artificially sculpted economic prosperity?
Eyebrows have also been raised on Scott Burns’ 2011 movie titled Contagion; how he was able to only “predict” a pandemic; how he could turn his prediction into screenplay with a level of resemblance (that rubs shoulders with accuracy) with what we see in the outbreak of coronavirus. Scott Burns said in a recent interview that he is being called all sorts of names on social media as well as being accused of “having access to God”.
That the fictitious virus in Contagion, MEV-1, also originated in bats and got transferred to humans, is perplexingly astonishing for mirroring the case of Covid-19. When asked, Scott Burns points to the abundance of real-life evidence that his scientific advisors provided for the plot.
The coronavirus can be novel, but this problem of not paying heed is not. Dr Fauci’s warnings and UCL’s predictions are only three- and four-years old, Contagion is almost ten.
But there was a whole set of prophecies and predictions about such calamities that now dates back to more than a century. All ignored by world leaders in their lust for power, the fake sense of authority and obsession for control; with claims to have mastered everything on land, in seas and even in heavens.
Now let us go back to the century-old warnings given by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas – a resident of British-Indian Punjab – who was well known to the public and the government authorities as one who warned them about calamities that were to befall the world.
The local government authorities of Gurdaspur district, in the Gazetteer of the Gurdaspur District of 1891-92 and published by the Punjab Government, had mentioned Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian as “a man of great eloquence”, “a distinguished preacher” and one who claims “to be the Messiah … directly inspired by the Almighty”.
This notification of the British government came at the very onset of his mission. Hazrat Ahmadas had, in 1889, formally announced his claims and warned the world of the perils that it faced if all wrong was not shunned and all evil was not forsaken. Only a couple of years on, his mission was still in its infancy but was being rapidly becoming known to the masses and to the government officials.
Hazrat Ahmadas claimed that his mission of warning the world and showing the path of salvation was not restricted to a certain region of the world but for the entire world. For this, he needed to bring his logistics at par with technology which was, like his mission, at the onset of its boom. For this, he acquired a printing press at Qadian and started publishing his works.
The first work to be printed at this press was Aina-e-Kamalat-e-Islam, or Reflections of the Beauties of Islam, published in 1893. The contents of the book were in line with what the title suggested and followed by a message to Queen Victoria, Empress of the British Empire. Having outlined the troubles faced by the world and how Islam was the only way to salvation from the calamities that were waiting to befall the flamboyant mankind, Hazrat Ahmadas addressed the Queen in the following words:
“… What is the matter with thee that thou canst not see in the broad daylight? Know thou, O great one (may God help thee), that the religion of Islam is the centre of all light and the source of all streams and the orchard of all spiritual fruit. My Lord has sent me that I may call His creatures. He has given me clear signs so that I may call them to His religion. So, glad tidings to those who accept me…” (Aina-e-Kamalat-e-Islam)
Hazrat Ahmadas, as subject of the British dominion of India, had always cherished and respected Queen Victoria for the religious freedom that all faiths enjoyed under her rule. He would always remind Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs of the persecution that all faiths faced at the hands of others before the British Raj took over.
It was for this respect that Hazrat Ahmadas, as an expression of gratitude, celebrated the diamond jubilee of Queen Victoria in Qadian. This celebration was not by way of traditional partying, but through expression of gratitude to Allah for bestowing a ruler that was just in her dealings and compassionate towards the adherents of diverse religions under her reign.
Travelling from distant parts of India, followers of Hazrat Ahmadas gathered at Qadian where this celebration was held on 21 and 22 June 1897. Speeches were delivered in Urdu, Arabic, Persian, English, Punjabi and Pashto; all to thank God for the benevolent queen and to invite the queen to Islam – the only path to salvation for all mankind.
AR Dard, a biographer of Hazrat Ahmadas, records this in the following words:
“… a congratulatory telegram was sent to Lord Elgin, the Viceroy, on the 20th. A beautifully bound copy of Ahmad’s book Tuhfa-e-Qaisariyya was sent to Queen Victoria through the Deputy Commissioner in commemoration of the auspicious occasion. Copies of the book were also sent to the Viceroy and the Lieutenant Governor of the Punjab.” (Life of Ahmad)
This book was a concise account of what Islam stands for, the reconstruction of Islam through Hazrat Ahmadas as the Promised Messiah, how natural disasters were on their way and how Allah the Almighty offers protection to mankind.
