On 8th July Sunday 2012 the Minhaj Women’s League in Bradford organised a grand programme that commemorated the 5th annual anniversary celebrating the success of the Halaqa e Durood in Bradford. The event was beautifully organised by President of Minhaj Women League, Mrs Jannat Elahi who allocated Mrs Riffat and Mrs Rubina Raja, Minhaj Women League members, to co-host the event. Mrs Riffat introduced the theme of the programme and thanked the audience for attending the blessed event. She also spoke briefly about the blessings of Durood Sharif. She stated that regular recital of Durood Sharif increases our love for the Holy Prophet (SAW) and establishes recognition between the person reciting the Durood Sharif and Holy Prophet (SAW)
The event unfolded with a beautiful recitation of the Holy Quran by Mrs Saima Saeedi Sahib. Soon after Mrs Jannat Elahi, president of Women’s League Bradford was called onto the stage to say a few words and she formally thanked the attendees for being present. She spoke about the different forms of Ibadah and how Durood Sharif is the most accepted amongst all, she stated that one must adopt the Wazifa of Durood Sharif so it becomes a constant Dhikr on our tongues.
After the brief introductions on the blessings of Durood Sharif, Mrs Sadiqa Bano was invited onto the stage to recite a Hamd. After the recital of the Hamd, Qasidah Burdah Sharif was recited which spiritually enlightened the atmosphere. Mrs Rubina Raja explained who Imam Busiri (may Allah’s mercy be upon him) is, the man behind the popular and beautiful Qasidah. Imam Busiri suffered a stroke which left him paralysed and unable to move, he composed the Qasidah in the period in which he suffered and was seen reciting it to the Holy Prophet (SAW) in a dream, the Prophet (SAW) threw his mantle over the paralysed part of the body and on awakening, Imam Busiri had been cured. The audience was mesmerised by such a beautiful example and the context behind the Qasidah.
Soon after, a series of Naats were recited in honour of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) by Mrs Nusrat Bibi, Ifra Kauser and Amira. After the recital of naats, the Halaqa e Durood awards ceremony took place; the prizes were given to different individuals who helped to establish as many Halaqas in Bradford as possible; prizes were also awarded to women whom submitted Durood Sharif in abundance throughout the year as a form of encouragement. Mrs Rubina Raja received the first prize for reciting the most Durood and Mrs Shakeela received a prize for establishing over 80 Halaqas. Awards were also given to women whom had submitted most amount of Durood Sharif - in millions - the honouree members for this were Mrs Jamila. Mrs Zeenat and also Mrs Shakeela Banu were awarded as they had also contributed greatly to the recital and consistent submitting of Durood Sharif. Prizes were also given to 2 women who were regular attendees of Gosha e Durood, Mrs Saida Sahiba and Mrs Tasleem Sahiba. Mrs Riffat went on to explain the beauty and passion of these sisters and explained how they would always be amongst the first to attend and recite Durood Sharif regardless of circumstances, attending even through extreme and dangerous weather, and how this is the state we should strive to be in when the matter of Durood Sharif arises.
Prizes were also awarded to women whom submitted the largest amount of Durood Sharif as an individual effort, the honouree members for this were Mrs Zaynab and Mrz Farzand. Mrs Rubina Raja explained to the audience that the purpose of the award ceremony was not to glorify certain individuals or an effort to degrade anyone but to encourage the rest of attendees to also strive to read Durood Sharif habitually and to make it a regular Wazifa, and also to encourage family and friends to do the same. Mrs Rubina Raja went on to explain how Minhaj ul Quran International is the only organisation in the world which emphasizes the recital of Durood Sharif on such a large scale. She also explained how in Minhaj ul Quran Lahore (Markaz) a system has been established in which Durood Sharif is constantly recited 24 hours around the clock making praise of the beloved perpetual. After Haramain Sharif, Minhaj ul Quran International prides itself for being the only organisation which has achieved this remarkable feat.
