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Guest Impressions

A Hindu Girl Reverts To Islam

AN INTERVIEW WITH MUHTARAMAH SHEHNAAZ SAHIBAH.

Driven out of her home by a cruel stepmother, sister Shehnaaz went through a great test, finally seeing the light of Islam. She married an Aalim and found herself in the beautiful city of Madinah.Here she is interviewed by Sister Asmaa of Armughan Magazine in India. Read her moving interview. Though the article is long, it is worth the read.



ASMAA [The Journalist]  Assalamualaikum WarahmatullahiWabarakatuhu.

SHEHNAAZ [The Revert] Wa alaykumussalaam Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuhu.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Dear Shehnaaz, Alhamdulillah we have reached the beloved city of our
Nabi [S.A.W]. It is the right of this beautiful and sacred city that
we acquire the zeal of Knowledge here. You are aware of our Armughan
[Urdu monthly magazine published in Phulat Dist Muzafar Nagar U.P
India]. For some time now, interviews with fortunate new Muslims are
published in this monthly magazine to create a zeal for inviting
towards Islam. It is my father's desire, that I speak to you, so that
this interview be published in one of the future magazines. It will be
a great blessing to have your talks from Madinah Munawwarah published
in Armughan.

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
My brother had informed me over the phone; certainly, it will also be
a means of happiness for me, so that I can also have a share in this
noble and esteemed method of Dawat.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Tell us more about your family.

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
I was born in the educated Mulhutra family in the city of Jammu. I
was born on the 4th of May 1975. My father Kal Deep Mulhutra was a
lecturer of Commerce. My mother was a very noble and troubled lady.
From a small age she had fallen ill. As fate had it she never saw
happiness after marriage. I was 5 to 6 years old when she passed away.
I had one elder brother Sandeep Mulhutra. He was 10 years old. One day
my mother took me to the seaside to drown me. One man saw her standing
on the bridge. When he asked her the reason she said, "I have come to
drown my daughter. If her fate is as evil as mine then she will spend her
entire life in misery. So it is better that she dies now." The man
begged my mother and explained to her that this girl's fate will be
very beautiful. He told her not to worry about me and not to drown me.
He spoke to my mother with such sympathy that she changed her mind
about drowning me. She took me home and passed away after one year.
Six months after the death of my mother, my father remarried. My
stepmother was very harsh to me. May Allah Ta'ala reward her for her
favours. She overloaded me with work. In these adverse conditions I
passed my matric. My house was a jail, in fact hell for me. I was
frustrated with this oppression to such an extent that on many
instances I decided to commit suicide. Once I took an overdose of
sleeping tablets. Many a times I climbed the mountain and tried
falling but my Most Honourable Allah wanted to favour me. Therefore
none of my attempts to commit suicide were successful. My stepmother
would complain to my dad and incite him against me. Instead of having
pity for me he would scold me. I used to go to the temples and Mazars
and instead of worshipping, I would ask when will my dark nights turn
into daylight? Will it ever happen or not? But how could the lifeless
reply to me? If I only knew this verse of the Quraan I would not have
turned to these lifeless objects. When I read the Quraan today, I feel
that this verse of the Quraan was revealed concerning me.

[Surah Fatir. Verse 14] Translation
If you invoke [or call upon] them, they hear not your call, and if
[in case] they were to hear, they could not grant it [your request] to
you. And on the day of Resurrection, they will disown your worshiping
them and none can inform you (Oh Muhammad [S.A.W]) like Him Who is The
All Knower of Everything.

One day I saw a person being buried and I told my friend that I'd
also like to be buried and not cremated. My stepmother would scold me
daily and used to make up new stories so that my father could also
scold me. One day she accused me of taking 500 rupees from her purse.
This was the final straw and I couldn't take it any longer. And I
thought that she had accused me of stealing, since she hates my very
existence, tomorrow she will accuse me of something greater. I had 100
rupees on me and a few sets of clothes. With these belongings I left
home for good.


