The Martyrdom of Imam Hussain (عليه السلام)


 There are differences of opinion among people about the role of ImamHussain (علیھ السلا م) in the battle of Karbala.  Salafis, Deobandis and like minded groups blame Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) and treat him as a mutineer who revolted against Yazid Ibn Muawiya, who, they claim, was a legitimate Caliph.  They write Radiallahu unhu with Yazid’s name and mislead people by misquoting and misinterpreting historical events to exonerate Yazid from the crime of massacring Imam Hussain(علیھ السلا م) and his associates in Karbala.  They claim the Governor of Kufa, Ibn Ziyad was responsible for the killing against Yazid’s wish.  They forget the fact that Ibn Ziyad, the first Cousin of Yazid,  was specially sent to Kufa as new Governor with a special task to kill Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) and his associates and he did that in all its brutality and savage physical violence, not seen in human history. If the Governor killed Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) against Yazid’s orders, then he should have been removed from the  Governorship and punished.  But this did not happen.  The Governor was not only retained, he was also applauded by Yazid for the extra-ordinary feat.  These are undeniable historical facts.

Shias depict a pitiable and pathetic scenario of the battle of Karbala and describe the events in such a way that the bravery of Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) and his 72 family members and associates gets eclipsed.  The real purpose of the martyrdom of Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) also gets eclipsed in view of the public display of lamenting and self infliction by Shias.  On 10th Muharram every year Shias gather in streets and public places as a ritual and display hysterical lamenting and make a mockery of the sacrifices of Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م).  

For Ahle Sunnah wal Jama’a, Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) is one of the most revered dignitaries of Islam.  He is an icon and a role model who has kept  Sahih Islam alive in the world.  If he had publicly not condemned Yazid and assured the enemies of Islam that he is not a threat to them, they would have easily made him Governor of a Province.  But, being a prominent member of Ahle Bait and leader of Muslims, he had a responsibility on his shoulders to keep the purity of Islam intact, away from corruption and manipulative politics. And he could have done so only by giving the ultimate sacrifice; his own life, and the lives of all those who were near and dear to him.  Every nation has a hero who is being remembered and revered by them. Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) is our Hero, our leader and our spiritual master whom we revere in our heart and who will be remembered for his Islamic ideals till the day of Qiyamah.

It  is in Hadith –  The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) declared “these two sons of mine (Hadhrat Hassan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ  and Hadhrat Hussain – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) are the leaders of the youth in Paradise.  (Tirmidhi, Vol 5, page 426).  

The Article contains historical facts from authentic History books, Islamic literature, Quranic verses and Ahadith.  Ahle Sunnah scholars’ opinions have been cited all through the article.  We have avoided Salafis and Shia sources all together, in view of their extreme views. As usual, we have refrained from expressing our personal opinions throughout the article.

We hope our readers will greatly benefit from it.  If you think some information related to a particular issue has been left, please write to us, giving authentic Ahle Sunnah references. We will try to accommodate it as far as possible.

There are 13 articles in this series that cover misunderstandings and differences of opinions about the tribulations that hit the Islamic nation during 48 years immediately after the death of Prophet Mohammad(صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  For better understanding of these issues, it is important that you read these articles in the same sequence, from part 1 to 13.




Imam Hussain Ibn Ali (علیھ السلا م) was born in Madina on 3rd Shaban, 4 H (626 AD). After his birth he was taken to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), who was delighted to see the new born.  The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) recited the Azaan and Iqamah in Imam Hussain’s (علیھ السلا م)right and left ears respectively. 

Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) was in Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) company for 6 years (626-32).

At the time of Martyrdom of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) in 661, he was 35 years old.


(1) It is in Hadith – Narrated Abu Huraira (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ):Once, when Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was of tender years, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), holding his forearmsout, said, O’ Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)! Climb up! Climb up!’ He started to climb till his feet were on the  chest of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), and both were face to face. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) kissed him with great fondness and said, O’Allah! I love him. You too love him! (Bukhari).

(2) It is in Hadith – Narrated Anas Ibn Malik (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  When Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) was asked which member of his family was dearest to him, he replied. “Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)”. He used to say to Fatimah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا), “Call my two sons to me”, and then would sniff and cuddle them.  (Tirmidhi # 6158).

