a phrase that Pakistani militant leaders have used against India for decades –
Ghazwa-e-Hind or a holy raid of India. Ghazwa in Arabic implies a war that is
guided by faith rather than materialistic or territorial gains and is widely
attributed to an Islamic concept derived from the Hadiths — a set of sayings by
Prophet Mohammad. The phrase is used refer to Muslim warriors conquering the
radical Islamists in Pakistan and Islam-haters like Tarek Fateh have propagated
this meaning. It is also frequently used as a trope to put devout Indian
Muslims on the defensive. Their loyalty is questioned – will they put religion
first or India?
‘Ghazwa-e-Hind’ has made a noisy return among scholars, security analysts and
rabble-rousers, especially after the Narendra Modi government’s action on
Article 370 and Pakistan’s isolation in the international theatre.
what has gone largely unnoticed is that the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, a leading body
of Muslims in India, has already called out the error in this popular
interpretation. The group has supported the government’s decision on Kashmir.
Mufti Salman Mansoorpuri, a Jamiat scholar, insisted late last year that
Pakistan has been erroneously and mischievously linking the term to their rift
with India. Mahmood Madani revealed this at an Observer Research Foundation
(ORF) conference last month, sparking renewed interest in the theological
interpretation of the phrase.
terror groups, notably Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), have been using Ghazwa-e-Hind as
a Hadith to recruit, fund and justify its audacious terror strikes as a religious
holy war against India. The Jaish and others falsely propagate that Jihad
against India is considered holy in Islam and that those participating in it
[the battle against “infidels”] will be granted an easy entry into paradise.
widely-circulated note by Jamia Qasmia Shahi of Moradabad, Maulana Mufti Salman
Mansoorpuri had debunked the Jaish’s assertions and argued that prophecies and
sayings of Prophet Mohammad should not be used for political or material gains.
War and Claiming Virat Kohli
video posted on Facebook on 31 August by Zaid Hamid of Pakistan, a radical who
fancies himself as a security analyst, said: “We are entering Ghazwa-e-Hind,
the war which was prophesied by Prophet Muhammad.” The video shows him
brandishing a Kalashnikov, as if ready to march off to the “Great War between
believers and non-believers”.
then added: “After what Narendra Modi and the infidels of India have done to
Kashmir, no one should have any doubt that in the coming times. The final
battle of the Ghazwa-e-Hind will soon be fought between Muslims and infidels.”
Hamid may be from the fringe, but his video has been watched by over 13 lakh
viewers. More mainstream Pakistani individuals like minister of state for
parliamentary affairs Ali Muhammad Khan, made a reference to Ghazwa-e-Hind
while speaking in parliament and thundered: “Pakistan didn’t make an atom bomb
for fun and games [Khel Tamasha]. We will show you if it becomes necessary.”
Hamid’s Twitter, Facebook and other social media contents are blocked in India.
be left behind, actress Veena Malik also tweeted a Hadith on Ghazwa-e-Hind on 1
September. In a recent interview to Samaa TV she said: “If you look at history,
Ghazwa-e-Hind is mentioned…. It is also true that there comes a point when
Muslims had to raise their swords and had to fight.” After famously posing with
a grenade and an ISI tattoo for an Indian magazine, Veena Malik is now a
Rana, director of Pakistan Institute of Peace Studies, told Samaa TV: “It has
been going on for years… whenever things get bad in Kashmir you will hear it.”
to home, our own TV studio warriors have been raising the bogey of
Ghazwa-e-Hind. On 26 September, Times Now declared: “Ghazwa-e-Hind a new enemy
of India, will Lutyens believe now?” In India Upfront, Times Now editor-anchor
Rahul Shivshankar spent 34 minutes and eight seconds trying to prove
#ModiRightOnIslamicTerror. The channel said: “Times Now has accessed a
top-secret report that reveals that a new uncompromising hardline Islamic
radical terror group has been founded in Pakistan with a specific aim of
targeting India. The Ghazwa-e-Hind will be launched with immediate effect on
September, Swarajya magazine ran a story on a propaganda video reportedly
released by a Pakistani agency in which the filmmakers had preposterously
predicted that the Islamist dream of Ghazwa-e-Hind will be realised by 2025. It
even claimed that Virat Kohli will then be a part of the Pakistani cricket team
in World Cup matches against England.
scholar Mansoorpuri has questioned these facile interpretations.
Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, firmly rooted in Islam, is a leading body of nationalist
Muslims and clergy in India. It had opposed the Muslim League’s demand for
Pakistan, and since 2001, is effectively using renowned Islamic seminary
Dar-ul-Uloom, Deoband to issue comprehensive fatwas declaring terrorism as
un-Islamic. Last month, it had adopted a resolution backing Narendra Modi
government’s decision to abrogate the special status given to the state of
Jammu and Kashmir.
Hadiths on Ghazwa-e-Hind, according to Mansurpoori, reads: “The Prophet of
Allah (peace be upon him) said – ‘Allah has saved two groups of my Ummah from
the hellfire; the group that will invade Al-Hind (the subcontinent) and the
group that will be with Eesa (Jesus), the son of Mariam.’ Quoting the narration
of Abu Hurairah [the narrator of over 5,000 Hadiths] – ‘The Messenger of Allah
promised us the conquest of Al-Hind (the subcontinent). If I am able to join
it, I will spend on it my wealth and my life. If I am killed, I will be the
best of martyrs and if I return, I will be Abu Hurairah, the freed one (i.e.
Hadiths are a primary source of guidance in Islam. It is unanimously agreed by
Muslims that the authority of the Hadith is second only to that of the Qur’an.
to Mansoorpuri, there are several Hadiths mentioning Ghazwa-e-Hind and its
virtues, but the chain of narrators is weak, confusing and relies upon persons
who are little known in the authentic collection of Hadith.
role of the narrator is key in how the Hadiths travelled down the centuries.
important to understand how Hadiths were collected and preserved. A Hadith
consists of two parts – the matn (text) and the isnad (chain of the narrator).
A text may seem logical and reasonable, but it needs an authentic isnad with
reliable narrators to be acceptable. During the lifetime of the Prophet and
after his death, his Companions used to refer to him when quoting his sayings.
The Successors (Tabi’un) followed suit; some of them used to quote the Prophet
through the Companions, while others would omit the intermediate authority –
such a Hadith was known as mursal (loose).
Rebuttal To Propaganda
argues that apart from the faulty chain of narrators of the Ghazwa-e-Hind
Hadith, it is also spoken in absolute form without any indication of specific
timing for its occurrence. He says, there are three possibilities as to which war
is being referred to:
The battle that took place in the Indian sub-continent in the early and middle
ages of Islam, which led Muslims to take hold of the country for a long time.
Like the battles fought by Muhammad Bin Qasim and Mahmud Ghaznawi. This view is
also supported by the narrations which, apart from Hindustan, also mentions the
Sindh. One Hadith mentions the conquest of Sindh, which took place under the
command of Muhammad Bin Qasim.
The second possibility is that the word ‘Hind’ mentioned in the Hadith may not
be a reference to India specifically. Instead, it may refer to the Indian
region and surrounding areas, especially the Basrah and its neighbouring
places, currently in Iraq. This view is supported by some statements of the
blessed Companions who used to say: “We interpret Hind as Basrah.”
to this explanation, Mansoorpuri adds, these Hadiths may be referring to the
battles fought against Iran in the early periods of Islam.
The third possibility is that the war to which these Hadiths refer to have not
yet taken place. Instead, it will take place during the period of re-emergence
of Isa and Mehdi as mentioned in Islamic traditions.
return of Isa (Jesus) is a core Islamic belief. Mansoorpuri relies on several
authentic narrations to reiterate some of the conditions that are mentioned,
such as Muslims being restricted in Saudi Arabia and Turkey, and the appearance
of Dajjal (anti-Christ). When these happen, Muslims will get involved in a war
and Isa will descend.
above detail makes it amply clear that encouraging the present-day Muslims in
the Indian sub-continent for Jihad on the basis of the Hadiths concerning
Ghazwa al-Hind is completely wrong. That is because the first two
interpretation of these Hadiths do not leave any further possibility (of war)
for them. The third interpretation is doubtful. But if we accept it, even then
the signs of the Dooms Day after which Isa (as) will descend have not so far
appeared,” concludes Mansoorpuri.
work offers a blunt rebuttal to Pakistan’s propaganda literature that urges
Muslims to pick up arms to counter riots and discrimination.
a visiting fellow at ORF and working on a book on Islam and Indian Nationalism.
