Emergence of Religious Scholars of Usul al-Fiqh during Mughal-Ottoman Relations

Dr. Farooq Hassan *
Associate Professor, Department of Humanities, NED University of Engineering & Technology Karachi, Pakistan.


Egypt and Hijaz (Makkah and Medina) became part of the Ottoman Empire during the reign of Saleem 1, (1512-20 AD), 9th Ottoman Sultan. Sultan Sulayman the Magnificent (r. 1520-66) ruled over an intercontinental empire spread Europe, Asia, and Africa. Historical records show that the Mughal Emperors (1526-1857) had relations with Ottomans on multifarious grounds, Humayun (d.1556), 2nd Mughal Emperor, had handed over an imperial letter, addressed to Sulayman, to the shipwrecked Ottoman Admiral Sidi Ali Reis, which acknowledging the sultan as the ‘Khalifa of highest qualities’ and ‘adorner of the throne of the khalifa’. Diplomatic Indian-Ottoman relations (1526-1923) provided breeding grounds for fresh ideas, free flow of information, and production of great works in Usul al-Fiqh by Indian Muslim scholars. A significant number of Indian scholars visited and lived in the Ottoman Central Lands, gained knowledge, came back, and shared this knowledge of Usul al-fiqh with local Shari’a scholars and students. Shaykh Ahmed, known as Mulla Jeevan, a Hanafi Indian scholar (d.1717), went to Hijaz and wrote a remarkable book (Nurul Anwar Sharh ul-Manar), which is still included as an essential part of the syllabus in almost all religious schools (madrasa) of sub-continent. This work is based on qualitative, historical, archival, and descriptive research that discusses the Indian-Ottoman shared legacy of Usul al-fiqh and contains the authors’ brief treaties in chronological order.


Indian-Ottoman Relation, Usul-e-Fiqh, Islamic legal experts, Ulama-e-hind


Vol 4

Issue 2

July – December 2021