A BRIEF BIOGRAPHY:
Moulana Muhammad Yousuf Banuri R.A. was born on the 6th Rabiuth Thani 1326
in the village of 'Mahabatabad' near the railway station of Rashkay in the
District of Mardan, West Pakistan.
He received his primary education and learnt the recital of the Quraan
Kareem at home (Ghari Meer Ahmed Shah, Peshawar') from his father and
matenal uncle Moulana Fadhl Hamdan Banuri. He learned the basics of Sarf,
Nahw and Mantiq from Moulana Abdullah Peshawari. He then went to Kabul
where he studied Fiqh, Usul Fiqh, Mantiq, and Ma’aani etc. from the Qudhi
ul Qudhat, Moulana Abdulqadeer, Moulana Saieli Qaleeghawi and other
well-versed Asaatiza. For higher education, he went to Darul Uloom,
Deoband in 1345 and completed his education there in two years. He studied
Dorah Hadith in Dabhel under the great Moulana Anwar Shah Kashmiri R.A.,
Moulana Shabbir Ahmed Utmani R.A. and other great-learned scholars.
After graduation, he stayed for quite some time in the company and service
of the learned Shaykh Moulana Anwar Shah Kashmiri R.A. and was his special
and close attendant. He benefited tremendously from Shah Saheb. At that
time on the wish and insistence of his father, he participated in the
Molvi Fadhil examinations at the Punjab University and attained first
position, though he disliked this examination, in spite of having time to
prepare for it. He then lived for a few years in his home town of
Peshawar, and began diligently teaching in Madrasah Rafiul Islam, Baanah
Maar'i (The principal of this Madrasah was his maternal uncle Moulana
Fadhl Hamdan Banuri R.A.) I was at that time studying Dorah Hadith in
Darul Uloom, Deoband. In 1352 (1934 A.D.) when Moulana Anwar Shah Saheb
passed away, Moulana Yousuf Banuri came to pay his respects and after
staying for a few days returned. Thereafter he was approached by the
authorities of Dabhel to teach there, and he accepted the offer.
He was appointed to teach Kitaabs on Hadith. His acceptance amongst the
students can be gauged from the following incident: Once there arose the
question as to who should teach the Tirmizi Shareef. At that time, there
were three great Asaatiza of Hadith at the Dabhel Madrasah.
Moulana Abdurrahman Amrohi.
Moulana Muhammad Badre Aalam, and
Moulana Yousuf Banuri.
It was decided that the students also be consulted in this matter. As a
result, Moulana Yousuf Banuri received 27 votes and the other two Ustaad,
7 and 3 respectively.
Marhum Moulana remained the Shaykhul Hadith at Dabhel until the creation
of Pakistan and thereafter, at the invitation of the elders at Darul Uloom,
Tando Allah Yar, went there. After remaining there for several years he
came to Karachi and laid the foundation of' the Madrasah Arabiyyah
lslamiyyah, Newtown. Karachi.
Before coming to Dabhel, he was Director General of the Jamiatul Ulama -
Frontier Province and took an active part in politics. He took interest in
politics while at Dabhel too. After the creation of Pakistan, he abstained
completely from politics and spent all his time in education and the
spiritual and social upliftment of the Ummah. Alhamdulilah, he had great
respect and continued to keep his contacts with the elders of Deoband.
During his first Hajj (after which he went to Egypt to supervise the
printing of the 'Faydhul Baari' and 'Nasbur Raayah') he took the Bay'ah at
the hand of Moulana Shafi'uddin Naginwi Makki (who was the Majaaz of Haji
Imdadullah R.A.) Moulana Naginwi RA said that there are two great
personalities in India, from whomever you wish, seek and attain benefit.
The first is Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi R.A. and the other is Moulana
Husayn Ahmed Madani R.A. Moulana Yousuf Saheb was more inclined towards
Moulana Husayn Ahmed Madani R.A.
Moulana Yousuf Banuri R.A. stayed for ten months in Cairo. During his stay
there, he wrote many articles on Deoband and its elders for the Egyptian
journals and periodicals. During that period, Allama Zahid Al-Kowthari was
also living there. Marhum Moulana had a close association with him and
benefited greatly from his knowledge. He also introduced the elders of
Deoband and their educational works to him. As a result, Shaykh Kowthari
requested Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi to grant him permission on his Sanad
of Hadith, which Moulana Thanwi kindly did.
When Marhum Moulana Yousuf Saheb returned from Egypt he went to visit
Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi R.A., who became very impressed with him. Later,
Moulana Thanwi R.A. included him in his Majaazeene Suhbat.
It was my practice, after graduation, to go to Deoband every year in
Sha'baan to participate in the Bukhari Khatam there. Moulana had just
returned from Egypt when I was deciding to go to Deoband. He gave me a
letter for Moulana Husayn Ahmed Madani R.A., wherein he stated his desire
to make Bay'ah at his hands, and requested me to personally hand it to him
and bring back the reply. I reached Deoband and delivered the letter to
Moulana Madani RA. He replied: 'His matter of Bay'ah is with Moulana
Thanwi, and how can.1 repeat it?' I explained the situation to him
whereupon he replied: 'When you have time remind me'. (During that time,
Moulana was busily occupied in teaching the Bukhari Shareef day and night)
On the 29th Sha'baan at half past two at night he completed the Bukhari
Shareef. Immediately thereafter, he left for Saharanpur to go to Sylhet. I
accompanied him till Saharanpur and reminded him of the answer to the
letter. He immediately wrote a reply on the station platform and gave it
to me. I delivered the reply to Moulana Yousuf Banuri. The letter was
published some months ago in the 'Bayyinaat' monthly.
Marhum Moulana had a special proficiency and intellect for writing. He
possessed a unique style, and wrote easily without tiring on every
subject. At times after writing, he did not re-read the article. Moulana
was more proficient in Arabic than Urdu. Besides the 'Basaa'ir wa Ibar' in
the monthly 'Bayyinaat' and a few Urdu articles, all his literary
compositions were in Arabic. (He was a member of the Majma'ul ilmi Al-Arabi
of Damascus). These are some of his main works:
1. Ma'aarifus Sunan, commentary on Tirmizi in 6 volumes.
2. Awaariful Minan, introduction to Ma'aarifus Sunan (not printed).
3. Bughiyatul Areeb fi Ahkaamul Qiblah wal Mahaareeb.
4. Nafhatul Ambar fi Hayatus Shaykh Anwar.
5. Yateematul Bayaan fi Shay'im min Ulumil Qur'aan. He wrote introduction
for the following Kitaabs: Faydhul Baari, Nasbur Raayah, Abaqaat,
Aqeedatul Islam, Maqalaat Kowthari, etc. etc.
Marhum Moulana was very courageous and spoke the Haq. He put forward his
outspoken views without fear or hesitation during the reign of every
government, saying that one should only fear Allah the Almighty. The 'Basaa'ir
wa Ibar' of the Bayyinaat are a clear testimony to his frankness in
expressing the truth.
May Allah Most High shower him with His abundant blessings. Ameen.
Maulana Muhammad Ayyub Jan Banuri
Bayyinaat Zulhijjah 1397
Ar Rashaad ( March 1978)
Article taken (with Thanks) from JamiatKZN
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