Al-Barkaat: A spiritual-educational mission that is crafting youth for future 

In close proximity of historical Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), an educational society, that derives its philosophical sustenance from great Indian sufi traditions, is serving the society, especially weaker sections of Muslims, so that they can attain quality education. Established and managed by scions of renowned Persian and Hindi Sufi poet, Syed Shah Barkatullah of Marehra Sharif in the District of Etah in Uttar Pradesh, the society runs a number of institutes like nursery school, secondary school, management college and coaching centre. All these institutes also have hostel facilities.

The Journey

The Al-Barkaat Educational Society which began its journey in 1995 has been growing, blooming and moving ahead ever since. It owes its inception to the profound vision of its founder president Professor (retd) Syed Muhammad Amin Miya Barkaati. He is the moving spirit and the light behind this novel project of establishing various educational institutes: Al-Barkaat Play and Learn Centre, Al-Barkaat Public School (+2), Al-Barkaat College of Graduate Studies, Al-Barkaat Institute of Management Studies, Al-Barkaat Institute of Education and Al-Barkaat Islamic Research and Training Institute.

With a clear aim to establish and administer educational institutions, as guaranteed under Article 30 of the Indian Constitution, the Society established Al-Barkaat Institute of Management Studies in 2004.

Al-Barkaat Educational Society (ABES) aims to establish and administer educational institutions under the rights and duties as provided under Article 30 of the Indian Constitution.

The Society derives inspiration from the life and teachings of a galaxy of illustrious sufis of Khanqah-e-Barkaatiya, Mahrehra Sharif, District Etah, Uttar Pradesh.

The family is headed by Sajjada Nasheen of Khanqah-e-Barkaatiya, Prof. S.M. Amin includes names which have long association with academics and education and have keen interest in developing quality educational institutions.

The Society is indebted to the eminent scholars from Aligarh Muslim University for their invaluable contribution in developing its educational plans.

The Success

Every year, students of various institutes of Al-Barkaat have scripted success with their notable performances. Students have scores meritoriously in Class 10, 12 examinations. Graduates have moved onto higher studies in various leading universities of India and are pursuing streams of their choice. Besides, Al Barkaat students have been regularly participating in various competitive and sports activities in Aligarh, UP and all across the country.

The thrust, according to Mohammed Aman Miyan, son of Prof Mohd Amin Mian, is to prepare students for competitive examinations in a way that they also remain rooted to their core cultural values.

President of Al Barkaat Educational Society, Prof Amin Miya, said that the objective of the society is noble and based on the sole goal of providing quality and value-based education to the youth of our society so that they can become deserving leaders in future.

“I am highly honoured to superintend this institute which, over these years, has become a part of my very being along with its irrefutable innovations in the field of training and child personality development. The guiding principles of the institute are ‘creation of awareness, competence and proficiency’ among students so that they can face the life-challenges with their broad shoulders and never shy away from the difficulties of any sphere of life. Al Barkaat imparts the students a target-oriented education to groom them for a world that is still in the developing stage with so many goals yet unachieved. The pinpointed aims of imparting knowledge merged with creativity are only but some among the volumes of aspirations to forge an ultra energetic youth. I hope this mission will bear its desired fruits,” he said.

Introduction to Khanqah e Barkatiya

Khanqah e Barkatiya is a very renowned khanqah of Qadri order. Its silsila is widely known as Barkati Silsila. It originated in Bilgram, India and is named after Shah Barkatullah, the Saint of Marehra and its followers are known as Qadri Barkati. It is a sub-branch of the Qadri Silsila of Baghdad.

Shah Barkatullah, great-grandson of Mir Abdul Jaleel Wasiti Bilgrami (Born 13th Shawwal 1071 Hijri) originally followed the Chishti Order of Sunni Mysticism in India. However, on visiting Kalpi he was initiated into the Qadri order by Syed Shah Fadhlullah.

Shah Barkatullah, a versatile poet, wrote in both the Braj and Persian languages. His collective works in Braj entitled “Pem Prakaas” have been a focus of both Hindu and Muslim academic attention. Similarly “Diwan-e-Ishqui” is a collection of works in Persian under the alias Ishqui Marehravi.

He was a key figure in Indian Sufism under the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb Alamgir.

His eldest son, Shah Aley Muhammad, continued his legacy dedicating himself to meditation and Dhikr. His son, Syed Shah Hamza, the third Qutub of Marehra, wrote many treatises on various Islamic Mystical subjects of which Kaashiful Astaar and Fassul Kalimaat are very famous.

Shah Hamza’s son Syed Shah Aley Ahmad Achchey Miyan possessed a miraculous personality. He cured the ailing masses through his spiritual powers and became so popular that the town of Marehra came to be known as the Marehra of Achchey Miyan.

The eldest brother of Shah Amir-e-Alam, namely Syed Shah Aley Rasool Ahmadi, was a spiritual doyen of high caliber. He embodied the dynamics of Chishti and Qadri order.

He was followed by Hazrat Shah Abul Hussain Ahmad-e-Noori (alias Miyan Sahab) who was the last Qutub of the Marehra dynasty. Thus the Dargah of Shah Barkatullah is a unique monastery where seven saints in the category of Qutub lay under one dome.

The seat of Hazrat Noori Miyan was inherited by his cousin Syed Shah Mehdi Hasan Sahab who was revered by the rulers of princely states like the Nizam of Hyderabad, the Nawab of Farrukhabad, and the Nawab of Rampur State.

This silsila was widely propagated by Syedul Ulema, Syed Shah Aley Mustafa Syed Marehrvi and Ahsanul Ulema, Syed Shah Mustafa Haider Hasan Marehrvi.

Syed Miyan of Marehra was also an established Aalim and Mufti of his time. He obtained his post graduation degree in Islamic Studies from Ajmer and Lahore. His Fatwas were produced in the High Court of Bombay to settle the property disputes and Talaq issues. He was the community Qazi of the Bakr Qassab Jama’t in Mumbai as well as their Imam. He was the Sajjadah-Nasheen and Mutawalli of Dargah Shah Barkatullah in Marehra. He toured almost every part of the country and communicated to the masses the message of oneness and brotherhood. He wrote three books namely, Muqaddas Khatoon, Nai Roshni and Faiz-e-Tambih. Syed Miyan was an Urdu poet of high standard in the legacy of his uncle, Hazrat Ahsan Marehravi, the most favorite disciple of Dagh Dehlavi.

The younger brother of Hazrat Syedul Ulema was Hazrat Syed Shah Mustafa Haider Hasan Miya Marehrwi. He was the direct successor of Hazrat Syed Shah Ismail Hasan Sahib Marehrwi and Hazrat Syed Shah Mohammad Miya Marehrwi.

Ahsanul Ulema, Hazrat Hasan Miyan Qadri was Sajjadanasheen and established a pure khanqahi system in his khanqah. He propagated the message of Islam and sunnat through his pious acts and verbal communication to his followers. He patronized various institutions of religious and contemporary education. He had four sons: first, Syed Mohd Amin Miyan Qadri (former Professor, A.M.U, Aligarh); second, Syed Mohd. Ashraf Miyan Qadri IRS (Commissioner of Income Tax, Delhi); third (late) IPS Syed Mohd Afzal Miyan Qadri (ADG, MP) and fourth, Syed Mohd. Najeeb Haider Qadri (Sajjada-Nasheen Khanqah e Barkatiya of Noori Gaddi).

– Dr Shujaat Ali Quadri

(The Author is Chairman of Muslim Students Organisation of India and Community Leader)