Source: Al Islam Online archives, 1988.
Courtesy: Rashid Ahmad Chaudhry, Press Secretary, London.
Maulana Professor Tahirul Qadri, Quaid Tehrik Minhajul Quran announced that he has accepted the Mubahala challenge, but Mirza Tahir Ahmad should come personally to Meenar-i-Pakistan Lahore on 12th Rabi-ul-Awwal 1988 to face him. I will wait for Mirza Tahir Ahmad the whole night in the presence of thousands of my followers and other Ulemas until Fajr. As a result of Mubahala, either Mirza Tahir will become a Muslim or be killed. If it does not happen, I may be beheaded there and then, he boasted. Professor Tahirul Qadri was sent a reply by registered post from London, well in advance, and a copy of the letter was also delivered to him personally in Lahore before 12th Rabi-ul-Awwal. Posters and handbills of the same were published and distributed throughout the length and breadth of Pakistan. We reproduce here the English translation of the open letter sent to Professor Tahirul Qadri.
Mr. Tahirul Qadri
Having studied your open letter and various statements in the press in response to the challenge to the Mubahala issued by the Imam of the World- wide Ahmadiyya Community, Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad on 10th June 1988, we can say with full confidence that you have not taken this matter seriously and that your heart is devoid of God’s fear. Indeed you have tried to seek cheap publicity in the media through your deceit and trickery. Firstly, your declaration that the Imam Jamaat Ahmadiyya Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad must accept your challenge is simply an attempt to pull the wool over people’s eyes. Not only the Imam Jamaat Ahmadiyya issued forth the challenge of Mubahala in response to the allegations made by people like you, but also through his numerous Friday Sermons and public statements has already invoked the curse of God on wilful liars. He has thus already become a party to this Mubahala. Thereafter, it was left only for you to accept and become the opposing party. You should have signed the challenge issued by the Head of the World-wide Ahmadiyya Community individually or jointly with other leaders and given wide publicity of your acceptance. You should have openly declared that: “Mirza Tahir Ahmad has told lies in all those matters he has stated in his Mubahala challenge and that the person whom he holds as the Promised Messiah and the Imam Mahdi, is an impostor.” After stating all this being fully conscious of the responsibilities of your actions, you should have invoked the curse of Allah on those who lie by repeating the words of the Holy Quran. [Arabic] Moreover you should have claimed that all those statements made by the Ulema (which we regard as allegations against the Ahmadiyya Jamaat) are true statements of fact, and that if you have uttered a lie, may the curse of Allah fall on you. Had you any fear of God, you should have adopted this right course of action.
Secondly as for the demand that both parties should gather together in such and such place; or that if Mirza Tahir did not reach Lahore on such and such date, he would be considered a liar. To us, these are lame excuses and nothing short of running away from the Mubahala Challenge. It is our firm belief that Allah is present everywhere. There is no place beyond the reach of His Powers and no spot on earth is beyond the sphere of His absolute domination and His omnipotence. Unlike any worldly monarch or ruler whose seat of power lies in England or Pakistan, ” The Throne of our Lord extends over the heavens and the earth.” (Quran 2:256) So what is wrong with simply addressing Allah and saying: “Lanat ullah alal Kazibeen” why must there be the physical presence of both parties to the Mubahala? Does God not have the power to inflict those in London with His curse as a result of your prayer in Lahore, or made you the subject of Divine wrath wherever you are, as a result of our prayers?
Thirdly, if you are drawing the inference from the verse of the Holy Quran about Mubahala (Quran 3:62) that it is necessary for both parties to come face to face, then accordingly all those people who belong to either of the sides should be present there with all their wives and children. If so, is it possible for ten million Ahmadis from all over the world and, your followers, whether they are thousands or tens of thousands, to assemble in one place? Do not attribute your absurd tirade to the Holy Quran. Furthermore, can you prove that a demand to bring forth all Christian men, women and children to Medina was made by the Holy Prophet of Islam when he issued a Mubahala challenge to the Christian deputation of Najaran? Or did the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) offer to take all his relatives and other Muslims to Najaran for the Mubahala? And, yet you continue with your vain absurdity. The truth is that your tirade does not only defy common sense and logic but is opposed to historical facts.
Fourthly, in any case, if you have already made up your mind to rely on this lame excuse as a way out from the Mubahala, that God Almighty has (God forbid) no powers to accept the prayers of the people living apart, then we draw your attention to yet another verse of the Holy Quran. God Almighty says:
“If you fancy that you are the friends of Allah to the exclusion of all other people, then agree to the pray that death may overtake you if your claim is false.” (Sura Al Jumaah)
Since you claim that you are more closer to Allah than Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian and his followers, then, in the light of this Quranic verse, why do you not pray that death may overtake you in a manner that it would become a source of guidance for the rest of mankind, in case your claim happens to be false?
