After the tragic failure of the War of Independence in 1857, the Muslims of the Indian Subcontinent found themselves in a grave economic, political and cultural crisis. The British imperialism took control of the whole of the Mughal Empire and adopted measures to consolidate and perpetuate its mastery over South Asia. It took every possible step to create disunity, confusion and a defeatist mentality in the local pupulation and particularly among the Muslims. Based on a long and deep study of the Indian scene, the new policy designed by the colonial masters included attempts to raise pseudo-religious leaders to work for the interests of the colonizer in a religious garb.
In pursuance of this diabolical design the fertile British mind found in a remote village of East Punjab called Qadian, one Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, a non-entity at that time. He was raised to project himself as a religious saviour who claimed promises to deliver the Indian Muslims from the agony and dismay from which they were suffering. In order to build his personality he started writing in the local press and criticizing different religions. With the passage of time he began to lay foundatitons of a movement, subsequently known as the Qadiani or the Ahmadi movement, and astutely served the cause of British imperialism in India and abroad. The linchpin of the whole crusade was the propaganda against Jihad, the belief which had been motivating the Indian Muslim to rise against the British colonialism in India. The other underlying objective was the inculcation of a spirit of loyalty for the British rule and its acceptance as a divine blessings for the Muslims of India. The whole jugglery of the Mirza revolved around these two thems. His ridiculous revelations and prophjecies directly or indirectly convey these two messages. The Mirza moved swiftly from the claim of a reformer to Mujaddid and then to the so-called ‘Promised Messiah’ and finally had the audacity to lay claim to prophethood. All this took place in accordance with a well-planned strategy to serve the interests of his mentors. It is most likely that he was inspired by his contemporary movement, Bahaism, masterminded by the Russian Czarists in Iran. Both these movements are flourishing in Israel now.
In the present study the author, Mr. Bashir Ahmad, traces the history of the Qadiani movement from its birth up to the present day and unveils its relations with the British imperialism and Zionism. The Ahmadi’s role in Pakistan movement and afterwards has also been discussed at length. The study provides a good political perspective on the growth of the movement and its machinations against the Muslim interest throughout these decades. The author has taken pains to record the facts of history in an objective way. It is a well-documented book which successfully traces the political history of the Ahmadi movement. The author has at his credit another good book on Bahaism which was well-received by the scholars and students of contemporary religious history of the Middle East. I hope this book will equally be a welcome volume by those interested in the study of comparative religions.
I congratulate the learned author on the production of this timely work and pray Almighty Allah to grant him success both in this world and in the Hereafter.
Dr. MAHMOOD A.GHAZI
Dawah Academy, Islamabad
13th April 1994