Heritage Times

Exploring lesser known History


Anjuman-i-Islam: London and Mazharul Haque of Bihar

Dr. Sachchidananda Sinha. Bar-at-Law, an educated Hindu, writes about his close friend, Maulana Mazharul Haque:

‘Mazharul Haque was born at a village in the Patna district, in December 1866. In 1886 at the rather advanced age of twenty he passed matriculation, and took his admission into Patna College. In 1887 he went to Lucknow, and joined there the Canning College; but in May 1888 he took a pilgrimage steamer to Aden with but Rs 70 in his pocket, and awaited there for further remittance from home. After a weary waiting for three months there, he got sufficient funds, and then started for London arriving there in September of that year….In England he (Mazharul Haque) devoted his time not only to the study of Law, but other subjects as well.
He started there the Anjuman Islamia, which though ostensibly organised for Muslims was for years a favourite meeting place of Muslim and non-Muslim Indians, and which I used to attend, since my arrival in London in February 1890. In due course, he was called to the Bar in July, 1891, and on his return he was enrolled as an advocate of the Calcutta High court. While in England he studied elocution, and used to recite wonderfully well famous scenes from Shakespeare and Sheridan.’

Sir Ali Imam, an icon of nationalism, as remembered by Sachchidananda Sinha

Dr. Sachchidananda Sinha gives a clear picture of amicable relationship between Hindus and Muslims in London in the late 19th century. During this period when Indians were engaged in political activism in England; religion was merely an issue let alone sectarianism among Muslims being Shia or Sunni.

Below is a rare postcard of (Maulana) Mazharul Haque as a lawyer; is from personal collection.

Mazharul Haque of Bihar

Joshi Bros. of Bombay (Mumbai) published many photo postcards of political leaders and activism of late 19th and early 20th century of British India. These postcards are now rare historical documents. We keep a sizeable number of postcards from the same publisher in our collection.

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M S Siddiqui

Dr. Mohammad Siddiqui is a UK based Medical doctor. Apart from Medicine he is interested in history, culture, art and architecture. He is an avid collector of rare photographs, postcards, maps, artefacts, rare books and magazines on different themes like ‘Hajj pilgrimage’, ‘Delhi’, ‘Islam in Britain’ and ‘The role of Indian soldiers in WWI.’