“The punishments of God, which descend on the world in the form of calamities, are for sure deferred through charity, alms-giving, prayer, repentance, lowliness and humility. In the same way, when the fire of an epidemic flares greatly, all nations of the world naturally engage in prayer, repentance, seeking forgiveness and charitable giving. A natural movement takes place to turn to God, showing that it is a natural phenomenon for the human conscience to turn to God Almighty in the times of calamities. Repentance and prayer at times of calamities have proven beneficial for man, that is, deferred through repentance and seeking forgiveness, just as the punishment of Prophet Jonah was deferred. In the same way, the punishment of Israelites was deferred several times through the prayers of Moses….
“People of the world will not understand this matter because they lack faith in heavenly mysteries but the ones who have experienced them will certainly find this truth.” (Tohfa-e-Qaisariyyah (A Gift to the Queen), Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 12, pp. 262-273)
Come 1898 and the epidemic of bubonic plague was, in full swing, sweeping across the Bombay presidency, claiming hundreds of thousands of lives and, as foretold by Hazrat Ahmadas, heading towards the Punjab. He had pointed to this surge of the plague through a tract published on 6 February 1898 and had it circulated widely. (Majmua-e-Ishtiharat, Vol. 3)
In the tract, he urged his followers and countrymen to follow the precautionary advice given by the government and to cooperate with officials in any shape or form required by them. Alongside this, Hazrat Ahmadas pointed out how to curb the ill effects of the epidemic and how to stay safe of more that waited to attack mankind in future.
“The fear of God seems to have vanished from most hearts and they have taken pandemics to be a negligible test that can be passed with a few measures. Sins are openly and shamelessly committed…
“This [epidemic] is an alterable decree and can be can be worn off by repentance, remorse, piety and abstinence from sins; by giving alms and charity; by bringing about a pure change of heart.
“Hence, every person is hereby urged to become virtuous, indulge in good acts and quit all that is bad and transgressive….perform pious acts and refrain from discourteousness. Have fear of the God whose wrath can diminish the whole world in the blink of an eye.” (Majmua-e-Ishtiharat, Vol. 3, pp. 6)
This pamphlet was widely circulated in the general public as well as government circles.
As the epidemic continued to spread aggressively, Hazrat Ahmadas called for a general meeting of his followers, and also any other members of the public who wished to attend, by the name of the Plague Meeting, in Qadian. He advertised the conference and its objectives through a tract that was printed and circulated in, yet again, the general public and government authorities. It also caught attention of the press in India. This tract, published on 22 April 1898, outlined the objectives as follows:
- The public to be made aware of the government’s prescribed precautionary measures and to convince them to abide by them
- Those attending should convey the advice to those not present
- To advise the government to take whatever action it deemed appropriate, despite any resistance from the public
- To advise the government to educate the masses so that implementing the measures becomes more feasible and productive
- To pray to Allah the Almighty to rid the world of the epidemic (Ibid)
The plague meeting was held in Qadian on 2 May 1898 on the day of Eid-ul-Adha. In his sermon, Hazrat Ahmadas spoke on the dreadful nature of the disease and dealt with the objections raised against the government’s measures of quarantine and isolation. He explained why such measures were necessary and how they helped in controlling the spread of the epidemic. He urged members of the public to comply with all that was demanded of them by the authorities.
The central idea of Hazrat Ahmad’sas address was that everyone, be they members of the public or government officials, should turn to Allah the Almighty to seek his forgiveness and for him to steer humanity of the devastation of the epidemic. He urged that while physical cleanliness is vital as a prevention against the disease, everyone should cleanse themselves morally, socially and spiritually also. (Al Inzar by the editor of Al Hakam, Qadian, 1898, being a report of the proceedings of the Plague Meeting)
Hazrat Ahmadas emphasised that such calamities are penalties inflicted upon the individual, family or nation because of sin. He said that in this complex world of ours, even medical cures require the grace and mercy of God in order to be effective; so, “let us turn to Him for help, protection and guidance”.
The report of this meeting was prepared by Sheikh Rahmatullah and sent off dispatched to the press and to the Lieutenant Governor of the Punjab.
The Civil and Military Gazette, Lahore, in its 10 June 1898 issue covered the proceedings of the meeting and Hazrat Ahmad’s address in the following words:
“… The gist of the address was to the effect that Government was actuated solely by dictates of humanity in its measures for the suppression of the disease; that those measures are necessary, that stories that Government desires to poison the people are both lies and foolish and should not be believed for a moment by anybody with pretensions of being sensible, and that for females to put aside purdah in so far as to come out of the house into the open for segregation purposes with the face properly veiled is no violation of the principles of Islam in time of imminent danger such as visitation by the hand of God.”
