Hazrat Syed Ata Ullah Shah Bukhari Rahimullah
(September 23, 1892 - August 21, 1961)

A Muslim Pakistani scholar, religious and senior political leader. He was one of the Majlis-e-Ahrar-e-Islam's

founding members. He learned the Qur'an by heart from his father, Hafiz Syed Ziauddinat at the age of 10.

He began his career as a religious preacher in a small Masjid in Amritsar and taught the Holy Quran for the next 40 years. He became one of the best reciters of the Qur'an of his time. He started his religious and political career in 1916. His speeches were entertaining, eloquent, lucid and full of witty anecdotes and stories from Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Punjabi, and Multani traditions. He graphically portrayed the sorrows and sufferings of the poor and would promise his audience that the end of their sufferings would come about with the end of British rule in India.

He was an exceptional leader who traveled across the length and breadth of the country, yet never made any statements to the press. He delivered a stirring speech at the Khilafat Conference held at Amritsar in December 1919. As the first step of his political career, he began to participate in the movements of the Indian National Congress in 1921 from Kolkatta and here again he delivered a very impressive and passionate speech. Soon his popularity soared high and turned him into a known leader, though he was arrested on 27th March 1921 because of that speech. He believed in attaining independence through non-violent and constitutional means. As an active Indian National Congress member, he toured the country, often purporting to be an emissary of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. He combined his politics with missionary zeal following the injunctions of Quran as a devotee throughout his life. He became an eyesore to the administration and an official view about him said: "Ata Ullah Shah is a man, who it is better to lock up in jail, away from Congress leaders than to parley with. He has spent a considerable part of his life preaching sedition. He is an amusing speaker, who can influence a crowd."

He created the All India Majlis-e-Ahrar-e-Islam with Maulana Mazhar Ali Azhar, Chaudhry Afzal Haq, Maulana Habib-ur-Rehman Ludhianvi, Sheikh Hissam-ud-Din, Master Taj-uj-Din Ansari and Maulana Zafar Ali Khan in December 29, 1929. Due to his significant role in this movement the important religious figures choose him as the Ameer-e-Shariat in 1930. He was also the founding father of Majlis-e-Ahrar, Indian nationalist Muslim political movement in India. He led a movement against Qadianis and held a Ahrar Tableegh Conference in Qadian in 21st-23rd of October 1934.

He was a central figure in the Khatme Nabuwwat Movement of 1953, which demanded that government of Pakistan declare the Qadianis as non-Muslims. He died on August 21, 1961. A crowd of above 200,000 attended his Janaza in Multan. 

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