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Role of Faraizi Movement and Wahabi Movement

Last Updated : 13 Sep, 2022
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The earliest signs of the Muslim awakening emerged at the beginning of the 19th century, led by Shariat Ullah of Bengal. This was happening as a result of the influence of western ideologies, Christian missionaries, and modern education. So they committed themselves to improving Islam and fostering Islamic studies.

Faraizi Movement:

Haji Shariatullah started the Faraizi Movement, a religious reform movement, in the nineteenth century. The word “Faraizi” derives from the Arabic word “farz,” which refers to obligations imposed by Allah. Therefore, the Faraizi are those who seek to enforce compulsory religious duties. Haji Shariat Ullah, the movement’s leader, however, used the phrase in a wider sense to refer to all religious duties mandated by both the Quran and the Prophet’s Sunnah. Haji Shariat Ullah passed away in 1837, leaving his capable and politically astute son Muhammad Mushin also known as Dudu Miyan (1819-60) in charge of leading the uprising.

Role of The Faraizi Movement in Muslim Reform Movements:

  • The Faraizi movement called for social justice and expressed worry over the British influence on Muslims.
  • It aimed to purify Islam by eradicating all non-Islamic customs and beliefs and designating the Koran as their only source of spiritual guidance.
  • According to Haji Shariat Ullah, the Muslims’ ability to practice their religion was harmed by British control in Bengal.
  • He declared that numerous transgressions were polluting Islam and offered remedial suggestions.
  • He criticized the corruptions and superstitions in Islam and strongly condemns the Muslim caste system.
  • The significance of this movement resided in its social foundations, as the rural Muslims of east Bengal banded together under this religious group and rose up in revolt against landowners, indigo planters, and the Britishers.
  • After the death of Shariat Ullah in 1837, Dudu Miyan turned this movement from a socio-religious to a socio-economic-political movement.
  • Dudu Miyan organized the rural population around an egalitarian ideology.
  • He said that because Allah owned the property, the zamindar had no right to collect taxes.
  • He instructed his people to avoid paying taxes to the zamindar, cultivating indigo for the planters, and aiding the British.
  • A few campaigns were also started to promote modern education and end social vices such as polygamy and purdah.
  • This movement sparked a new awareness among the peasants and paved the way for the Muslim reform movement.

Wahabi Movement:

The Wahabi Movement was started in the first decade of the 19th century by Sayyid Ahmad of Rai Bareilly. The Wahabi reform movement’s foundation was strengthened by the teachings of Abdul Wahhab of Arabia (1703-87) and Delhi saint Shah Waliullah. The early Wahabis placed a strong emphasis on two major reformation facets. The first was to unite Islamic ideas and the second to support the conscience of the individual in upholding religious ethos.

Role of The Wahabi Movement in Muslim Reform Movements:

  • The Wahabi movement was a revivalist movement that sought to purify Islam by eradicating all un-Islamic practices that had permeated Muslim culture through the centuries.
  • The Wahhabi movement opposed all Islamic schools of thought that it believed had erroneously interpreted the Quran.
  • Sayyid Ahmad was the first Indian Muslim leader of the 18th century to unite Muslims around the movement’s dual ideals: the need for harmony among the four schools of Muslim jurisprudence that had split Indian Muslims; and the need for the spread of Islam across the world 
  • The Wahabi movement’s political outlook gave rise to the desire for a homeland for Muslims. 
  • Wahabis did not limit themselves to just religious reforms. They wanted to usurp British rule with the rule of sincere believers.
  • Wahabi ideology had a significant impact on Muslim uprisings in India and impacted the uprising of 1857. 
  • Muslims in India developed an anti-British feeling as a result of the Wahabi movement. The leader of the revolt in Delhi, General Bakht Khan, was a Wahabi
  • Dar-Ul-Islam, or the habitation of Islam, was the goal of the Wahabi movement and Muslim isolationism was left as a legacy.
  • This movement left the Indian Muslims with a history of isolationist and separatist impulses.


In the nineteenth century, Indo-Islamic society saw a fiery push for socio-religious changes with significant political implications. Following the uprising in 1857, the British were forced to conduct major military operations against the supporters of these movements, as they turned into an armed conflict. These movements had been totally suppressed by 1870. Regardless of the overall result of these reform movements, a new society emerged in India.

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