Q. Your opposition to Islahi Jalsas is well known and documented. What do you say about the “Majlis Siyaanatul Muslimeen” Ijtima that is held annually in Pakistan wherein people connected to Hazrat Moulana Thanwi (R.A.) gather to deliver and listen to talks of Deen, to the extent that even Hazrat Moulana Masihullah (R. A.) has given talks in that Ijtima. Can this Ijtima called “Siyaanatul Muslimeen” not be used to justify the Islahi Jalsas?
A. Our view, i.e. the Shariah’s view, regarding jalsahs applies to all jalsahs which contain the haraam ingredients and factors mentioned by us and on which the Shar’i prohibition is based. Regardless of who had originated an institution, and who had participated in it, the jalsah is haraam if accompanied by the haraam elements. This applies to even Majlis Siyaanatul Muslimeen if the asbaabul hurmat (elements of prohibition) are found in their jalsahs. We are not aware how they conduct their jalsahs. In fact, the centenary jalsah which Darul Uloom Deoband had organized some time ago was also haraam. In the wake of that haraam jalsah, the illustrious Institution of our noble Akaabir Ulama and Auliya split into two hostile factions, with both factions today signalling the departure of genuine Ilm from these institutions. When a fatwa is issued on a practice, its originators are not valid reason for concealing the Haqq by sweeping the haraam accretions under the carpet and condoning the institution simply because our Shaikh, Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi (Rahmatullah alayh) had originated it. The criterion is the Shariah, not the personages.

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