QUESTION – Asmaa
Tell us how you accepted Islam?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
Actually that was my intention, and that is where the discussion is
heading. It was the favour of my stepmother upon me that her harsh
treatment became the means of my guidance. I gave my life to my Most
Honourable Sustainer Who took me out of darkness and showered His
Mercy and Guidance upon me. When I left home I had a bag of clothing
in my hand. Our house was in a narrow lane. As I was coming out of the
lane my father was returning home from college. My father passed me
but some how he did not see me, otherwise he would have taken me back
home and I don't know what he would have done. I reached the railway
station. Before this I had never stepped out of the house. I purchased
a ticket for Delhi and sat in the train departing for Delhi. I did not
even know which cabin to sit in. I climbed into a cabin occupied by
soldiers. Those poor soldiers, on seeing a girl, gave me place. The
train left. The conductor came and upon seeing me in the soldiers
cabin requested for my ticket. The soldier sitting next to me said
that I was his sister. This was only the help of my Allah. After
making me his sister, he took care of me throughout the journey like a
sister. He emptied the upper seat and asked me to sleep, and
repeatedly consoled me and told me not to worry. With comfort I
reached Delhi. As I came out of the station I saw the city bus
arriving. I boarded it. Two young lads were sitting next to me and
talking among themselves. From their talks, I gauged that they were
noble people. I told them, "Brothers! Can you show me a girls' hostel
here in Delhi?" They asked me about my condition and I explained my
situation to them. They understood my condition and helplessness. They
said that the girls' hostel was far. They asked me to meet their
sister and relax with her. She is learned and she will take me to the
girls' hostel herself. There are no males at her house. Seeing their
nobility, I felt comfortable. They took me to South extension where
their sister lived. Their sister treated me very well and gave me
breakfast as well and suggested that I stay at her place for one or
two days. She gave me the assurance that she herself will take me to a
good girls' hostel. Then she asked me to meet one of her relatives
[Ishrat Sahab] and thereafter I should decide about the hostel. I went
 to Ishrat Sahib's office. After interviewing me for some time he
called a lady from his office and sent me with her to his widowed
sister's house. She had a relative [Aarif Sahib] who would visit her.
He explained to me about idol worshipping. His talks made sense to me
and I began thinking of idol worshipping as the height of stupidity.
Gradually the dealings of the Muslims, their dignity, their dignified
behaviour towards a young girl and the introduction to some Islamic
teachers, drove me towards Islam and one day I expressed my desire to
become a Muslim. He explained to me that  Imaan is the greatest
necessity of every human being but I was troubled. You are staying
with us. It should not be that you accept Islam out of compulsion or
to repay our kindness and sympathy towards you. But after thinking and
regarding the religion of Islam as your greatest need, if you wish to
accept Islam there will be no end to our happiness, that one of our
sisters will be saved from the fire of hell forever. With utmost
happiness and ease I told him I would like to accept Islam. They made
me recite the Kalima. I expressed the desire to learn the teachings of
Islam. Thus they sent me to Mewat.

QUESTION – Asmaa
In the village like environment of Mewat you must have felt very strange?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
Initially it was a bit difficult, but thereafter I adapted to it. My
stay there for the sake of seeking Islamic knowledge proved very
beneficial. Alhamdulillah, I learnt Namaaz etc properly. Within 9-10
months I learnt some parts of the Noble Quraan and Urdu as well.

QUESTION – Asmaa
How did you get married to Moulana Jawed Ashraf Nadwi Sahib?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
When I retuned from Mewat to Delhi, Aarif Sahib proposed my marriage to a boy
from Barah Banky. Unfortunately this boy was not religiously minded.
At this stage, Islam was my life. Filled with fear, I nonetheless
broached the subject to Aarif Sahib that he should look for a
religiously minded boy for me, even though the boy is poor.
 Upon my wish he rejected the former proposal. Thereafter Aarif Sahib
placed an advertisement for his own daughter's marriage in the paper
Qawmi Aawaz. Moulana Jawed Ashraf saw this advert. He had already been
married but unfortunately, rather fortunately for me, that marriage
did not work out and he was divorced. His parents were deceased. When
he saw the advertisement, and against the wishes of his brothers he came
to Aarif Sahib to propose. Perhaps, due to this being Moulana's second
marriage, or out of sheer love for me, or because they did not suit
each other, Aarif Sahib decided to refer him to me. He requested me to
marry Moulana. During this time I had compiled my autobiography and
the story of my accepting Islam in a book called [The Bitter Truth].
Aarif Sahib presented this book to Moulana. When he saw this book he
was very impressed and expressed the desire to meet me. We met and
proposed to each other. A few days later, after Zuhr my Nikah
took place. Moulana could not take me to his house because he feared
opposition from his family members. He took me to Lucknow and then to
Bombay to one of his friends, Mufti Abdul Hameed Sahib's house. We
stayed at his place for one year. Mufti Sahib and his mother treated
me better than how my own mother and father would treat me.

