Dynastic struggles brought about Caliphate’s decline – NIHCR Webinar on The End of Caliphate and Khilafat Movement in India 

Islamabad, October 17, 2021 (PPI-OT):The Caliphate was one of the oldest Islamic institutions in the history. The Ottoman Caliphate was the last caliphate of the late medieval and early modern era that lasted 13 centuries and was abolished in 1924, opined Prof Emeritus Aslam Syed in a Webinar on Discourse of History on the End of Caliphate and Khilafat Movement in India here on Saturday.

Responding to a question, Prof Syed said that the empire of the Caliphate grew rapidly through conquests during its first two centuries to include most of Southwest Asia, North Africa and Spain. Dynastic struggles later brought about the Caliphate’s decline, he said. The guest speaker Prof Emeritus Aslam Syed has been serving the Center for Religious Studies, Ruhr Universität, Bochum, Germany. He remained Chairman, Department of History, Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad and also served the NIHCR as its Director.

The Webinar was arranged online by the National Institute of Historical and Cultural Research (NIHCR), Centre of Excellence, Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad, attended by over 700 participants ranging from students, teachers and researchers to have greater insights into the valuable views of the guest speaker.

Narrating history of Khilafat Movement in India, Prof Syed recalled that the Muslims of India had a great regard for the Khilafat. Thus, Muslims organized a mass movement, which came to be known as Khilafat Movement in order to protect the holy place of Turkey; to restore the territories of Turkey and to restore the Ottoman Empire, he said.

During the discourse, the NIHCR Director Dr Sajid Mahmood Awan was of the view that two Indian brothers, Mohammad Ali Jauhar and Maulana Shaukat Ali, leaders of the Indian-based Khilafat Movement, distributed pamphlets calling upon the Turkish people to preserve the Ottoman Caliphate for the sake of Islam. In 1923, Syed Ameer Ali and Aga Khan III sent a letter to İsmet Pasha Inonu on behalf of the movement.

Supplementing Dr Awan’s observation, Prof Syed said that in 1921, the Ali brothers were arrested on charges of sedition. Mohanchand Karamchand Gandhi suspended the Non-Cooperation movement after the Chauri Chaura incident. He was arrested in 1922. A few months after his arrest, the Caliph or the Sultan of Turkey was deposed of his power due to a revolution led by Mustafa Kemal Pasha. Later on, Turkey moved towards becoming a secular state and the Khilafat issue lost its importance, he said.

The NIHCR Director Dr Sajid Mahmood Awan conducted the Webinar by triggering a dialogue with Dr Syed for substantiating this discourse. This inclusive activity has been taken up every week for the benefit of students in general and capacity-building of the teachers and researchers in particular, he said.

For more information, contact:
National Institute of Historical and Cultural Research (NIHCR)
Quaid-e-Azam University, New Campus, Shadara Road,
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +92-51-2896153-54/102
Fax: +92-51-2896152