The 26th annual and the Islamic world's biggest ever "International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference" under the banner of Minhaj-ul-Quran International was held on the intervening night between the 11th and the 12th of the holy month of the Rabi-ul-Awwal (February 26, 2010) at the historic Minar-e-Pakistan. The major highlight of the Conference was the keynote address delivered by Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri live from London through video conferencing. The Conference was held under the direct supervision of Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI's Supreme Council and Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI's Federal Council.
The distinguished participants who attended the Conference included Dr Ismail Abdul Nabi (Pro Vice Chancellor of Al-Azhar University, Cairo), Ahmad Abdul Aziz (First Secretary of the Egyptian embassy), Pir Syed Khalil-ur-Rehman Chishti (Darbar-e-Alia Chistiaabad, Kamonki), Hazrat Chan Pir Qadri (Darbar-e-Alia Mian Mir), Hazrat Pir Mian Ijaz Hashami (Sajjada Nasheen of Data Sahib Lahore), Allama Pir Turbat Khan (Afghanistan), Haji Ghulam Ahmad Balour (federal minister for Railways), Sahibzada Muhammad Farooq Hassan Shah (vice president of Minhaj Ulama Council), Allama Shahzad Ahmad Mujadadi (head of Dar-ul-Akhlas Lahore), Allama Muhammad Ramzan Sialvi (Khateeb of Data Darbar Lahore), Pir Allama Muhammad Tabasum Bashir Owaisi (central Secretary General of Tehreek-e-Owaisia, Narowal), Mufti Abdul Qayyum Khan Hazarvi (Minhaj-ul-Quran International), Allama Syed Ali Ghazanfer Kararvi (Secretary General of Tehreek-e-Ulama Pakistan), Sohail Akhtar Malik (chairman of Human Rights International, Pakistan), Mubeen-un-Din Qazi Advocate (in-charge of Mutthidda Qaumi Movement), Tanvir Ali (media Secretary of MQM, Lahore zone), Allama Shahzad Mujadadi, and Chaudhry Akhtar Rasool (former captain of Pakistan Hockey Team).
Those from amongst the central leaders of Minhaj-ul-Quran International included Amir-e-Tehreek Sahibzada Faiz-ur-Rehman Durrani, Nazim-e-Ala Dr Raheeq Ahmad Abbasi, Sheikh Zahid Fayyaz, Rana Farooq Mahmood, Rana Fayyaz Ahmad, Syed Farhat Hussain Shah, Allama Imdadullah Khan, Jawad Hamid, Muhammad Aqil Malik, Dr Shahid Mahmood, Shahid Latif Qadri, Ms Sumaira Rafaqat Advocate, Secretary General Minhaj-ul-Quran Women League, and other leaders, and staff members of the central secretariat.
In addition to the renowned Qaris and Naat Khawan from Pakistan and Egypt, hundreds of thousands of people from different parts of the country including children, men, the old and youth attended the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference. The number of women participants were a thronging majority, a prominent half of their male counterparts. The hundreds of caravans of buses and cars started reaching Lahore from the far flung areas of Pakistan since the morning of February 26. By the time the proceedings of the programme started, the central venue was jam-packed with people. Other participants watched the proceedings on the huge digital screens, installed out of the main venue on the surrounding roads.
A large number of Muslims living in different parts of the world were also part of the Conference through video conferencing. ARY Digital telecast live the complete proceedings of the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference. Other mainstream TV channels such as Geo TV, Express TV, Dunya TV, Waqat TV, City 42, and TV One also kept on covering the mega event. Minhaj Internet Bureau with the full cooperation and support of NEXLINX, an Internet provider company, made arrangements for the live coverage of the speech of Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri from UK, enabling the electronic media to broadcast the Conference live on their respective channels.
As per practice of previous years, more than one thousand goats were slaughtered and Milad feast remained open to all and sundry from 7 pm to 9 pm.
The proceedings of the first session of the Conference got underway with the recitation from the Holy Quran by Qari Minhaj-ud-Din and Qari Allah Baksh Naqishbandi. Minhaj Naat Council, Haideri Brothers, Shahzad Brothers, Shahzad Hanif Madani, Amjad Bilali Brothers, Shahzad Ashiq and other Naat Khawan recited Naat. During the Naat Khawnai, the participants expressed their spiritual emotions by holding and waving red and white flags which bore the name of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). The environment remained spiritually ecstatic during the whole course of Naat Khawani. Renonwed Egyptian Qaris namely Shaykh Rizwan Ali Rizwan, Qari al-Maqri as-Syed, and Qari Shaykh Hassan Bin Muhammad recited the verses from the Holy Quran in their unique, characteristic style.
