India’s first education Maulana Abul Kalam Azad has many roads and institutions named after him. He’s known as a freedom fighter, who became leader of Congress at the young age of 35. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad is known as an Indian but he had nowhere been a part of Indian ancestry. He was born in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. His family shifted to Calcutta after two years of his birth.

While Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was known as the icon of the Hindu-Muslim unity narrative. He is praised for establishing the foundations for Indian education, known as a fervent nationalist, and the personification of Ganga Jamuni Tehzeeb.

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad is also known for making emotional appeals like:

“If an angel descends from heaven with the gift of freedom of India and declares from Qutub Minar that India is a free country I would not accept it unless Hindus and Muslims were united. If India does not get freedom it would be India’s loss but if Hindus and Muslims do not unite it would be entire humanity’s loss.”

However, did the Maulana treat Muslims and Hindus equally when they were among his own people? Has he equated patriotism with his “deen”?

The passages from his speech at a rally in Kolkata on October 27, 1914, that follow completely contradict his reputation as a modernist:

“One momin for another momin is like one brick assisting another brick in a wall.This biradri (community of Muslims) has been established by Allah…All relationships in the world can break down but this relationship can never be severed. It is possible a father turns against his son, not impossible that a mother separates her child from her lap, it is possible that one brother becomes the enemy of other brother…But the relationship that a Chinese Muslim has with an African Muslim, an Arab bedouin has with the Tatar shepherd, and which binds in one soul a neo-Muslim of India with the right-descendant Qureshi of Mecca, there is no power on earth to break it, to cut off this chain…”

“If even a grain of the soul of Islam is alive among its followers, then I should say that if a thorn gets stuck in a Turk’s sole on the battlefield of war, then I swear by the God of Islam, no Muslim of India can be a Muslim until he feels that prick in his heart instead of the sole because the Millat-e-Islam (the global Muslim community) is a single body.”

“Then, if it is true that a sword is being sharpened to strike in the heart of Islam, then what hesitation that we are engaged in developing a shield. If the worship of Jesus has ancient enmity against the worship of God, and this is not a new Christian conspiracy, then the unity of brotherhood is not a new tactic of the followers of Tawheed (Islamic monotheism) to defend against the attack of polytheists.”

“Remember, today, for Islam, for Muslims, any national or local movement cannot be fruitful. In my beliefs, all of this is an act of magic by the presager-Satan who makes those asleep because it does not like those sleeping [ie Muslims] to rise up”.The most important matter is that we have to build a university in Aligarh, have to collect Rs 30 lakh for this, it will serve as  a kaaba of Aligarh. The day the university is established, wahi (revelation, of Quranic verse 5:3) … will land on the roof of the Strachey Hall (of AMU).” In verse 5:3, Allah says: “This day I have perfected for you your religion…”

The fact that this statement was delivered during the First World War when the British Indian Army was engaged in combat with the Ottoman Empire, which had partnered with the German Empire, makes it appear even more deadly. Much earlier than the Khilafat movement, the global Islamist policy of preserving the Caliph, or Ottoman Emperor, had already begun.

The Muslim soldiers in the British Indian army occasionally rebelled. The 5th light infantry unit stationed in Singapore in February 1915 is one notable example.

Similar incidents were stimulated by speeches like the one mentioned above as well as propaganda released by the Ottoman intelligence. This speech was methodically prepared, and that encouraged more than 18,000 Muslims from India to travel to Turkey to fight in the jihad against the British and encouraged women to contribute jewelry in support of the cause. The number of Indian Muslims who have joined domestic or foreign terrorist organizations since independence is negligible in comparison to this. No Muslim from the rest of India ever traveled to Kashmir to participate in the jihad that Pakistan supports. Compared to 1900–1947, our situation is significantly better, but that does not give us the right to pretend that everything is perfect.

In 1913, Azad founded the Islamist political organization known as Hizbullah. By doing so, he also served as an inspiration for Maulana Maududi, the ultra-revivalist leader and founder of Jamat-e-Islami, who was later discouraged by the Ulema’s stance on a number of issues and decided to join the Congress in 1920. Hizbollah is currently recognized as a Lebanese Shia terrorist group that emerged seven decades later.

While it is true that Maulana Azad worked to organize the non-cooperation movement in opposition to the 1919 Rowlatt Acts, was a polyglot who spoke Urdu, Hindi, Arabic, Persian, Arabic, and English, and was an enthusiastic supporter of Gandhi’s ideas of non-violent civil disobedience, it should not be forgotten that he first gained notoriety in public as one of the leaders of the Khilafat movement (1919–1922), which sought to Nevertheless, this power was never actually exercised) was to foster Muslim political unification and harness their power to uphold the caliphate. In 1920, the leaders of the Khilafat formed an alliance with the Khilafat leaders and Indian National Congress formed an alliance with leaders, including Dr. Ansari, Maulana Azad, and Hakim Ajmal Khan, who grew close to Gandhi personally.

However, it didn’t take long for the forces supporting Khilafat to morph into an anti-Hindu campaign. The most horrifying example of this was in Malabar, where more than 10,000 Hindus were brutally murdered. Others, such as Ali Brothers, used Gandhi as a ladder before discarding him like a crumpled piece of paper. In order to advance the cause of Hindu-Muslim unification, Abul Kalam Azad stayed on and received promotions, although he continued to be a pan-Islamist up till the end. With the success of Mustafa Kemal’s armies, who ousted Ottoman rule to establish a pro-Western, secular republic in independent Turkey, the Khilafat movement lost its justification for existence.

He did away with the Caliphate and did not turn to the Indians for assistance. But India had already suffered harm. Gandhi and his cohorts granted political legitimacy to a group of ferocious extremists out of their thirst for political advantage and self-promotion, which would eventually result in the vivisection of the nation in less than three decades.

Not only this, “nationalist” Maulana Abul Kalam Azad opposed partition “till his last breath” because he believed that it would thwart the Islamic invasion of India since it would permanently separate India’s Muslim population.

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