Ishtiaq Hussain Qureshi

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Ishtiaq Hussain Qureshi (20 November 1903 – 22 January 1981), popularly known as I.H. Qureshi, was a Pakistani historian, scholar, writer, and a professor of political history, first at the University of the Punjab and then at the Karachi University. Apart from his work as an academic historian he was also a well-known playwright.


  • The status and the fucntion of the Ulema in the Muslim community have seldom been properly understood by non-Muslims scholars. Superficial observers have thought that the Ulema correspond to priests withoit a church; hence, they consider the presence of priesthood in Islam inevitable. The Ulema are venerated for their learning and piety, hence also they are taken to be priests.
    • Ulema in Politics, Chapter I. The Position of the Ulema in the Muslim Society, p. 1
  • The Quran has always held the central position in Islamic thinking. Indeed it holds a position even higher that that of the Prophet, because the Prophet was as much bound by its injunctions as any believer.
    • Ulema in Politics, p. 5
  • Islam does not distinguish between the religious and profane. There being no ecclesia, its counterpart the saeculum becomes redundant. In a sense Islam is a secular religion, because it has no church.
    • Ulema in Politics, Chapter I. The Position of the Ulema in the Muslim Society, p. 3

Quotes about Ishtiaq Hussain Qureshi[edit]

  • His approach is strongly communalistic... He is proud of the political achievements of Muslims in medieval India and believes that they more than satisfied modern ideas of tolerance, benevolence and efficiency... (He) treats the Delhi Sultanate as a welfare state, the Muslim community in medeival India as a nation, and the Sultans of Delhi as Muslims both in a religious and political sense.
    • Peter Hardy, in Historians of India, quoted in Lal, K. S. (2001). Historical essays. New Delhi: Radha.(96-97)
  • Interestingly enough an academic conflict is going on between those who do not wish to tamper with facts (Mohammad Habib, S.S.A. Rizvi) and those who are determined to give a benign face to Islam (I.H. Qureshi, Mohammad Mujeeb, Ashgahar Ali Engineer).
    • Lal, K. S. (2002). Return to roots: Emancipation of Indian Muslims. New Delhi: Radha.(9)

External links[edit]

  • I. H. Qureshi: Ulema in Politics, Renaissance Publishing House, Delhi, 1985
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