Fifthly, we are absolutely clear in our stance that it is not necessary for the parties to assemble in any one place for the purpose of Mubahala. All that is required therefore is that a very clear declaration of participation be made so that the would at large be apprised that a supplication: May Allah’s curse fall on the wilful liars, has been made by such and such parties. This supplication should not be reduced to the mere wishing of misfortune on someone by an individual, but so that, as a consequence on such a prayer, truth may be distinguished from falsehood. That is why in the invitation to a Mubahala issued by the Imam Jamaat Ahmadiyya, there is no pre-condition to assemble in any one place. The Imam Jamaat Ahmadiyya has thus already become a party to Mubahala challenge as a head of the Ahmadiyya community on 10th of June 1988, when he issued the challenge and prayed: May Allah’s curse fall on the wilful liars. Therefore if you have any moral and spiritual courage you too should clearly declare whether you accept the invitation or not. If you decide to accept the invitation, you should repeat all those allegations which are mentioned in the pamphlet Mubahala issued by the Ahmadiyya community and which you and your people have been heaping up against the Jamaat. Thus by invoking the curse of Allah on the party which tells lies about the other, you will become a party to the Mubahala.
Nevertheless we recommend that you tread the path of righteousness. Better seek forgiveness from God Almighty and stop vilifying God’s chosen Imam so that you may be saved from God’s wrath. Learn a lesson from the signs which God has hitherto manifested in favour of the party which is one the true path. The very purpose of Mubahala is that the falsehood of the party which tells lies may become patently obvious to the world.
If you must persist in other matters, what response do you have in respect of those false allegations (mentioned in the said Mubahala pamphlet), which God has already proven utterly false and baseless. We refer to the charge of murder of Maulana Aslam Qureshi, alleged to have been comitted by the Jamaat Ahmadiyya and its Imam.
If, inspite of this admonition, you do not desist form your deceit and trickery and continue to give the impression to the people that it is you who is issuing a Mubahala challenge and that the Imam Jamaat Ahmadiyya is trying to evade it, then it is our prayer that may Allah consider this act as equivalent to your formal acceptance of the Mubahala challenge and may He manifest His powerful awesome sign with regard to you.
Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Dated 16th October 1988
Moreover two pamphlets were issued by the Ahmadi scholars in response to Maulana Tahirul Qadri’s stand. Hafiz Muzaffar Ahmad from Rabwah Pakistan issued a pamphlet stating therein the meaning of the term Mubahala according to Arabic grammar and its conditions, exposing the mistakes of the said Maulana. Mr. Mujib-ur-Rehman Advocate Ameer Jamaat Ahmadiyya Rawalpindi, in his pamphlet took up the issue and provided strong arguments in favour of the Ahmadiyya stand, refuting Maulana’s objections one by one.
Another zealous Ahmadi Mr. M. L. Shakir of London, in an open letter to him accepted his condition to the Mubahala challenge. He wrote, “I am willing to come to Pakistan for the Mubahala, along with my wife and children, provided Pakistan government guarantees my safety, alternatively I am willing to arrange it in London.” A copy of the letter was sent to him by registered post again. Mr. Shakir also referred to a statement in the newspaper wherein it was mentioned that Maulana’s Pir claimed that he could show a miracle with his pen, that his pen could write the Tafseer of the whole Quran by itself. Mr. Shakir argued: “You are his follower. Your Pir is no more living. You show us a similar miracle and not to say the whole Quran, let your pen write the Tafseer of Sura Fatiha alone before the World T.V. and scientists, which I will arrange. Millions of people will accept you as their leader by seeing this miracle.” As expected Maulana Tahirul Qadri did not respond positively to this offer.
12th Rabi-ul-Awwal came and went. Maulana Tahirul Qadri managed to gather about thirty thousand people at Meenar-i-Pakistan, but he was so much overawed by the Mubahala Challenge, issued by the Head of the Ahmadiyya Community and the reaction of the Jamaat Ahmadiyya, that during his whole speech he did not even utter the world Mubahala.
Like Tahirul Qadri, most of the mullahs could not differentiate between Mubahala (prayer duel) and Munazara (debate). They all made the Mubahala conditional and demanded that parties should meet at one place. Due to lack of Quranic knowledge and knowledge of Islamic history, they put forward ridiculous suggestions in this regard.