Upon receipt of the report, the Lieutenant Governor of the Punjab’s office wrote back to Hazrat Ahmadas:
“I am directed by His Honour the Lieutenant Governor to say that he has read with much pleasure the account of the proceedings of a meeting held at Kadian on 2nd of May 1898 and the address delivered by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Rais of Kadian, in connection with the measures taken by Government for the suppression of bubonic plague.
“His Honour desires me to convey his acknowledgment of the supports rendered to the Government by the members composing the meeting.
“I have the honour to be, Sir,
Your most obedient servant
[signed] HJ Maynard
Junior Secretary to the Government of the Punjab”
The proceedings were published in book form by the Sheikh Yaqub Ali Irfani, editor of Al Hakam, Qadian in September 1898. This booklet, titled Al Inzar, was again circulated in the public and government circles.
By this time, his oracles regarding natural calamities, their divine connection and the way to salvation through salvation had become very well known to the government in India and England. The British press would take particular interest in publishing his beliefs, warnings and proposed solutions.
Christian missionaries had known Hazrat Ahmadas from the days of the great debate of Amritsar, popularly known as Jang-e-Muqaddas (Holy War) where he had clearly defeated the Christian protagonists. Intelligence reports back home to the Church Mission Society had mentioned him as “a remarkable man” and confessed that he had presented some “novel arguments” that the missionaries had never before encountered. (Church Missionary Intelligencer, Vol XLV, Church Mission Society, London, 1894)
Towards the latter part of Hazrat Ahmad’s life, the renowned missiologist Rev HD Griswold (1860-1945) had analysed Ahmad’s mission in the form of a book, which he presented it before the Philosophical Society of Great Britain in London. “The Messiah of Qadian” being the title, Griswold read it out before this gathering of the most learned people on 15 May 1905, with Colonel Thomas Holbein Hendley CIE in the chair.
The concluding remarks of his paper call for special attention. Having mentioned how Hazrat Ahmadas, taking it to be the end of times, had prophesied the eschatological signs of apocalyptic nature, Griswold concluded:
“The vigour and enthusiasm with which the Messiah of Qadian, in season or out of season, publishes his own name and sounds forth his own praises, puts us to shame whose holy mission it is to make known the name of Jesus Christ, the true Messiah and Saviour of the world.
“And finally, the Mirza Qadiani’s own impressive diagnosis of the moral and spiritual evils of the day…ought to help constrain us, not indeed to give thanks that the promised deliverer has already come and is in our midst, but rather to lift our eyes with longing and pray to God that soon, whether through a personal appearing in glory to rule the earth in righteousness, or through a widespread and powerful outpouring of His Spirit, the Christ of God may come”.(Journal of the transactions of The Victoria Institute, or, Philosophical Society of Great Britain, Vol XXXVII, published by The Victoria Institute, London, 1905)
The paper was followed by a lengthy discussion among the audience that was left with a mixture of feelings. A Mr JO Corrie’s remarks were the last ones to come from the audience where he confessed that Hazrat Ahmad’s claims “point to a longing in humanity for a spiritual leader”.
He asked the house: “Does not a like consideration apply to this widespread desire for a spiritual leader?” (Ibid)
Rev Julius Richter (1862-1940) was a German missiologist who won global acclaim and esteem in the world of evangelical mission summed up his observations of Christian missionary activity in his book A History of Missions in India. He laid out the teachings of Hazrat Ahmadas and the warnings regarding the future of the world.
He had to admit that “Ghulam Ahmed of Qadian is a … mixture of elements, an extraordinary plant of the marshes, grown in the weed-covered labyrinth of Muhammadan theology, and at the same time nurtured by the light and sun of Christianity. Ghulam is a remarkable man. He writes clever books, and in such elegant Urdu, Persian, and Arabic that he is able to challenge his opponents in the most graceful Arabic literary articles to admit or to disprove his divine mission.
“He has not only read the Old and New Testaments thoroughly, but is likewise acquainted with certain apocryphal works such as, e.g., the ‘Gospel according to Barnabas’…
“He claims to be the Christian Messiah, returned according to His promise, and likewise the promised Mahdi of the Muhammadans – at one and the same time! And it is really most remarkable to see how he justifies such high assumptions…”
Richter clearly mentions Hazrat Ahmad’s claim that “God has sent him in fullness of time, and therefore all prophecy must find its fulfilment in him”. (Julius Richter, A History of Missions in India, Fleming H Revell Company, London, 1908
After the demise of Hazrat Ahmadas, his caliphs continued to remind the world of pandemics, earthquakes and other calamities that could ascend the forgetful world as a reminded of the Omnipotent and Almighty God.
