The Establishment of Darul-‘Uloom at Karachi: After his migration to Pakistan, Hadrat Maulana Mufti Muhammad Shafi Sahib had made two objectives the sole purpose of his life. The first was to struggle for the implementation of the Shari’ah of Islam in Pakistan while the second objective was to establish a Darul-‘Uloom at Karachi which was to be a befitting institution of higher Islamic learning in a metropolis.
The first two years were consumed in formulating the Objectives Resolution that now forms part of the Constitution of Pakistan and in striving for an Islamic constitution of the state. The struggle was laced with grave handicaps and the essential support needed in the effort was meager. But, the aim was so important that he remained preoccupied with it in a degree that nothing effective could be done to establish the projected Darul-‘Uloom.
At the time Pakistan was established as a sovereign state, Karachi had two distinctions. It was the capital of Pakistan, and the city of millions of Muslims. But, it had no central institution that could take care of the religious needs of its enormous population. Therefore, it was necessary to establish such an institution. For this reason, Mufti-e-A’zam Pakistan Hadrat Maulana Mufti Muhammad Shafi Sahib, placing his total trust in Allah and ignoring the lack of advance support for the project, went ahead and established an Islamic Madrasah in an old school building located in Nanakwarah. He had two teachers and a few students there. The name given to the project was Darul-‘Uloom, Karachi. It was established in Shawwal, 1370 corresponding to June1951.
Once Darul-‘Uloom was established, students started converging in from all provinces and districts of Pakistan. In addition to that, students from India, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia, Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey and other Islamic countries also started coming here. Alhamdulillah, from this modest start, it was within a very short span of time that Darul-‘Uloom, Karachi turned into a fortified fortress of Faith in the Muslim world. It became the home of the seekers of the knowledge bequeathed by the Holy Prophet (Sallaho Alaihi Wassalam), a virtual pivot for those who would carry the call of Islam universally. Such was the rush of students that the fairly large school building became too small. At that time, something turned up as sheer grace from Allah Ta’ala. The constant prayers of Hadrat Mufti Sahib were answered. And his true concern for this center of Islamic learning found its base. A 56-acre plot of land located in Korangi, along with a two-storied building, cemented well and diesel engine, was donated to `Darul-‘Uloom for the good pleasure of Allah by Janab Haji Ibrahim Dadabhoy of South Africa. May Allah accept his gesture and reward him in the best possible manner here in this world and in the Hereafter.
On this donated property, another concerned Muslim, Haji Abdul-Latif Bawany Marhum spent a sum of one hundred thousand rupees personally and on behalf of his family as well as fifty eight thousand rupees collected from his friends. This helped to raise the necessary structures for the institution. May Allah bless him with the best of rewards in both the worlds. So, it was on the fifteenth of Sha’ban 1376 corresponding to March 17, 1957 that the Darul-‘Uloom shifted to the present buildings in Korangi. Left behind in the old Nanakwarah building there were departments of Hifz, Nazirah, Tajweed and Qira’ah.
Darul-‘Uloom, Karachi is a great center of education and training in religious sciences. This is the Darul-‘Uloom that has produced thousands of scholars, Hadith masters, Qur’an commentators, jurists, writers, judges, Fatwa authorities, men of Allah, mujahids in the way of Islam and the carriers of its message. Thus, the contribution made by Darul-‘Uloom to the preservation and dissemination of Deen consistently is significant. In a world consumed by material concerns, this home of knowledge and wisdom is a tower of light for all those who need it. And praised is Allah for that.
Muhammad Rafi Usmani
President, Darul-‘Uloom Karachi