When Kashmir, in the late eighties, was going through a reconstruction of political thought and Ummah confronted subjugation, within and beyond, an icon of revolution, Dr. Qazi Nisar Ahmad, who was from the historical township of Islamabad (Anantnag), showed the way forward.
Dr. Ahmad studied and analyzed the political exploitation and tactful subjugation of Muslims, a majority community, by the elite class and the bureaucracy. Through the relentless scholarly efforts, he rose up to the occasion to remove the shackles of despondency, fear and stood up roaring like a lion against the winds of fascist and exploitative mindset. He infused the strength of unity and a vision in the Ummah, which was the need of the hour to face the challenges.
His scientific approach and tireless efforts to assemble the Ummah under one banner led to the formation of an unprecedented organization–where Shia, Sunni, and other sub-sects of the Ummah came together–Ummat-i-Islami.
Then Dr. Ahmad gave a formal shape to his political vision and formed the Muslim United Front (MUF). The party also participated in the J-K assembly elections of 1987, however, the results were rigged in favor of a unionist party, National Conference.
Dr. Ahmad analysed it as a deliberate act to demoralise the Muslim community. However, his veteran personality, with a deep political maturity and broader outlook, came across with more vibrant synergy, asking for a peaceful solution in Jammu and Kashmir, in line with United Nations resolutions–a 1947 guideline for a de-escalation between India and Pakistan and a subsequent framework for the plebiscite.
Dr. Ahmad led the Ummah with all responsibility towards the attainment of the cherished goal through a disciplined mass movement. His oratory skills, hold on the Arabic language, and utter discipline to achieve freedom for his nation, made him a household name.
He also established various institutions, including the Islamic Research Institute, Islamic Relief Trust, and a blood-bank. He believed these institutions would become the backbone of the Kashmir Movement. Many of these are still functioning in Islamabad (Anantnag), south Kashmir, supporting economically-backward people.
On 19 June 1994, Dr. Ahmad attained martyrdom. Since then, every year, Kashmir observes 19 June as Shaheed-i-Millat and remembers him as an affectionate leader, an educationist, and a religious scholar.
But the mission that he started meticulously has not stopped. Instead, it is ahead with the same spirit under the dynamic leadership of Dr. Qazi Ahmad Yasir, Dr. Ahmad’s elder son.
The biggest tribute to Shaheed-i-Millat on this is to pledge to carry forward his sacred mission with the alertness of mind and soul.