In his speech on the occasion, Haji Ghulam Ahmad Balour, federal minister for Railways, said that he was immensely pleased to be a part of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference of Minhaj-ul-Quran International. He said that celebrating the birth anniversary of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) is his Sunna, which is followed everywhere but MQI has internationalized it. He said that celebration of Milad is the sign of love and devotion for the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). He said that Allah Almighty clearly stated in the Holy Quran that those who want to love Him should love His Messenger (blessings and peace be upon him) first. Minhaj-ul-Quran International arranged International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference for the sake of love for Allah's Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) aimed at urging everyone to do the same.
Second Session of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference
The second session of the Conference got underway at midnight around 12:00 with the recitation from the Holy Quran by Qari Syed Sadaqat Ali. Amjad Bilali Brothers recited Qaseeda Burda Sharif, Durood-e-Minhaj and Naat on the occasion.
Dr Raheeq Ahmad Abbasi, Secretary General of Minhaj-ul-Quran International, presented the welcome address in the second session of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference. He said that hundreds of thousands of people proved through their participation in the Conference that they reject extremism and terrorism and convey the message of peace through the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference. He said that the crux of the message is that the followers of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) want peace, stability and harmony in the world. He said that MQI has been holding International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conferences every year to promote peace, interfaith dialogue and harmony in the world and this is the message, which Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri is promoting through his practical works and speeches around the globe.
In his speech, Dr Ismail Abdul Nabi, Pro Vice Chancellor of Al-Azhar University, said that celebrating the birth anniversary of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) is obligatory on every Muslim and MQI under the leadership of Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri has transformed it into a culture. He said that the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) came to the world on the 12th of Rabi-ul-Awwal and he also migrated on the same day. He said that celebrating the birth anniversary is the Prophetic Sunna, which cannot be denied. He also referred to a number of Hadith in connection with celebration of the Prophet's birth anniversary. He told the participants that he came to attend the Conference on the special invitation of Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI's Supreme Council and feels greatly privileged to be part of such an august moot. He also congratulated the central leadership of MQI on the successful conduct of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference.
In his address in the Conference, Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI's Federal Council, said that human body is a compact entity where all organs work within their respective domains. That is how the system of the world is functioning which is called Universe. He said that human body, despite its every organ being fit and in good condition, ceases to function once the soul departs it. He said that the real thing in human body is soul, which is invisible. Even medical science has failed to notice this soul. Allah Almighty said:
So when I accomplish bringing his (physical) constitution into its perfect real being and breathe My (Divine) Spirit into (the inner self of) this (human physical) organism, then fall down prostrate before him.’ (15:29)
He said that soul has its connection with Allah Almighty and it means the light of Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him). When Allah would intend to decimate the Universe, He would take away the soul i.e. light of Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him) from this into the other world. He would breathe the light i.e. the Prophet's soul into the world. The latter would be blessed with eternal life even that world and the Day of Reckoning would occur.
He said that the world we live and breathe in also owes its existence to the blessings of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). The same is the case with moon and sun. Those of the people who deny the Prophetic intercession are enemies of peace and love in the world. They simultaneously enjoy and reject the blessings of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). He said that it is for the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) that the universe was created. "This is precisely the message of Minhaj-ul-Quran International and Shaykh-ul-Islam and there is a need to spread it," he concluded.
Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, president of MQI's Supreme Council, recited the verse from the Holy Quran in the beginning of his speech. He said that Allah Almighty blessed the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) with manifest and hidden attributes and He has doled out the rewards of these attributes in every age. No age in the world has gone empty-handed and unblessed. He said that all worlds including our earth owe themselves to the Prophetic mercy and blessings.
Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri said that the question arises as to why Allah Almighty associated everything with the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). This earth belongs to the Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) and he also holds sway on the heavens. Why so? This is so because Allah Almighty made it clear that though He is the Creator of the Universe but the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) is its master. If one wants Paradise, its master is the Holy Prophet and if one wants to make the Creator the Universe pleased, one should please the Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). That is why Allah Almighty wrote the name of holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) on every leaf of trees in Paradise and in every corner of the highest heaven.
Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri said that Allah Almighty did not permit the distribution of spoils of war unless divided by the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) himself. How can one get to Paradise without his pleasure?
