Declaration of Eid in Allahabad

Syed Maqbool Hasan was the Shahr Qazi of Allahabad ( my home town ) for over half a century.


Although he was also the Imam ( head priest) of Jama Masjid in Allahabad, he never took any money from the funds of Jama Masjid, and earned his livelihood as an ordinary stamp vendor in Allahabad High Court.

When I was a lawyer there ( 1970-1991) I used to see him sitting at the bottom of the stairs below the Bar Association Library, selling stamps. He wore a simple kurta pyjama, and on looking at him one could never make out that he was the Shahr Qazi.


Until he agreed, Eid could not be declared in Allahabad. Since for declaring Eid two respectable Muslims must state that they have sighted the moon, he would rigorously cross examine the persons claiming that they had seen the moon, and he also strictly applied the parameters required before declaring Eid. His integrity was of such a high order that everyone in Allahabad accepted his verdict.


Because of old age ( if alive he must be now in his 90s ) he retired, but before that he was coming to the High Court on a bicycle every working day from his home several miles away.


In 1986 communal riots broke out in Allahabad, but he refused to take any police security, although it was offered to him.

He lived a simple life, and put all the money he earned in educating his children. Today one of his sons is in U.S.A. and the other children are also well settled, some in business, and others in other vocations.

If he is alive, I request people in Allahabad to convey my Eid greetings to him.



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