Babri Masjid case lawyer Zafaryab Jilani (73) passed away in Lucknow after a prolonged illness. The death of Muslim Personal Law Board President Maulana Syed Rabi Hosni, is the second major tragedy of the Nation of Islam. He has closed his eyes at a time when the nation of Islam, suffering from various problems, is in dire need of sincere leaders like him. He was apparently an expert lawyer and lawgiver, but his finger was always on the pulse of the nation. It is difficult to find an example of the courage and steadfastness with which he fought for the Babri Masjid Kamqadama. This is the reason that after losing the case, he was broken inside, but did not let anyone show his grief. Patience and tolerance were part of his temperament. He used to respond to every provocative matter with gentleness and wisdom. He actively participated in three major movements of Muslims in independent India and endured the arrows of the opponents, but he never deviated from his principle and stand. Be it the minority role of Aligarh Muslim University or the protection of Muslim personal law, or the movement to recover the Babri Masjid. He was an integral part of these movements. His understanding of the case was also the most different. He remembered the Babri Masjid case covering millions of pages by word of mouth and when he expressed his views on its various aspects, he was able to see it.
Two years ago in May 2021, while coming down from the steps of Islamia Inter College, he suffered a severe brain injury and suffered a brain haemorrhage. During this time, the corona epidemic also took hold of him. After the brain operation at Medanta Hospital, he was apparently healthy, but his memory was not working. In recent days, his condition suddenly worsened, and he was admitted to Nishat Hospital in Lucknow, where he breathed his last on the afternoon of May 17, 2023.
The greatest quality of Zafaryab Jilani was that he made a place for himself in every national organization with his hard work and sincerity. He was also an official. He was the head of most of the educational and social institutions of Lucknow. He was also a confidant of Mulayam Singh and Akhilesh Yadav. He was made the Deputy Advocate General of the state during the Samajwadi regime. He also had close ties with former Prime Minister VP Singh and Chandrasekhar.
Zafaryab Jilani was born in 1950 in the famous town of Malihabad in Lucknow. He did his LLM from Aligarh Muslim University. During his studentship, he participated in the movement to restore the minority status of Aligarh Muslim University in the 70s. Here, his active colleagues included Prof. AkhtarulWasi, Javed Habib, Basir Ahmad Khan, Azam Khan, and ZK Faizan etc. Later, along with his longtime friend Javed Habib, he founded the Muslim Youth Convention in 1982 and became its founding president. He also participated in the movement to protect Muslim personal law in the Shah Bano case. He also started the Muslim reservation movement with the late Salim Pirzada, but his real fame is as a lawyer and convener of the Action Committee in the Babri Masjid case. happened
Zafaryab Jilani was the founding convener of the Action Committee that was formed in Lucknow after the Babri Masjid lock was opened in 1986. Most of my meetings with him took place during various programs of this movement. His role was key in the central action committee meetings held in Delhi.
On one occasion, Syed Shahabuddin told me, “Remember, Zafaryab Jilani will be identified as an important Muslim leader one day.” This prediction of Syed Shahabuddin proved correct. He was very impressed with Fahmi. Zafaryab Jilani greatest quality was that his homework was very strong. He also kept records and files very carefully. Each paper was preserved in his memory. With his death, the nation lost a sincere leader. His services will always be remembered.