HomeEnglishA Poor Philanthropist: Malik Muneer Peshawari

A Poor Philanthropist: Malik Muneer Peshawari

It is 4 o’clock in the morning in Qadian, Sikh pilgrims are marching on foot towards Dera Baba Nanak to pay their obeisance to the Holy Chola Sahib . The residents in nearby houses , mostly Muslims, are all asleep. At one corner of the street, a middle-aged man who could barely limp comes out from his house carrying a few glasses of water in one hand and a water-cooler in the other for the pilgrims . A few moments later he brings some fritters (pakoras) in his hands and presents them to them. Pilgrims of all ages take them with folded hands with devotion and respect. This man also engages in this service in a calm and content manner. When the Pakoras are finished, he fetches another water cooler and goes back to his room. His wife who had been watching his routine for many years says bitterly to him ; “you have been doing philathrophy for many years now but you are old now and you can’t even walk properly , so why are you taking so much trouble?’’. In response to this, the person says, “we don’t know what kind of good deeds will please God; maybe serving a glass of water can pave the path for my forgiveness and guide me to heaven”.
This great man was my maternal uncle Malik Munir Ahmad Peshawari. He was very popular in Qadian and its surrounding areas. He was known as Peshawarii. It was for the common reason that my maternal grandfather was from Peshawar and had a good post in the army. One of his brothers was a pilot and other was captain. But my grandfather (Nana) left everything and came to Qadian at the time of the partition of the country in 1947 to protect Qadian to serve his community, responding to call of second caliph of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, and then stayed here until his demise . None of his siblings came to Qadian .
My Mamu was born in poverty and remained in poverty until his death. Throughout his life , he continued to serve selflessly beyond his strength and means. His services are recalled by the poor people who used to come to him in difficult times, although he himself continued to eat bread with fried chilli all his life, but he did not let a hungry person go empty-handed from his door. Mamu often used to say: “I saw my father being a victim of poverty and saw him skipping meals deliberately . Then I saw my mother and sisters die in the same way, so the pain of poverty is known to me by birth. So I can imagine and relate myself to every other poor human being and their difficulties.”
In Today’s world, only rich persons with expensive clothes are respected and aee counted superior among the others. That’s why people with ragged and torn clothes are neither respected nor welcomed in the society. The poor man is not loved by the world even though he is close to God. My uncle was definitely close to God because he did not worship any human being no matter how big a person in the society. He always remained helpful to people in need. Another special thing about him was that despite poverty, disease and hunger he lived his life with patience and gratitude without uttering a word of ungratefulness. There is a God Who sees the hearts and intentions of man and not his appearance and pretences. God has a view to the abyss of man’s heart. But the people who know his philanthropic works and his helping nature can say with certainty that he was a gold hearted and honest person. His service to humanity is unforgettable, whether it is to give water or procure food for hungry, or to give clothes to someone in need, all these virtues were the basic qualities of my Mamu. If only every person in this world harboured a true passion to serve humanity like my uncle , this world would be a better place today. God is witness of my Mamu’s humanitarian services and those close to him who were with him in his suffering are also aware of his services and remember him and pray for him. Those whom he helped will always pay tribute to him . Today , I hope, my Mamu is in God’s heaven on a higher rank among other great Nasiruddin Hamid.

munira salam
munira salam
Editor-in-chief at Salam News Punjab
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