He said that it is the heart of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him), which was selected for the revelation of the Divine Word, and this Holy Quran became the Shariah (Islamic Law) of the Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). He said that the faith came to the world for guidance of people, but it was blessed with the Prophetic association. He said he who wants to choose the way of success and welfare should submit himself to the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) wholly. This International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference is a clarion call and a message in which lies the secret to the success not only in this world but also in the hereafter.
After the speech by Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri, Minhaj Naat Council recited Naat Khawani and with it the second session of the programme came to end.
Third Session of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference
The third session of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference got underway at around 3 a.m. Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri delivered his keynote address in this session. He started his speech with the recitation of the following verse:
So when I accomplish bringing his (physical) constitution into its perfect real being and breathe My (Divine) Spirit into (the inner self of) this (human physical) organism, then fall down prostrate before him.’ (15:29)
Shaykh-ul-Islam said that Allah Almighty mentioned two parts of human creation in this verse; one related to the making of his physical; body and the other to his inner self (soul). Likewise, He described two aspects of the existence of the Universe: the visible and the invisible ones. Some people do not accept this duality due to lack of knowledge.
He said that Allah Almighty mentioned this fact in the Holy Quran wherein He instructed the believers not only to stay clear of form (physical appearance) but also of the essence (inner reality) of a sin. It was also said that acceptance of actions depended on the underlying intentions. The teachings of Islam encompass both commandments and prohibitions. Likewise, the human body also has two aspects i.e. the manifest and the hidden. The manifest is heavy (polluted) and the hidden is light (purity). Allah Almighty does not like pollution. If one's heart remains plagued with arrogance, conceit, and bias and one also happens to learn knowledge, it would remain merely knowledge. One is bound to remove the impurity of heart to convert this knowledge into productive knowledge. This proves that one does not get knowledge by merely studying. Rather the purification of heart is the precondition to attain the productive knowledge.
Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri said that Mawlid-un-Nabi is a night, which only relates to the human existence and the birth of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him), and it does not represent his night of essence (reality). There are a number of creations of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) but his birth as a human being is just one, which is the night of Mawlid-un-Nabi (blessings and peace be upon him). The spiritual existence of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) finds its culmination in the infinite world. In the same way, the Journey of Ascension to heaven represents both the beginning and end of his spiritual existence. There is another existence of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him), which is both terrestrial and celestial. In spite of all that, he remains the worshipper of Allah.
He said that when the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) submitted himself before his Lord, he would always present himself as His humble servant. On the other hand, when Allah Almighty addressed His Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him), He would give him such an excellence and status, which He did not bless any other Prophet with.
Talking about the name 'Muhammad', there is both 'paish' and 'zabir' (sound marks) on the word "Muhammad" but there is no 'zair'. Allah Almighty did not like to lower the name of His beloved. 'Paish' on the word 'meem' points out that the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) is also the master of the entire world. Referring to an agreed-upon Hadith, he said: A person asked the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) as to who his father was. The Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) said that so and so person was his father. This is an example of his being master of all. According to another Hadith of Bokhari and Muslim, the Holy Prophet described in one sitting all that is likely to happen till the Day of Judgment.
There is a sound mark 'shud' (double letter sound) on 'meem', which means that whatever Allah Almighty blessed the Holy Prophet with, He tied a knot on it, which further means that the status and excellence the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) enjoyed during the period of the Companions has remained intact down the course of time and there is no diminution in it.
The sound mark 'jazm' means peace and one cannot get peace unless one attains nearness and intimacy. The Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) blessed the people with peace and tranquility. He said that certain unwise people are of the view that Minhaj-ul-Quran International and Tahir-ul-Qadri are equating the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) with Allah Almighty. The holders of such an opinion are ignorant and live in the manifest error, because Allah did not separate His Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) from Himself. How can we do that? He cited a number of the Quranic verses in which simultaneous mention of Allah and His Apostle (blessings and peace be upon him) has been made together.
Allah Almighty said that no human being possessed the power to speak to Him. 'What do you do then, My Lord?' He said: he who I speak to becomes the Prophet. Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri said that there are 38 verses, which command obedience, and there are 20 verses out of these where the obedience of Allah and His Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) has been mentioned together. On the other hand, there is not even a single verse, which commands exclusively about the obedience of Allah.
Concluding his speech, he held out a message to the people that the eternal peace lies in the love of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him). This is the message of peace, which MQI is spreading around the world. He said that we have given a message of hope and peace to the world by holding the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference in an environment marked by terrorism and violence. The Holy Prophet and his teachings are the source of global peace and this is what we need to project to the rest of the world.