How Pakistanis Are
Being Brainwashed Into Engaging In War against India: Virulent Anti-Islam
Propaganda in Pakistan In The Name Of So-Called Ghazwa-e-Hind
How the Pakistani Media Twisted Events and Brought In
the Erroneous Concept of Ghazwa-e-Hind In Reporting The IAF Air Strike On Jaish
e Mohammad's Terrorist Training Camp In Balakot
Pakistani Jihadis' War
Cry of Ghazwa-e-Hind Is Entirely Based On Concocted Ahadith: No Religious
Sanctity attached to Terrorist Designs on India
Original Headline: Everyone
misinterprets Ghazwa-e-Hind, but a Jamiat scholar explains what it really means
Misinterpretation of hadith is proven here for war between Pakistan and India.
Let's meditate the hadith verse as below:
حَدَّثَنِي مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ إِسْمَاعِيلَ بْنِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا يَزِيدُ، قَالَ أَنْبَأَنَا هُشَيْمٌ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا سَيَّارٌ أَبُو الْحَكَمِ، عَنْ جَبْرِ بْنِ عَبِيدَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، قَالَ وَعَدَنَا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم غَزْوَةَ الْهِنْدِ فَإِنْ أَدْرَكْتُهَا أُنْفِقْ فِيهَا نَفْسِي وَمَالِي وَإِنْ قُتِلْتُ كُنْتُ أَفْضَلَ الشُّهَدَاءِ وَإِنْ رَجَعْتُ فَأَنَا أَبُو هُرَيْرَةَ الْمُحَرَّرُ .
The above extract is from Sunan an-Nasa'i 3174, in-book reference: book 25, hadith 90, English translation: vol 1, book 25, hadith 3176.
The phrase, The Messenger of Allah..promised..we would invade India, as mentioned here implies it was the message from Prophet Muhammad that the Prophet and his people would invade India. In other words, the battle involved with Prophet Muhammad. As this war had to include also Prophet Muhammad and he is no longer now on this earth, this phrase does not direct modern Muslims from Pakistan to have war with India now. The subsequent phrase, if I am killed, here refers to cases if the Prophet was killed. All these phrases above hint the war was related to ridda war in which the Prophet was confronted with pagans who fought with them. As the entire war as mentioned in this hadith refers undoubtedly to ridda war in the past and the Prophet is no longer on this earth now, this hadith verse could not be applicable to this modern day since the Prophet had died many years ago and that this hadith verse is meant for the war with Prophet.
The same is in the extract below:
أَخْبَرَنِي أَحْمَدُ بْنُ عُثْمَانَ بْنِ حَكِيمٍ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا زَكَرِيَّا بْنُ عَدِيٍّ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا عُبَيْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ عَمْرٍو، عَنْ زَيْدِ بْنِ أَبِي أُنَيْسَةَ، عَنْ سَيَّارٍ، ح قَالَ وَأَنْبَأَنَا هُشَيْمٌ، عَنْ سَيَّارٍ، عَنْ جَبْرِ بْنِ عَبِيدَةَ، - وَقَالَ عُبَيْدُ اللَّهِ عَنْ جُبَيْرٍ، - عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، قَالَ وَعَدَنَا رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم غَزْوَةَ الْهِنْدِ فَإِنْ أَدْرَكْتُهَا أُنْفِقْ فِيهَا نَفْسِي وَمَالِي فَإِنْ أُقْتَلْ كُنْتُ مِنْ أَفْضَلِ الشُّهَدَاءِ وَإِنْ أَرْجِعْ فَأَنَا أَبُو هُرَيْرَةَ الْمُحَرَّرُ .
The extract above is from Sunan an-Nasa'i 3173, in-book reference: book 25, hadith 89, English translation: vol 1, book 25, hadith 3175.
The phrase, The Messenger..promised we would invade India, here implies again the Prophet would involve in this battle to invade India. As the Prophet is no longer in this earth now and this hadith verse is between the Prophet and India, it serves no purpose to use this verse to promote all future Pakistan to fight with India. Bear in mind, this hadith verse is again between Muslims and India when the Messenger involved. The subsequent phrase, If I am killed, in the same verse implies the Messenger would be killed in the war. Again the entire war here refers to Ridda war. As it is for Ridda war, this hadith is not applicable to Muslims in the future since there is no more Messenger after the advent of Prophet Muhammad. Thus, it serves no purpose when this verse is meant for the Ridda war with India due to they first fought with them, and yet future Muslims abuse this hadith to have war with India in the future.