(This speech was delivered on the eve of the 100th Anniversary of Darul-Uloom of Deoband, India held on March 1980)
In the name of Allah, the merciful, the compassionate.
Call to mind when ye were a small (band), Despised through the land, And afraid that men might despoil and kidnap you; But He provided a safe asylum for you, strengthened you With his aid, and gave you good things for substance: That ye might be grateful.
Dear friends and brothers in Islam!
The quranic verse from the chapter “Al-Anfal” that I have just read to you descended upon my mind here and now. I felt as if an unseen power whispered to me. “Look at this large throng of Muslims, a gathering in hundreds of thousands, which has been drawn to this small place today in the name of Islam”. In the first century of the hijra it would not have occurred even to a person of extraordinary wisdom, ambition, and foresightedness that such a large number would ever come together just for the love of Islam in a small place like this, situated so far away from the Arabian peninsula and so different from it in regards to language, culture, law and national and racial heritage.
Friends! Ponder again on the above Quranic verse and recall the circumstances in which Muslims of the first century of the Islamic calendar had to live in Medina. They were, as this verse informs us, only a handful then – not more than a few thousand in all. Weak and vulnerable, they suffered from a constant fear that the enemies of Islam might suddenly fall upon them, seize them by force, and do away with them (here the word takhattul has been used in the Quran which means “to snatch away something by forcibly gabbing it”). At that time Muslims were an easy prey to non-believers. No superpower was needed to destroy them; the tribe of the Quraish alone was sufficient to blow out the light of Islam forever.
Live To Lead-A Call To Indian Muslims