Certificates were also given to Muslim Youth League Sisters of Bradford, for their constant submission of Durood Sharif. It was emphasised how young people of today would, due to the blessings of Huzoor Sayyidi Shaykh ul Islam, gather every Sunday and recite durood sharif. The MYL-S gosha e durood is run by Sister Sumaira Kauser and Sister Afshaan Ahmed who have taken this responsibility to engage the students of Minhaj ul Qur’an to attend this gathering. Furthermore, on this 5th annual event, it was announced that from Saturday 14th June onwards, MYL will be establishing Halaqa’s around Bradford in an attempt to attract local sisters to attend. These will be rotated in different houses throughout the whole of Bradford and everyone is welcome to join. Amongst others honourees, Sister Sabha Imtiaz, of the MYL-S Bradford team was praised for her constant submission of Durood Sharif. The MWL praised the MYL for their success so far.
Shortly after the awards ceremony, Afsheen Shouket and Mariya Qadri, representatives of MYL-S Bradford, were invited on to the stage to give a joint presentation on the importance and benefits of Durood Sharif. Their talk was in English and was focused mainly at the youth present at the programme. They emphasized how reading Durood Sharif is compulsory upon every single believer and how Allah has ordained the believers to recite Durood Sharif in abundance with proper etiquette. They also stated how reciting Durood Sharif establishes a divine link with the Prophet Muhammad PBUH hence the recital of Durood Sharif fundamentally increases our love for the Prophet. The base of this topic was established using the book, Greetings and Salutations upon the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) by Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri. Sister Afsheen then urged the audience to attend the Muslim Youth League Gosha e Durood. Soon after, Sister Afshan and Sister Samaira gave the audience the details of the MYL Sisters Durood Sharif Halaqa, urging the youth to attend this Durood Sharif Mehfil and gain blessings from it. She also stated that if one is unable to attend physically then they could also submit their Durood Sharif by text or email. Afsheen Shouket, MYL-S Bradford member, was formally recognised for playing a big role in the production and printing of the Gosha e Durood Sharif booklets and she was also awarded with a certificate. Muslim Youth League Bradford sisters were also formally recognised for their achievements in the establishment and regular submission of Durood Sharif for the past year.
A surprise award was presented to Mrs Riffat for her hard work in collating together the Durood Sharif in Bradford for the past five years and organising the submission in a neat and a coherent structure. Mrs Rubina Raja commented that Gosha e Durood would not have been successful as it is without the efforts of Mrs Riffat. After receiving the prize, Mrs Riffat gave a brief motivational speech about the importance of joining Minhaj ul Quran and the significance of the membership. She stated that in contemporary society it is vital that one joins an organisation and follows a spiritual guide in order to stay guided.
The main speaker of the event Mrs Tahira from Nelson was introduced by Mrs Rubina Raja and was then invited onto the stage to deliver her talk. She spoke very eloquently and passionately about the concept of Durood Sharif in light of Surah Ahzab verse 56. In her speech she stated that Durood Sharif is essentially the Sunnah of Allah as he has instructed all the believers to recite it and also stated that He Himself is always sending Salaat upon his beloved, therefore when one recites Durood Sharif one is fulfilling the Sunnah of Almighty Allah. She also stated how, when we ask from Allah and praise his beloved and the family of his beloved ones, supplications are more likely to be accepted as by using an intermediary of the Prophet, one will be blessed by Almighty Allah. She mentioned the an awe inspiring incident of a man at the time of Prophet Musa who was a sinner however Allah Almighty ordered Prophet Musa to cleanse the man and perform his Janazah, upon questioning why this sinner was being given so much esteem it was revealed that he had kissed the name of the Prophet PBUH whilst reading the Torah and sent salutations upon the Holy Prophet (SAW), hence Almighty Allah’s mercy did not permit this man to go to hell as he had respected the beloved of Allah. She went on further to explain that on the day of Resurrection Durood Sharif will intercede for the believers.
The Dhikr was led by Amara Raja and the main guest Mrs Tahira concluded the event with a dua. Food was then served to all the participants. MWL Bradford would like to extend their deep gratitude to all whom have assisted in organising and being present in the Halaqa e Durood Sharif gatherings; we sincerely hope and pray that the Wazifa of Durood Sharif becomes a constant Dhikr for all of the Muslim Ummah.
Report by: Misbah Wahid