Maulana Fazal Karim Durrani belonged to the district of Hoshiarpur. He did his B.A. at Islamia College, Lahore. He joined the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha‘at Islam, Lahore in 1920 and was sent to Trinidad as a missionary in the same year. On his way he stayed at Woking (England) for two months. He served as a missionary in Trinidad till the end of 1924. He met Ameer Ali in 1923 and convinced him to go to Lahore and become a missionary for the Lahori-Ahmadi’s, which he did as he returned in 1930.
Still in 1924, he spent a few months in New York with the object of setting up a mission, but he did not succeed. He was then sent to Berlin. In May 1925, he took charge of the Berlin Muslim Mission after Maulana Sadr-ud-Din returned to Lahore, India. He was in-charge until 1928, when he made lots of terrible financial decisions. He thus returned to Lahore, British-India. He began editing the newspaper, “Truth”. He wrote many books in the late 1920’s and early 1930’s which still exist on the Lahori-Ahmadi website. He might have been kicked out of the Lahori-Ahmadi’s organization on his return to Lahore. He also began working as the editor of the “Muslim India” newspaper.
His final book is published in 1944, his death is unknown.
He joined the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha‘at Islam, Lahore in 1920 and was sent to Trinidad as a missionary in the same year.
He left Trinidad and went to the New York, USA and tried to set up a Lahori-Ahmadi mission and failed.
In May of 1925, he took over the Lahori-Ahmadi mission in Berlin, Germany.
Maulana Fazal Karim Durrani kept receiving invitations from different quarters to deliver lectures about the Ahmadiyya Movement which were followed by question-answer discussions. Afterwards, he wrote a series of articles on the Ahmadiyya Movement in the Muslimisch Revue. These were later published in English in the form of a book entitled The Ahmadiyya Movement. Two thousand copies of this book were printed in December 1926.
In June 1927, Maulana Fazal Karim Durrani expressed his thought-provoking views in an article entitled “Islam in Europe” on the method to be employed in propagating Islam in Europe and the need of understanding intellectual inclinations of the European people. Some excerpts from it are given below:
“In political terms, we, in the East, may describe Europe as a continent which is determined to keep the rest of the continents under its control, but when a person becomes acquainted with the various nations of Europe he comes to the conclusion that people of different races and nations live here: united Europe has no existence. So the methods which were successfully employed for the propagation of Islam in England cannot necessarily be successful here.
We must bear in mind that of all the nations of Europe, this nation has the firmest belief in Christianity. Although they believe that the Gospels are not authentic nor are they the Word of God and that the beliefs of the Church are irrational, yet in order to make others accept Christianity, they have presented it in a completely different garb – a garb of fine example and high ideals. The German nation is the leader of these high ideals in this age. Their research work and advancement in knowledge in various fields soon become the property of the whole world. Thus, in order to meet this challenge it is necessary to be familiar with the new thoughts and outlook of the German nation.”
In August 1927, Maulana Durrani, in his reports sent to Lahore, expressed his views on two important aspects of the Ahmadiyya Movement:
1. Why did the Reformer of the Age Appear in India?
2. The Propagation of Islam and the Ahmadiyya Movement.
He highlighted different aspects of the preaching of Islam in Europe with special emphasis on the importance of the following points:
- The need for moral and intellectual unity in the Islamic world.
- To prove the excellence of Islam in the religious world.
- Exposition of the distinguishing features of the world-wide Islamic brotherhood.
- The fundamental principles of Islam and their comparison with other religions.
During the same period, Maulana Durrani wrote strong and pithy articles in the Muslimisch Revue in reply to the objections raised against Islam by a well-known German scholar and Minister of Education, Prof. Pecker.
The services of the Berlin Mission and the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha‘at-i Islam, Lahore, for the cause of Islam were being appreciated in Muslim countries. In one of its editorial notes in December 1928, the daily Iqdam of Tehran, the following tributes were paid to the Berlin Mission:
“The Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha‘at Islam, Lahore has constructed a magnificent mosque in the city of Berlin, Germany, which holds an eminent position among the buildings of the city. It was constructed two or three years ago and the work of preaching and propagating the teachings of Islam is done here. More than a hundred people from different walks of life have entered the fold of Islam, of which the most famous is Dr. Hamid Marcus. An Islamic periodical, Muslimisch Revue, is also published in German.”
One million zealous Slav Muslims were living in Yugoslavia. Due to the endeavours of the Mission, they started getting Croatian translation of the articles of the Muslimisch Revue and excerpts from the English translation and commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali.
Sadly, Maulana Fazal Karim Durrani spent fairly large sums of money on the Mosque without the prior consent of the Central Anjuman. When the Anjuman questioned his unilateral decision, he decided to return home and, without awaiting the arrival of funds from the Anjuman, on May 16, 1928, he mortgaged the Mission House and the courtyard of the Mosque for sixteen thousand German Marks with the Theoranx Lands High Perthen Bank. Afterwards, he became annoyed and published several articles in the newspaper, Paisa Akhbar of Lahore, under the title “Letters from Germany” presenting uterly wrong and misleading information about his unwise act and tried to defame the Anjuman. Maulana Dost Muhammad, editor of the weekly paper Paigham-i Sulh, replied to it under the title Kashaf al-Ghita in its issues of the 8th, 12th, 15th and 19th of June, 1928. The dispute was taken to the court and finally, in February 1933, Maulana Durrani admitted his mistake and subitted his written apology.
In October 1928, Maulana Durrani returned to Lahore and joined the editorial staff of the Muslim Outlook. Then he started a monthly by the name of Muslim India. In 1928, he wrote a throught-provoking book, The Future of Islam in India.
As has been mentioned earlier, the Mission incurred a debt of twenty thousand German Marks during the tenure of Maulana Durrani. To take his place, Dr. Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah set off for Berlin on March 28, 1928.
He wrote a book about Swami Dayanand. He founded the Tablighi Literature Society and published a weekly called The Truth.
In 1930, he (Durrani) founded Tablighi Literature Society and published a weekly called The Truth. During the same period Quaid-i ‘Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah came to Lahore. A meeting was arranged to resolve the differences between him and Dr. Sir Muhammad Iqbal. Maulana Durrani played a pivotal role in removing the misunderstandings which had existed between the two since 1928. (Creation of Pakistan by Justice Shamim Hussain Qadri, published by the Army Book Club,1983, p.90).
[Extracted from “A Catechism of the Muslim Faith and Practice revised and edited by Mustapha Kemal Hydal]
1. Maulana Fazal Karim Durrani belonged to the district of Hoshiarpur. He did his B.A. at Islamia College, Lahore. He joined the Ahmadiyya Anjuman Isha‘at Islam, Lahore in 1920 and was sent to Trinidad as a missionary in the same year. On his way he stayed at Woking (England) for two months. He served as a missionary in Trinidad till the end of 1924. Afterwards he spent a few months in New York with the object of setting up a mission, but he did not succeed. He was then sent to Berlin. In May 1925, he took charge of the Berlin Muslim Mission after Maulana Sadr-ud-Din returned to Lahore, India. [Extracted from A Brief History of The Berlin Muslim Mission (Germany) (1922-1988)]
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