Contents > Chapter 12: The Deobandi’s Understanding of Taqleed > The Reality of the Call to Taqleed


The Reality of the Call to Taqleed

The Deobandi’s call to Taqleed is just part of the ongoing struggle between Jamaats and groups for superiority, else the Sunnah is full of guidelines whereby differences can be resolved and the truth can be researched. They make adherence to their sect as part of the religion and impose conditions on the common folk about which Allah has not sent any authority.


When the Deobandis make Taqleed of a particular Imam, a necessary condition for Eemaan and say that it is Haraam to change one’s Madhhab, they have already assured that a large proportion of the Muslims of the Indian subcontinent are stuck with the Deobandis or with one of their rival Hanafee groups. In this way, half the battle is already won. Now what remains is to make the people believe that only the Deobandi school of thought is in accordance with the Madhhab. In this regard, the Deobandis have issued many Fatawas against their co-Hanafees. For example, the book Kitabul-Imaan mentions the Barelawis (referred to in this book as grave-worshipers, saint-worshipers and the people of innovation) and the Jamaat-e-Islami (referred to in this book as Moududism) under the category of “Deviate Sects and False Religions operating under Islamic Guise.”


And as we have seen in the previous chapters that the Deobandis claim for themselves glad tidings after glad tidings as Rasheed Ahmad Gungohi writes in Al-Baraheen al-Qatiya about the superiority of the Madrasa (school) of Deoband, he says, “It comes to my mind that the school of Deoband has an exalted position near Allah because of the numerous scholars who have passed out from it and benefited the common folk. Subsequently, a noble person was blessed with a vision of the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam), in which he saw Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) speaking in Urdu. The noble person asked, ‘How do you know this language, while you are an Arab?’ He (sallallahu alaihi wa-sallam) said, ‘From the time I have been in contact with the scholars of the school of Deoband, I’ve known this language’.” Rasheed Ahmad Gungohi comments, “From this we understand the greatness of this Madrasa (school).”[1] (Click to view scanned image of the quote)


Finally, they have an enthusiastic group of individuals called, ‘the Jamaat Tableegh’, who have put up a tremendous effort in spreading Deobandism under the guise of virtues of righteous actions.


In conclusion, the clear and unequivocal statement of Moulana Rasheed Ahmad Gungohi clearly spells out the intention of the Deobandis behind calling to the Taqleed of the Imams. Moulana Rasheed Ahmad Gungohi used to say many times, “Listen carefully! Truth is only, what is uttered by the tongue of Rasheed Ahmad. And I swear that I am nothing, but that in this age guidance and success is dependant upon my Ittiba (following).”[2] (Click to view scanned image of the quote)

[1] Al-Baraheen al-Qaatiyah, p.30.

[2] Tazkirat ar-Rasheed, vol.2, p.17 by Aashiq Ilaahi Merathi.