When Prince Edward the Prince of Wales visited India in 1921-22, the then caliph of Hazrat Ahmadas, Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmadra, presented him with a booklet titled “A Present to the Prince of Wales”. The contents of the book revolved around the teachings of Islam and the claims of prophecies of Hazrat Ahmadas.
“… the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace and blessings of God) published a revelation which he had received from on high that diseases would multiply and that lives would be lost: and then proclaimed that God had told him that there would spread … a new kind of epidemic to which the people … would ask with wonder what was going to happen and that there would appear a severe and fearful kind of plague which would spread in India as well as other countries and would strike men with terror and that this pestilence would particularly visit Europe and other Christian countries.”
He referred to the Spanish Flu of 1918-19 to one fulfilment of the prophecy and warned that more would follow, should the warning not be heeded.
Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmadrh, the third successor of Hazrat Ahmadas, addressed a gathering of dignitaries in London on 28 July 1967, reminding them of the prophecies of pandemics and other calamities that could befall the world as an expression of the wrath of God Almighty.
“Let us not forget that this prophecy, like all prophecies, is a warning and its fulfilment can be delayed or even averted provided man turns to his Lord, repents and mends his ways. He can yet advert Divine wrath if he stops worshipping the false deities of wealth, power and prestige, establishes a genuine relationship with his Lord, refrains from all transgression, does his duty to God and man, and learns to work for true human welfare. It all depends on the nations that dominate the world today and who are intoxicated by the heady wine of wealth, power and prestige.” (A Message of Peace and a Word of Warning, Nazarat Nashr-o-Ishaat, Qadian, 2008)
Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmadrh, the fourth successor of Hazrat Ahmadas, made it very clear again to the world that natural calamities are not mere accidents, but manifestations of what Hazrat Ahmadas had warned against:
“The Promised Messiah had warned them well ahead of time and through very clear and precise prophecies had alerted mankind…
“If the world does not bow before the teachings of the Holy Prophet of Islam then God Almighty will pile up disaster after disaster, one after the other to shake and awaken the world from its slumber…” (Natural Disasters or Divine Punishment?, Review of Religions, April 1994)
Then arrived the era of Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmadaa, the fifth Caliph of Hazrat Ahmadas. Exactly 17 years ago, in April 2003, he assumed office as caliph; a time when the prophecies of Hazrat Ahmadas were unfolding at an unprecedented scale. Natural disasters seemed to have to queued up that came Para-trooping towards the world.
Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmadaa has been invited by various bodies of national and international significance in almost all parts of the world. He has spoken to the materialistic leaders and has very directly warned them of where the world might unfortunately be heading to. He has also given them the remedy – the same one that Hazrat Ahmadas had prescribed – for them to stay safe of such disasters: turn to the One, Almighty Creator.
“In today’s materialistic world, his [Hazrat Ahmad’s] words hold even greater importance because people are moving away from faith and becoming increasingly materialistic…”
“We need to understand the reasons of this phenomena of increased natural disasters. Worldly and materialistic people may not accept or understand this, however we, Ahmadi Muslims, should understand that this is an expression of the displeasure of Allah the Almighty. We must inform others that the Promised Messiah (peace be upon him) warned of these calamities a hundred years ago and the only means of averting such widespread disasters was by coming towards God Almighty.” (26 October 2018, Texas USA, accessed at www.khalifatulmasih.org on 25 April 2020)
So the word of warning issued by Hazrat Ahmad, the Promised Messiahas, was there all along. Queen Victoria was aware of it, so was the British government and so were the religious circles of England and America based mission societies.
All of these circles still attend the events where Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmadaa speaks about these century-old warnings and that too in very straight forward terms. His advice can be found in his book World Crisis and the Pathway to Peace, hundreds of Friday sermons, hundreds of meetings with dignitaries.
O great powers of the world! You have ignored the words of a Warner for far too long. What he prophesied is now at your doorstep. It has actually broken in and is beginning to wreak havoc. But it still isn’t too late!
So when superpowers finally decide to pull out recordings of Dr Fauci’s prediction, files of UCL’s Exercise Cygnus and scripts of Contagion, we hope they will remember that there are more files to draw out and view: the works of a warner that are still around just as is the advice of his successor Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmadaa.
I end with the blessed words of Allah the Almighty that he revealed to my beloved master, Hazrat Ahmadas:
“A warner came unto the world, but the world accepted him not; yet God will accept him and demonstrate his truthfulness with mighty onslaughts.” (The Will, 1905)