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Remembering great freedom fighter Maulana Mazharul Haque who led independence movement in Bihar

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Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

Maulana Mazharul Haque was not just a freedom fighter and leader but a champion of communal harmony who felt that Hindus and Muslims are in the same boat and will sail or sink together.

A visionary, a philosopher, he had come back from London after studying law. However, seeing the discrimination with native Indians and the attitude of the British officials, he quit judicial services soon.

After he returned to India in 1891, he dedicated himself to the nationalist movement. In fact, he was the leading figure from Bihar and had the trust of both Hindus and Muslims, who stood rock solid behind him. He was among the founders of Bihar state, which was carved out of greater Bengal.

He had started taking part in freedom struggle early and mobilized people.He took part in the Champaran movement, led in non-cooperation movement in Bihar. Selfless and dedicated to the nationalist cause, he even gave his own land for Sadaaqat Ashram and the Vidyapith.

Subsequently, he also published 'The Motherland', a journal, which is still remembered. Besides, he did a lot in the field of education in Bihar. One of the pioneering leaders, he was deeply interested in society and wanted to awaken people. Hence, he campaigned for participation of women in the movements. His work during the famine is well known.

The famed leader and a great ambassador of Hindu Muslim unity, Mazharul Haque passed away in 1930. "Mazharul Haque was a great patriot and a philosopher,such a man would be missed at all times, he will be more missed at this juncture in the history of the country", said Mahatma Gandhi on his death. 

"In the early days of non-cooperation Mazharul Haque played an important part in our great movement and was one of its chosen leaders. It is right that we houour his memory and pay our tribute to him", said Jawaharlal Nehru. Among other top leaders S Radhakrishnan said that the recognition to be so accorded to this great patriot assumes significance today when all our efforts are bent on creating a society free of all biases of religion and sectarianism.

Lal Bahadur Shastri said that Maulana Mazharul Haque will always be remembered as a selfless worker and a patriot who made his mark during Non-Cooperation Movement. Pattabhi Sitaramayya said that, "The purity of his nationalism was only excelled by the saintliness which attracted public attention and endeared him to the people of India in general and to the people of Bihar in particular". In his memory, Maulana Mazharul Haque University named after him, was set up in 1998. 

Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

Journalist for more than 20 years. Had started his career with National Mail in the nineties. Worked as Special Correspondent with Hindustan Times, as an Assistant Editor with DB Post, later Contributing Editor with The Huffington Post, writes for First Post, The Wire, Newsd & several other major publications.