Dr Kalim Siddiqui was a leading intellectual of the 20th century. He was also a political activist who founded the Muslim Institute in London as well as established the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain of which he was the leader. He died 20 years ago. The ICIT and Crescent International are organizing a Memorial conference ot pay tribute to this great son of Islam.
Colleagues and friends of the late Dr Kalim Siddiqui participated in a memorial conference on April 23 to pay tribute to his remarkable academic as well as social and political work. It was Dr Kalim's 20th anniversary since his untimely death in South Africa in April 1996. Rich tributes were paid to his great work that has inspired a generation of scholars and activists.
The Muslim Institute emerged from talks in 1972-73 among a group of young Muslims in London led by the late Dr Kalim Siddiqui. Its foundation proper can be dated to the publication of the Draft Prospectus of the Muslim Institute, its foundation document, in 1974.
The Muslim Parliament of Great Britain, inaugurated in 1992, emerged from a study into the Muslim situation in Britain by the Muslim Institute, London, under the leadership of Dr Kalim Siddiqui, during the Rushdie affair in 1989-90. Unfortunately it was to decline rapidly following his death in 1996, and was defunct to all intents and purposes within a few years.
The end of the year is often a time for looking back and reflecting on events past. This is particularly the case in Western countries, where the new year coincides with the annual Christmas break, the main holiday period in most Western countries, although it is no longer a particularly Christian or spiritual occasion. This year, the Islamic new year follows very soon after the new year on the Gregorian calendar; in fact, 2008 will be a rare Gregorian year because it has two Islamic new years, as the year 1430AH will begin at the end of next December.1
Heralded as Europe’s first collective response to Islamophobia, the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain’s European conference, aptly entitled ‘Islamophobia - the oldest hatred’, brought together an impressive line up of speakers, activists and scholars from across Europe.
This biography of Dr Kalim Siddiqui is divided into five sections. It is based on the commemorative booklet published by the Muslim Institute and the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain on the occasion of their ‘Kalim Siddiqui Memorial Conference’ in London in November 1996. It has been edited and updated by Iqbal Siddiqui, who also wrote the original booklet.
The work of the Muslim Institute after its formal establishment in 1973, and particularly following the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1978-79, made Dr Kalim Siddiqui a senior and respected figure in the global Islamic movement. However, in Britain he remained relatively little known outside the circles of Islamic activists.
The inauguration of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain on January 4, 1992, was greeted by a frenzied attack from the British media and establishment. For some days, Dr Kalim Siddiqui was the most hated man in Britain, attacked by Conservative government ministers and opposition leaders alike, and vilified in the press.
Dr Kalim Siddiqui referred to the Muslim Parliament as both 'a minority political system for Muslims in Britain' and a 'non-territorial Islamic State.' Many people regarded these terms as meaning the same thing, and being virtually interchangeable. Dr Siddiqui, however, understood and meant them quite differently, and the distinction is vital to appreciating his vision of the Muslim Parliament.
Well known for his unreserved support for the Islamic Revolution of Iran and its chief exponent to the outside world, Dr. Kalim Siddiqui, the late founder-leader of The Muslim Parliament in Britain, believed that the Muslim world needed a series of revolutions.
Conference Papers to be updated.
Conference Papers to be updated.
[Leader’s Address at the Inaugural Session of the Muslim Parliament of Great Britain, Kensington Town Hall, London, 4 January, 1992.]
[Paper presented at the Muslim Institute conference on ‘The Future of Muslims in Britain’, London, 14 July, 1990.]
This manifesto is the outcome of a process of consultation, writing and revision over several months. It is now being offered for wider debate in the Muslim community. We hope that a number of regional consultation conferences will be held all over the country in the next few months. To set that process of consultation in motion, the Muslim Institute has arranged a one-day conference on “The Future of Muslims in Britain”.