QUESTION – Asmaa
How did you come to Madinah Munawwarah?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
The wind of Allah's favours blew upon me. Moulana Jawed Ashraf Sahib
enrolled at Madinah University. Moulana somehow called me to Madinah
Munawwarah on an Umrah Visa. Allah Ta'ala granted me the love of
Madinah. I did not want to return and for years I lived in Madinah
illegally. Allah granted me 3 children in Madinah Munawwarah. My
Kareem Allah granted me the pleasure of getting lost in the lanes and
streets of Madinah. He also granted me an extremely soft spoken,
tolerant, good natured and generous husband in the form of Moulana.
Above all, Allah Ta'ala granted me the honour of living in Madinah and
made me forget all my past worries.

QUESTION – Asmaa
How did you meet Hazrat Mufti Aashiq Ilahi Bulandshahri's family?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
My husband Moulana Sahib is very modest. He is filled with awe when
meeting any great personality. I learnt that a great Aalim, Hazrat
Mufti Aashiq Ilahi of our place [India], resides here. I went to his
house and met with his wife Ammi Jaan. My first meeting and
introduction with her made her compassionate towards me. She told
Mufti Sahib about me. Mufti Sahib was extremely concerned about Dawat
amongst non-Muslims, and as a result he kept close contact with our
father [i.e. Asmaa's father] Moulana Kaleem Sahib. They called for my
husband and both of them accepted me as their daughter. In reality,
they took care of me like a true father and mother would. Ammi Jaan,
despite her weakness, sews my children's clothes with her own hands
and she makes them wear it. If I invite somebody for meals, she
prepares something herself and brings it. I cannot explain how much
she loves me and my children. Hazrat Mufti Sahib's love for my entire
family has no limits. Hazrat's house folks, sons and daughters treat
me as their sister. In fact they show more concern for me than they do
for all the other sisters.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Our Dadi also calls you her daughter and thinks of you a lot. How did
you meet up with her?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
My husband, Moulana Jawed was in contact with your father, Moulana
Kaleem Sahib. Once he, Moulana Kaleem Sahib, brought his mother, your
dadi for Umrah and I went to meet her. Being a resident of Madinah, I
tried my best to be hospitable to her and she developed a  liking for
me. I am telling you through experience that Allah Ta'ala has kept a
lot of effect in serving humanity. If a person is habitual in serving
mankind then he will make a place for himself in a heart that is as
hard as stone also. The desire for serving my elders is inborn in me.
I derive a lot of pleasure in washing their clothes, massaging their
heads or pressing their legs. Elderly women also need to be served and
the elderly give you dua very quickly from the depths of their hearts.
If a person sacrifices his comforts and serves a person, then this is
a means for his Dunya and Hereafter becoming successful. I have found
the dua of the elderly to be very effective.

QUESTION – Asmaa
People from all over the world have come to Madinah Munawwarah. I
have heard that if a distant acquaintance or a friend comes to meet
you, you stand up for them on one foot. [i.e. you do everything
possible for them]. You have four small children and you give tuition
as well. Don't you get tired?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
My Allah has honoured me by making me a resident of Madinah
Munawwarah. He has placed hospitality towards guests and the welfare
of visitors in the atmosphere and water of Madinah Munawwarah. We are
forced, without any choice of ours, to take pleasure in hosting and
serving the visitors of Madinah Munawwarah. I think in my heart that
these people are the guests of Nabi [S.A.W] and the details of our
actions are conveyed to him. How pleased he would be when his guests
are hosted and treated well. When this is the case, then how can there
be fatigue? Oh my beloved, this thought alone, that we are being given
the honour of hosting and serving the guests of Nabi [S.A.W], brings
us so much of pleasure. I serve my children also understanding it to
be the order of Allah. I give tuition in order to lessen the burden of
my honourable husband. Alhamdulillah, due to this niyyah I get
pleasure in everything that I do. In reality, after doing the work, I
feel happy. Our Deen has favoured us greatly by instructing us to
purify our intentions. If the intention is correct then there is
pleasure in everything.