After the speech of Shaykh-ul-Islam, Durood-o-Salam was offered on the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) and the durood recited in the Gosha-e-Durood of MQI was presented to his presence. The programme concluded on the Dua for peace, security and progress of Pakistan and Muslim Umma led by Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri.
Highlights of Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference 2010
The workers of Minhaj Youth League and other law enforcement agencies had taken over the security arrangements of the venue since the morning of February 26.
The local administration and police had worked out special security plan in view of attendance of the Conference by millions of devotees.
The participants were seen crowding the venue after the evening prayer.
There were five entry points for entrance of the participants into the venue of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference where security scanners were also installed. The participants were required to pass through three different checking processes. After the clearance, they could enter the main venue.
By 8 p.m. both of the front areas of the venue were full and by 10 p.m., hundreds of thousands of participants were comfortably seated in their chairs.
The main venue was divided into three parts. About half the number of the total participants consisted of women.
In the middle of the venue was open space for seating on the ground, whereas chairs were placed in one area.
Other than the main venue, the total area of International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference was divided into three parts where sale centres, Milad feast and other commercial stalls were put up.
Water arrangements were also made.
A huge rush of people was seen at the sale centre where the books of Shaykh-ul-Islam were available on special discounts.
Milad feast was distributed between 7 pm and 10 pm.
On the southern side of Minar-e-Pakistan was the entrance gate for women where women security personnel were also present.
All kinds of parking were strictly prohibited around the premises of Minar-e-Pakistan in view of security situation.
A MSM reception camp at the Azadi Chowk was set up to welcome the participants.
Gate no 1 was exclusively reserved for the entry of VIPs where high police and administration officials, wardens and intelligence operatives were present. Only those individuals were allowed to enter who had VIP card with them.
Three huge sized hoardings were installed on the backside of the stage.
There were only a few chairs on the central stage where the special guests were seated.
The respected religious scholars of Minhaj-ul-Quran Ulama Council, and other distinguished guests were sitting in the VIP Enclosure in front of the central stage.
Huge digital screens were also installed in the venue.
Dozens of media persons were also there for the coverage of the mega event. Media enclosure was set up on the right side of the stage.
ARY Digital started live telecast of the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference from 12 onwards.
Minhaj Internet Bureau had shown the speech of Shaykh-ul-Islam live from UK with the cooperation of NEXLINX, an internet provider company.
Minhaj Productions recorded the total proceedings of the programme and handed it over to TV channels.
Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri and Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri came to the venue at 11:15 pm and the participants gave them standing ovation. They also waved hands to respond to the slogans of the participants.
Haji Ghulam Ahmad Bilour, federal minister of Railways and central leader of Awami National Party, was also among the respected guests.
The Egyptian Qaris continued to recite verses from the Holy Quran till 12 midnight. Afterwards, Dr Raheeq Ahmad Abbasi presented the welcome address and felicitated all chapters of MQI and PAT on the successful arrangements of such a programme.
Rose petals were showered through the air shooter during the course of the programme.
At 12:45 a.m., Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri also joined in the programme through video conferencing. The hundreds of thousands of participants gave him standing ovation.
The participants present in Minhaj-ul-Quran Islamic Centre London were also part of the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference through two-way video conferencing.
Dr Ismail Abdul Nabi, vice chancellor of Al-Azhar University, delivered his speech in Arabic language whose Urdu translation was read out by Hafiz Saeed Raza Baghdadi.
Waqas Ali Qadri presented the introduction of newly published books of Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri.
Shafique-ur-Rehman Saad, director of Minhaj Productions, singer Mazhar Ali and Minhaj Naat Council, presented special 'kalam' at 1:30 a.m.
The speech of Sahibzada Hussain Mohi-ud-Din Qadri started at 1:30 and ended at 2 am.
Sahibzada Hassan Mohi-ud-Din Qadri started his address at 2:05 a.m. which ended at 2:35 a.m.
The third and concluding session of the Conference began at 2:45 a.m., which consisted of speech and Dua of Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri.
Muhammad Mohsin Khokar invited Shaykh-ul-Islam to deliver speech in his unique, characteristic style.
Before the formal start of his speech, Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri thanked the management of MQI, security personnel, local administration & police officials, NEXLINX and TV channels for their cooperation and support to make conference a huge success.
The keynote speech of Shaykh-ul-Islam started 2:45 and continued till 5 a.m.
The proceedings of the International Mawlid-un-Nabi Conference came to an end at 5:30 a.m.