‘Those to whom men said, ‘People have mustered against you, therefore fear them,’ but this only increased their faith, and they said, ‘Sufficient for us is Allah, and an excellent Guardian is He.’ (Qur’an. 170-174)
These are the words which embody within them the heroic story of Master Abdul Qudoos of Rabwah, Pakistan; a man who in the face of a great tyrant held onto, with life and limb, the words:
‘‘Sufficient for us is Allah.”
Abdul Qudoos heralded from a pious family which had the blessing of fulfilling a great Prophetic command by accepting the Imam Mahdi at his very own blessed hand through Abdul Qudoos’ grandfather who was a Companion of Hadrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as). His blessed grandmother, a Companion herself, also had the great distinction of offering her Bay’ah to the Imam Mahdi (as). He was married to a pious wife who bore him three sons, aged 14, 13 and 5, and a daughter who is 10 years old.
Born in 1968, Abdul Qudoos was an educator by profession and the President of his local Ahmadi Muslim community. His peers noted that he was a distinguished and praiseworthy man due to several of his noble qualities. He was hardworking, honest, very courteous and extra-ordinarily courageous. He had a great command over his temperament which, as we will come to know, could not be agitated by even the fiercest encounters. Most of all, he was a man who invested his time serving his family and local community as best he could. Noted for his excellent ability to swim, he was always the first to try and save the members of his local community, be they Ahmadi or not, who had accidents in the river. Commenting on him, Hadrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (abta), who had observed his qualities first hand in Rabwah, lovingly stated
”He was a personification of obedience…”
This heroic story begins some six months before the great martydom took place. A man in Abdul Qudoos’ local area had been
murdered for which the police arrested seveal suspects who were each released without charge. At the behest of the murdered man’s son, and some months later, Abdul Qudoos, President of the local Ahmadi chapter, was escorted to his local police station to be questioned by the police about the murder. On 10th February 2012 the police arrested Abdul Qudoos for the murder despite having no grounds on which to do so. They did not even register the fact that he had been arrested. The corruption of the police was compounded when they openly admitted, even at this early stage, that they knew he was an innocent man.
Nevertheless, the executioners had made up their minds.
Later, in mid March, and a month after his arrest, the so called police, his captors and tyrants, marched Abdul Qudoos to a grim location. He was kept their for ten days where he was tortured mercilessly. The tyrants, hypocrites of Islam, thought that they could share in God’s power, but they did not realise that while bones can be crushed and skin pierced, the faith (Iman) and inner strength (‘Izzat) of a true believer (mu’min) cannot be dismantled.
Abdul Qudoos was finally released by his captors with his body battered and bruised. He was immediately taken to a local hospital where he himself recounted what had transpired during those dark ten days.
He related that the police took him in the shadows of the night to a location about five hours drive from where he was initially kept. The objective of his captors quickly became clear; they wanted him to falsely testify, in writing, that the senior members of the Ahmadi Muslim Community had perpetrated the murder for which he was himself falsely arrested. This would give them free license to falsely and corruptly arrest the Ahmadi hierarchy and strike a serious blow against the Community in Pakistan. The situation was made all the more tense by that fact that his captors were not ordinary street criminals, but high ranking members of the police force who took great pleasure in telling Abdul Qudoos that this was the first time they had captured an office bearer of the Community and that they would torture him.
Abdul Qudoos, firm in his faith, refused to betray his faith by signing any document or making false statements. They again insisted that he make the false allegation to which he again courageously refused. The tyrants then threw him to the ground and mercilessly beat him, continuously demanding that he complied. These foul hypocrites then became enraged by the strength of faith and resolve displayed by Abdul Qudoos and so they spent the next day inflicting extreme torture upon him. This included beating him whilst hung upside down by his ankles, striking him with dozens of blows at a time and a number of tyrants pinning him to the ground as another would roll a large and heavy wooden roller over his body. He was also subjected to psychological torture through severe sleep deprivation. He would be allowed to periodically doze off at which point his captors would immediately beat him again. If this brutality was not enough to quench their thirst, when his body could take little more beating they would treat his wounds only so that they could again begin his torture sessions.
The brave Abdul Qudoos recounted that on account of the fact that he did not feel he could withstand the brutality of his torture, he earnestly prayed that Almighty Allah would give him the strength to withstand it.
His prayers where answered to such a degree that he said the pain endured when his bones and internal organs were being crushed could not compare to the pain he felt when his captors would insult his beloved Imam of the Age, Hadrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (as), and the noble Ahmadi Caliphs.
Following a month and a half in prison, no charges and ten days of severe torture, the tyrants finally released Abdul Qudoos into the care of a friend who immediately took him to a local hospital. He had lost a great deal of blood during his ordeal and it was clear that his kidneys and other internal organs had been severely damaged. He was asked in hospital by a representative of the Community if, under the severe torture, he had understandably given in to even some small demand of his captors? In an emotional and charged response, Abdul Qudoos stated that his captors could not even make him write a dot let alone anything of any worth to them.
Abdul Qudoos’ dear wife relates that earlier in life her husband may have had a premonition that he would offer his life in the way of Almighty Allah as he used to say to her that she would later miss him when he was gone. This inevitability became apparent to Abdul Qudoos Sahib when he was in hospital and so on the 29th March 2012 he made a few efforts settle his humble affairs. Turning his bruised and blessed face to his four young children, he offered them the final loving advice of a father to his children:
Always remain steadfast and attached to the Institution of Khilafat.
Later that day he started vomiting blood which badly affected his lungs. The following day, on 30th March 2012, he left this world and became Master Abdul Qudoos Shahid (rh):
Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’un
Sureley to Allah we belong, and unto Him shall we return
NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN
Commenting on the great sacrifice of Abdul Qudoos Shahid (rh), Hadrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (abta) stated in his Friday sermon on 6th April 2012:
”…this is the tale of one who kept his faith alive and stayed firm on truth. This personification of resolve and courage gave his life but did not give a false statement. God has declared falsehood tantamount to shirk (associating partners with God) and while this great martyr has given us other lessons, one lesson he gave us and on which the Ahmadiyya Community is based, is not to care for one’s life for the establishment of Tawheed, (Oneness of God).”
In the same sermon, the beloved of the Community, the Leader of the Faithful, stated that the sacrifice offered by Abdul Qudoos Shahid (ra) did not amount to an ordinary martyrdom, but is ranked among the high martyrdoms. Paying tribute to him, Hudur (abta) stated:
‘O Qudoos, we pay tribute to you; for you accepted to endure extreme torture but did not let the honour of the Jama’at be slighted. By giving your life you saved the Jama’at from a great tribulation…
Fortunate is Qudoos sahib who is called living by God and who has been given a provision which is far more excellent than [any] worldly provision. He will find out the true glad-tiding in the Hereafter. We should always remember the lesson of ‘Sufficient for us is Allah, and an excellent Guardian is He’ that he gave us.