Friday Sermon: Muslims should stake their all for Kashmir

by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Extract translated by Mirza Masum Beg)

28 November 1947 (Ahmadiyya Anjuman Ishaat-e-Islam Lahore)

The dajjal [antichrist] has no doubt been driven out of India, but he has left behind his imps to carry on his anti-Islamic mission and annihilate Islam by every conceivable effort. To achieve this ignoble object, they have employed the same old weapon of creating a breach in the Muslim ranks and used it with some measure of success, for they have been able to beguile away a good few of our numbers causing thereby a shock to our national solidarity. The successors of dajjal mean to reduce the Muslims of this sub-continent to the abject condition of slaves having no Islamic fervour in their veins. There is yet another campaign of killing the Muslims indiscriminately; and if they do not disappear even now, they should be exiled to the last man from their homes so that their extinction may be final and complete.

All these things are happening before our eyes, and you cannot blink over them. The affair of Kashmir particularly deserves a mention in this connection. It is a fact of facts that Kashmir has been made a springboard for the accomplishment of a comprehensive conspiracy. For the inclusion of the tehsils [subdistricts] of Batala, Gurdaspur and Ajnala which are Muslim-majority places and are contiguously connected with the Muslim-majority districts, into the East Punjab there could be no earthly reason. The basic principle of division had thus been enunciated that the places having majority of Muslim population and adjacently situated with other Muslim- majority places, shall be included in Pakistan. But actually, even the Muslim-majority districts have been clipped off from Pakistan. All this has been done in accordance with a deep-laid plot to include Kashmir into the Indian Union and annihilate the Muslims thereby, otherwise Kashmir has such a preponderating Muslim population that it can easily be marked as purely a Muslim place.

At first it was given out that Batala and Gurdaspur will be included into the Pakistan Dominion, but the plot to give them over to the Indian Union was hatched up alongside in secret. It was a clever ruse to keep off the Muslims’ attention from penetrating into the dark affair. They could easily understand that these Muslim-majority places were being included in the Indian Dominion in violation of the fundamental principle of division for the reason that the road joining Kashmir to the Indian Dominion runs through Batala, Gurdaspur and Pathankot. If these places had been given over to Pakistan, the accession of Kashmir to the Indian Dominion would have been a sheer impossibility.

How cleverly the imps of dajjal tricked the Muslims into their subtle trap. At first, they gave out that Batala and Gurdaspur will be included in Pakistan. Then they obtained the Muslims’ signatures binding them down to accept the award to be pronounced by Radcliffe. Apparently, there was nothing to arouse the Muslims’ suspicion so they were completely taken in. On the 25th of October [1947] messages in this connection were exchanged between the Prime Minister of England and the Prime Minister of the Indian Dominion, and on the following day Kashmir was stringed on to the Indian Dominion. This shows that the British statesmen were also in this game.

وَ یَمۡکُرُوۡنَ وَ یَمۡکُرُ اللّٰہُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ خَیۡرُ الۡمٰکِرِیۡنَ ﴿۳۰﴾

“And they devised plans and Allah too had arranged a plan; and Allah is the best of planners” (The Holy Quran, 8:30).

The divine plan succeeded. He raised such people who foiled the plan of the conspirators. In Kashmir itself people revolted against the tyrannical Dogra rule and declared their independence. On the other side, the people of the Punjab and N. W. F. [North-West Frontier] were so intensely moved with sympathy for their oppressed brothers that overcoming all intervening obstacles they rushed to their help and war began in Kashmir. And if this war had not started, the city of Lahore by this time would have been involved in turmoil, and the State of Hyderabad too swallowed up and grabbed; but now they have been obliged to execute a standstill agreement for one year with Hyderabad.

The Muslims’ springing upon their feet to fight the cause of Kashmir is, to all intents and purposes, a providential plan. I enjoin upon the members of my Jamaat [Movement] to attach great importance to the question of Kashmir. It is not unoften that such wars spread over long periods of time requiring huge financial aids. The Muslim army, engaged in war on the Kashmir front, has no government on its back to reinforce them with men and munition. They are fighting exclusively on the support of the Muslims who are giving them men as well as money.

So, it was a deep-laid conspiracy which had been hatched up for exterminating the Muslims. But Providence Divine surely devised a weapon for its destruction in the form of the Kashmir War. It is, therefore, imperatively necessary that the Muslims should summon all their courage and utilize all their resources to fight and frustrate this plot. The Muslims of the Punjab should know it clearly that the Kashmir-issue is a matter of life and death for them in which great powers have maliciously combined against them. We cannot of course advise the Government, nor will they go by our advice. But I appeal strongly to my jamaat as well as to all other Muslims to attach the utmost importance to the Kashmir-problem and let it not slip out of their hands. They should stake their all for the sake of Kashmir. If Kashmir unfortunately got out of their grip, the dreadful Dogra Rule must necessarily be established there, and the same orgies of bloodshed and carnage of the Muslims will be enacted not only in Kashmir but ultimately all over the West Punjab as well, as has been perpetrated on them in the East Punjab.

Just ponder over and think how the cruel campaign of evicting the Muslims from their ancestral homes started from Amritsar and spread with the rapidity of a hurricane to Jalandhar, Batala and Gurdaspur on the one side and to Ambala and Karnal on the other, ultimately seizing Delhi in its gruesome grip. It then swept over other territories of the Indian Dominion lying contiguously with the East Punjab, hounding out the Muslims from the lands of their birth. If Kashmir should get out of the Muslim hands, they would be hunted out and exiled from this place as well. The eviction of Muslims from the East Punjab has already caused them tremendous loss of life and property. The name of Islam has been wiped off from this big tract of land. Mosques have either been destroyed or converted into temples. In Delhi, the capital of the Indian Dominion, as many as 135 mosques have been demolished under the very nose of the Indian Government and several have been converted into temples. In brief, the name of God has been swept off from the surface of East Punjab.

The responsibility of all this tragedy, I confess, falls mainly upon our shoulders. If we had carried on the work of the propagation of Islam in those places with enthusiasm and energy, such a position would certainly have not arisen today. There were two sections of the Ahmadiyya Community. Their numbers were no doubt few. I wish, all their time and energy had been spent on the spreading of Islam instead of frittering these away in mutual mudslinging.

Source: The Light (Pakistan), 1 January 1948, p. 1

Original Urdu text: Paigham Sulh, 10 December 1947, pp. 5–7