Mawlānā Muḥammad Idrīs Kāndhlawī

By Sayyid Mahbub Rizwi
Translated by Prof. Murtaz Husayn F. Qurayshi

He was born in A.H. 1318. His early education took place in Khanqah-e Ashrafiya, Thana Bhavan. Then he prosecuted his studies in Mazahir-e Ulum (Saharanpur) and studied upto the Daura-e Hadith. Eagerness for more education brought him to the Dar al-Ulum and he again joined the Daura-e Hadith. He graduated from the Dar al-Ulum in A.H. 1337. The symptoms of virtuousness and piety were conspicuous in him from the very beginning. He is one of the distinguished disciples of Allamah Sayyid Muhammad Anwar Shah Kashmiri. He had a special interest in Tafsir, Hadith, Dialectics and Arabic Literature, and an excellent mastery in writing Arabic and Persian verses extempore. He had attained a high place in knowledge and learning, abstinence and piety, and in conformance to the predecessors’ pattern; the signs of piety and fear of Allah used to be eminently perceived from his face. He used to lead a very simple life. As regards truthfulness he was very bold and daring; without the fear of the blamer’s blaming, he would not hesitate in speaking candidly, openly, without fear of or favour to anyone. In knowledge and practice he was a replica of the pious predecessors. The condition of his engrossment in the acquisition of knowledge was such that he could recall completely and readily all the arts and sciences. He was being reckoned amongst outstanding religious divines and high ranking dons. Besides lecturing and teaching he had ample interest in writing and compilation also. On Mishkat Sharif he has written a commentary entitled Al-Ta’liq al-Sabeeh in eight volumes; the first four of which have been published in Damascus. On the science of Hadith he has had another book entitled Tohfat al-Qari fi Hall-e Mushkilat al-Bukhari. Under the title of Ma’arif al-Quran he has written a commentary on the holy Quran in several volumes. It is said that the total number of books written by him is nearly hundred. He used to be always busy in teaching and writing; this zest was so engrossing that he always remained indifferent to worldly goods and equipments.

On Maqamat-e Hariri he has penned a scholium in Arabic which is very famous and popular among the ulema engaged in the teaching-job and the students. His book entitled ‘Aqa’id al-lslam1 on the science of beliefs and his Sirat al-Mustafa on the theme of the prophetic biography are very important works. In repudiation and refutation of Christianity and Qadianism also he has written many disquisitional books.

He started his teaching profession from Madrasa-e Aminia, Delhi, but after some months the Dar al-Ulum drew him to itself where he got a chance to teach books of different arts and sciences. From 1338/1919 to 1346/1927 he served in the Dar al-Ulum and then went to Hyderabad, where he stayed ten to twelve years and continued to serve as a teacher. In A.H. 1358 he was again called back to the Dar al-Ulum and lessons of Tafsir and Hadith were assigned to him. His teaching of Hadith and Tafsir was very famous and popular among the learned. In this way he graced the masnad of teaching for 18 years in the Dar al-Ulum. In A.H. 1368 he migrated to Lahore. In Pakistan he was appointed chancellor of the Jamia-e Abbasia at Bhawalpur and then, from 1952 to the end, he served as professor of Hadith in Jamia-e Ashrafia, Lahore, for 22 years. In Lahore he used to deliver a sermon every Friday which people used to attend very eagerly. He was considered a distinguished and high-ranking religious divine of Pakistan.

Besides children, he left behind him a large library. He died in Lahore on 7th Rajab, 1394/1974 and lies in eternal rest there.

Rizvi, Sayyid Mahboob (1981). History of the Dar al-’Ulum Deoband, Volume 2. Deoband: Idara-e Ihtemam. p. 90-100.



1 This book, which should be read by all Muslims, had also been translated by the present translator for the Jamia-e Diniyat-e Urdu but unfortunately pecuniary stringency has not allowed Maulana M. Salim Qasimi to publish this English version which can be very useful for those Muslims and their families who have settled in foreign countries. (Translator).

Mawlānā Idrīs Kāndhlawī was a student of Allamah Anwar Shah Kashmir, Mawlana Khalil Ahmad Saharanpuri and Allamah Shabbir Ahmad Uthmani. He was a graduate of both Mazahir al-‘Ulum Saharanpur and Dar al-‘Ulum Deoband. He was a fellow student of hadith alongside Qari Tayyab and Mufti Shafi’. He was appointed as the Shaykh at-Tafsir (teacher of Qur’anic exegesis) in Deoband. After the partition of India, he became the Shaykh al-Hadith and tafsir of Jami’a Ashrafiya, Lahore. He wrote a number of works of an intellectual nature, including a famous sirah and tafsir. He died in 194/1974. For further biographical details one may refer to Dar al-‘Ulum Deoband Ki 50 Mithali Shaksiyat and Akabir-i ‘Ulama Deoband.

The Great Scholars of the Deoband Islamic Seminary. London: Turath Publishing. Footnote. p. 60-61.


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