Allah Ta’ala has created Hadhrat Saharanpْri a man of many attributes. While his spiritual benefits on the one hand are being perpetuated in the form of Madrasah Mazaaharal Uloom, on the other hand a great and wonderful organisation of tarbiyat is related to him. Then there are his books which he had compiled and written after long and thorough research and in-depth study. These are wonderful objects in his memory. Some of his works were occasioned by specific circumstances. These books will be briefly outlined.
1) After completion of his academic studies in 1288 Hijri (1871), his natural desire for the subject of Adab (Arabic Literature) took him to Lahore. After accomplishing his study at Lahore, his maternal uncle, Hadhrat Maulana Yaqْb sent him to Munsْri Hill to translate Qaamْs (a famous Arabic dictionary) into Urdu. Although this was Hadhrat’s first literary undertaking, it could not be ascertained if the book was completed or not.
2) Hadhrat had written a voluminous book of 888 pages in refutation of Shi’ism in 1306 while he was employed as the Sadr Mudarris (Chief Ustaad) of Madrasah Dinyaat in Bhawalpْr. The name of the book is Hidaayaatur Rashid ilaa Ifhaamil Aneed.
This book was the outcome of numerous debates and disputes initiated with Hadhrat by a malicious, anti-Sunni follower of Shi’ism, viz. one Sayyid Chiragh Shah who was the administrative officer (in charge of Deeni education in Bhawalpْr).
3) Molvi Abdus Sami’ Rampْri had published a book, Anwaar-e-Saatiah on the issue of Moulood and Faatihah. This book was an endeavour to prove the validity on the customary acts of bid’at related to these practices. In this book the author made a concerted attempt to pass off innovationary customs in the guise of Sunnat and Mustahab. In refutation of this book, Hadhrat wrote, Al-Baraahinul Qaatiah alaa Zullaamil Anwaaris Saatiah in 1304. It consists of 279 pages.
4) Hafiz Amirullah Barelwi was involved with a Shiah in a debate on some contentious masaa-il. He went to the Ulama of Barelwi for aid. But, they could offer none. Molvi Ahmad Raza Khan said in response to his request: “Give a thousand rupees and take the answer.” When asked the reason for wanting this large sum, he replied that it was needed to purchase books on Shi’ism which will be studied. Thereafter an answer would be forthcoming.
Finally, Hafiz Amirullah was constrained to go to Hadhrat Saharanpْri who wrote down the answers immediately. He then commenced writing a book on the subject. The book consists of 143 pages and its name is Matraqatul Kaaraamat alaa Mir’atil Imaamat.
After publication of this book, Hadhrat lived for 40 years, but no votary of Shi’ism could refute it. Hafiz Amirullah, despite his differences (with Hadhrat on the issues of Bid’ah) was stunned by the answers given by Hadhrat. Throughout his life he acknowledged that Hadhrat was a unique Allaamah of his time.
5) In a book, Hussaamul Haramain, Molvi Ahmad Raza Khan Barelwi had attributed false beliefs to the Ulama of Deoband and on the basis of this falsehood he branded the Ulama of Deoband as kaafir. He managed to secure the signatures of the Ulama of the Haramain in support of his false pronouncement.
In consequence, the Ulama of Madinah sent a questionnaire of 27 questions to Hadhrat Saharanpْri. In these questions, they sought to ascertain the Aqaaid (Beliefs) of the Ulama of Deoband. Hadhrat furnished answers corroborated by detailed proofs. This book is known as; Al-Muhannad alal Mufannad. However, its popular name is Tasdiqaat li Daf-it Talbeesaat. It was written in 1325 and consists of 72 pages.
6) Tansheetul Athaan fi Tahqiqi Mahallil Athaan is a booklet of 32 pages, written in substantiation of the second Athaan of Jumuah being recited inside the Musjid. The issue is proved by means of Qur’aanic and Hadith proofs, by the Ta-aamul (Practise) of the Salf and by Ijmaa.
7) Itmaamun Ni’am was written in 1313 on the instruction of Hadhrat Imdadullah. It is a translation of the Arabic Kitaab, Tabwibul Hikam which deals with the subtleties of Tasawwuf and Ma’rifat.
8) Bazlul Majhood fi Hal-li Abi Dawood is a unique Sharah (Commentary) of Abu Dawood Shareef. This highly authoritative commentary was the product of Hadhrat’s natural affinity for Hadith and Fiqh. The fruit of his expertise and depth in these two subjects could only be an incomparable and highly authoritative work on which the Ulama of Hadith can repose their confidence while viewing it with pride.
The inspiration to embark on this work had repeatedly occurred to Hadhrat, but due to various circumstances, the most important being his preoccupation with his teaching profession, commencement was delayed. Overwhelming enthusiasm finally compelled Hadhrat to begin this task. On 2nd Rabiul Awwal 1335 all those books needed for this undertaking, were acquired from the library of Mazaaharal Uloom. On the 3rd or 4th Rabiul Awwal 1335 the work of writing this kitaab was commenced in that room of Daarul Talabah which today is the Madrasah’s treasury.
Shaking palsy had already begun in Hadhrat’s hand. The duty of writing, therefore, devolved on this humble one (i.e. Shaikh Zakariyyah). Although there was an occasional change of scribes, the Eternal Scribe (Allah Ta’ala) had chosen this fortune for me. The writing ultimately devolved entirely on me.
On 30th Thil Qa’dh 1335, after 9¼ months, one chapter of Abu Dawood Shareef was completed. At the time of commencing this commentary, Hadhrat never imagined that it would be accomplished. In fact, the intention initially was to complete only one Para (chapter). After having accomplished the first chapter, work started on Kitaabut Tahaarat and then on Kitaabus Salaat. With the ending of Kitaabus Salaat, the urge to accomplish the first volume developed.
The work was in progress until 1344 when Hadhrat departed for Hijaaz. In his enthusiasm to complete the task, he took me along. In Madinah we were fully occupied in this work. On the 21st Sha’baan 1345 after 10 years, 5 months and 10 days the Sharah (Annotation) was finally accomplished. In happiness Hadhrat had invited the Ulama of Madinah. This Kitaab consists of 2063 large pages.