QUESTION – Asmaa
I have heard that you do not wish to leave Madinah Munawwarah and you
have also received offers from other places as well?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
In reality the person who has seen Madinah, how can it happen that he
wishes to go anywhere besides Jannah. My last and final wish is that I
be buried in the soil of Baqi. You also make dua. [Whilst crying…]
When I see the pigeons here I make dua that 'Oh Allah! Just you have
destined the seeds of Baqi for these pigeons, grant me the sand upon
which the mubarak feet of Rasulullah [S.A.W] walked.'

QUESTION – Asmaa
Did you not find out about your family? Did they not search for you?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
Maybe they did look for me. Actually they were convinced that I had
committed suicide. Since last year, I am in contact with my father and
brother. A student from Jammu  was studying in Madinah Munawwarah. Hr
gave my father my address and he became very restless. When I had gone
to India to extend my visa, then very reluctantly I met him in old
Delhi. He cried profusely. When I related to him the entire history he
was very regretful. Now he phones me every second or third day.
Moulana Jawed Ashraf and myself have invited him to Islam. He has left
idol worshipping. We have requested your father Ml.Kaleem Sahib. In
fact, he on his own has taken his address from us. He has handed the
task to his friends and he has given us the hope, that Insha Allah he
will accept Islam.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Is your stepmother alive? Have you tried contacting her?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
Yes, she is alive. I spoke to her once over the phone. She apologized
a lot and asked me to forgive her. But I am most grateful to her for
my good fortune. It was her oppression that became a means of my
guidance. I made dua for her at the Multazam and on every special
occasion. My Allah is very Unique that I consider all her oppression
as the favours of the last degree. I weep bitterly and make dua for
her guidance. During the previous Hajj, in Arafat, the most dua I made
was for her.


QUESTION – Asmaa
What are your intention regarding your children's education?
Here in the Saudi Arabian schools, the system is very strange. Our
intention is that every child of ours becomes a Daaee [one who calls
to Islam] and serves Deen. Alhamdulillah I also, have begun
translating Mufti Aashiq Ilaahi's Tafseer, [Anwaarul Bayaan], into the
Hindi language during his lifetime. It is my wish that Allah accepts
this service of the Quraan Hakeem from me. That is why more than the
Madrassah, we are concerned about their upbringing and learning at
home.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Would you like to give a message to the Muslims through the Armughaan
magazine?

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
I can only request that they understand their position, meet with
non-Muslims, adorn themselves with the ways of Islam, become an
embodiment of Dawat [invitation to Islam] and through their actions
introduce Nabi [S.A.W]. if the way of life of our Nabi [S.A.W] comes
before the people, then instead of them making actors, leaders and
players their ideal, they will make our Nabi [S.A.W] their ideal.
There can never be any other way more alluring than this. Secondly,
Islam should be conveyed to the masses through the radio
* TV and media, and for this one should establish a movement.

 N.B: This is this sister's view. We [i.e. translator] beg to differ from this

My second wish is that they make dua for me that Allah Ta'ala accepts
me to invite to his Deen, and he takes some work from me. This is my
only worry and concern that my progeny and myself are accepted for the
service of Deen and more especially for inviting to Deen. Some of our
colleagues tell us that you are staying for such a long time in
Madinah and you have not as yet built your  own name? Usually I tell
them that we are here in Madinah to become part of Baqi. To enjoy this
world we would have gone to Paris and New York. This I tell them in
reply to their question. Otherwise it is my belief that the enjoyment
and comfort of the worldly life also is found in the life of Madina.
The people of Paris will not even get to rest in its soil.

QUESTION – Asmaa
Jazakallah, sister Shehnaaz. You also make dua for us. I am very
envious of you.

ANSWER – Shehnaaz
Beloved Asmaa. I had heard your name from a long time and I used to
read it in Armughaan. My eyes would crave to see you. I am envious of
you. We are staying in Madina Munawwarah. We are fortunate enough to
live in the city of Nabi [S.A.W]. But you are doing the work of Nabi
[S.A.W], in fact his most beloved work. May Allah Ta'ala make you
visit Madina Munawwarah, in fact the Haramain Sharifain again and
again with special acceptance and blessings. Aameen!

 

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