(3) It is in Hadith – Narrated by Sa`d Ibn Abi Waqqas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) :  When Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) revealed the verse:فَمَنْ حَاجَّكَ فِيهِ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَكَ مِنَ الْعِلْمِ فَقُلْ تَعَالَوْا نَدْعُ أَبْنَاءَنَا وَأَبْنَاءَكُمْ وَنِسَاءَنَا وَنِسَاءَكُمْ وَأَنفُسَنَا وَأَنفُسَكُمْ ثُمَّ نَبْتَهِلْ فَنَجْعَل لَّعْنَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَى الْكَاذِبِينَ  [Come! We will summon our sons and your sons, and our women and your women, and ourselves and yourselves, then we will pray humbly and invoke the curse of Allah upon those who lie] (Aal-e-Imran – 61), the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) summoned  Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Sayyida Fatima (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا), Imam Hasan(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), and Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), and said: “O Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی)! These are my Family.(Muslim, Ahmad, Tirmidhi, and Hakim)

(4) It is in Hadith – Ummul Momineen Aisha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) reported that Allah’s Apostle ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) went out one morning wearing a striped cloak of the black camel’s hair that there came Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). He wrapped him under it, then came Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)and he wrapped him under it along with the other one. Then came Fatima (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) and he took her under it, then came Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and he also took him under it and then said: Allah only desires to take away any uncleanness from you O’people of the household, and purify you (meticulously) (Muslim, Book 31, Hadith # 5955). 

(5) It is in Hadith – Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) looked at  Hazrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) Sayyida Fatima(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) and Imams Hassan and Hussain  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہم) and said, “I am in war with those who will fight with you, and in peace with those who are peaceful to you.”(Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, al-Hakim, Tabarani, Mishkat, etc.).

Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) was loved and admired by all Sahabah, particularly the Khulafa e Rashideen, Hadhrat Abu Bakr, Hadhrat Umar, Hadhrat Uthman, and Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین).

It is in Hadith – Ya’la Ibn Marra narrated : the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said, ‘I am from Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)and Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) is from me. Allah loves the one who loves Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). (Tirmidhi)

We would like to clarify an issue here. We have used both suffixes; ‘alaihis Salam’ and ‘Radiallu ta’ala un’ with the names of Imam Hussain and other members of Ahle Bait in our articles.   

Some people claim that it is not appropriate to write ‘Alaihis Salam’ with the names of the members of Ahle Bait (like Hadhrat Ali, Sayyida Fatimah, Imams Hassan and Hussain); rather we should write Radiallahu ta’ala unh (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) because ‘alaihis salaam’ is used with the names of the Prophets.

However, when we read the books of Tafaseer, Ahadith and Fiqh of hundreds of Ahle Sunnah scholars for the past 1400 years, we find that they have used ‘alaihis salam’ with Ahle Bait e At haar.  Imam Bukhari in his Sahih has used ‘alaihis salam’ with the names of Hadhrat Ali, Sayyida Fatima and other members of Ahle Bait.  Imam Ahmed used ‘Alaihis Salam’ with the names of Ahle Bait in his “Musnad”. Imam Jalauddin Suyuti, Shaikh Ahmed Sirhindi, Shah Waliullah and hundreds of others have used ‘alaihis salam’ with the names of Ahle Bait.  Also, it is a common practice that when two Muslims meet, one  says “As Salaamu Alaikum’ and this greeting is returned by ‘Wa alaikum as-Salaam’ by the other person.  Also in every Salah we recite ‘At Tahiyat’ in which we say “Assalamu alaina wa ala Ibaadillahis Saliheen”. Therefore, no one should object when we use ‘alaihis salaam’ for Ahle Bait e At haar.



Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) grew up in the Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)house hold, in the company of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and Khulafa e Rashideen.  Thus he became a true reflection of the Islamic faith.  He was pious, polite and extremely patient. His heart was divinely guided, as was the case with other Khulafa e Rashideen.  This is the reason they are known as “rightly guided”.  Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) was very brave.  He stayed at the Gate of Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) during the rioters siege guarding him against the rioters. He participated in all the battles that were fought under Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).   

There is no doubt that the Ahle Bait e At Haar, particularly Hadhrat Ali and Hasanain karimain (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین) have a special status among Sahabah.   It is not only because they are close kin of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), but also they were given the responsibility of keeping the light of Sahih Islam alighted in the world and they did that with utmost sincerity.  They showed us how to be steadfast on Sahih Iman during dark times of oppression and corruption. When others interpreted Quranic verses and Ahadith, they stood the ground and showed us the right path of Islam. Their sacrifices were important for Islam’s continuation as a truthful religion till the day of Qiyamah. This is the reason Hasanian karimain (رضئ الله تعالى عنهما ) are regarded as leaders of Muslims, both in this world and in Paradise.    

It  is in Hadith –  The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) declared “these two sons of mine (Hadhrat Hassan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ  and Hadhrat Hussain – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) are the leaders of the youth in Paradise.  (Tirmidhi, Vol 5, page 426).




Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) established Islam and Islamic State in Arabian Peninsula  during 609-632.

After the death of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in 632, there was some confusion created by an unknown Ansaari Sa’ad bin Ubada about the issue of succession, but it was resolved by Khulafa e Rashideen, particularly Hadhrat Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  Read more.  

Hadhrat Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was chosen as the first Caliph by consensus. His Caliphate lasted for two years, between 632-34, during which, Islamic State was consolidated and expanded. 

After Hadhrat Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ),  Hadhrat Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) took up as Caliph and his reign lasted for 10 years, between 634-44.  Hadhrat Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) continued consolidation of Islamic State as well as its expansion beyond Middle Eastern borders.

After Hadhrat Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) became Caliph.  His reign lasted for 12 years, during 644-56.   The first half of Hadhrat Uthman’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) rule was smooth. However, during the second half, the vested interests created trouble and eventually the Caliph was assassinated in his own home by the rioters. Read more…

After Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)took over as Caliph in 656 in the backdrop of an anarchy in Islamic State.  What were the reasons for this state of affairs? 



An absolute majority of Ahle Sunnah Ulema hold Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) responsible for the chaos in Islamic State and eventual downfall of Rashidun Caliphate.  

(i) Imam al-Barzanji (1640-1703), the Chief Mufti of Madinah (buried in Jannat ul Baqi) wrote in his book “Ishrat al-Sa’a” as follows: 

It was a false pretext of Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) to justify his fight with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) under the guise of revenge for the murder of Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) because when he completely attained the power and became ruler of the whole State, he never opened the case of the murder of Hadhrat Uthman ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and did not arrest the murderers though he claimed earlier that the killers were still around. This  proves that all his fight was for worldly rule under the deceit of revenge for the murder.”


(ii) Al-Hassan al-Basri wrote – لقد تصنّع معاويه للخلافة في ولاية عمر بن خطاب  (Muawiya had been preparing himself for Caliphate since Hadhrat Umar’s – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ tenure.)(Mukhtasar Tarikh Damishq, Vol 25, Page 24.  It is also recorded in ‘Tathbit Dala’il al-Nubuwwa, Page 593)


(iii) Imam al-Manawi wrote:


 أجمع فقهاء الحجاز والعراق من فريقي الحديث والرأي ، منهم مالك والشافعي وأبو حنيفة والأوزاعي والجمهور الأعظم من المتكلمين والمسلمين ، أن علياً مصيب في قتاله لأهل صفين كما هو مصيب في أهل الجمل ، وأن الذين قاتلوه بغاة ظالمون له  


“There is Ijma of Fuqaha (Jurists) of Hijaz (Makka and Madina) and Iraq (Kufa and Basra), amongst them Imam Malik, Imam Shafi’i, Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Awzai and majority of theologians and Muslims that,  Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was on Haq in his fight against the people of Siffeen and those who fought him were Oppressive Mutineers (Zaalim Baghis).”


[Imam al-Manawi (1545 – 1621), wrote in his book  Fayd al – Qadeer with reference to Imam Abdul Qahir al-Jurjani’s(1007-1078) Aqeeda.]   Read more…


(iv) The following Sahabah, Imams and Ulema statedMuawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was a rebel. 

Abdullah bin Umar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), Imam Shafi’i, Imam Nasai, Imam Mohammed Ibn Ismail al-Sana’ani, Imam Abdulrauf al-Manawi, Imam Mohammed Shaybani, Mulla Ali Qari, Imam Abu Bakr al-Jassas, Imam Shawkani, Imam al-Jurjani, and others.  Read more…

(v) Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) prophesied the Group under Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) will be rebellious aggressors who will fight against Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ).  

It is in Hadith – Ibn ‘Abbas ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said to me and to his son Ali, “Go to Abu Sa’id ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and listen to what he narrates.” So we went and found him in a garden looking after it.  He picked up his Rida’, wore it and sat down and started narrating till the topic of the construction of the mosque reached. He said, “We were carrying one adobe at a time while ‘Ammar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was carrying two. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) saw him and started removing the dust from his body and said, “May Allah be Merciful to ‘Ammar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ). He will be killed by a rebellious, aggressive group. He will be inviting them to Paradise and they will invite him to Hell-fire.” ‘Ammar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said, “I seek refuge with Allah from affliction.” (Bukhari)


(vi) Imam Abu Bakr al-Razi al-Jassas (d 992) wrote in his book “Ahkaam al-Quran as follows: 

تقتلك الفئة الباغية وهذا خبر مقبول من طريق التواتر حتى إن معاوية لم يقدر على جحده لما قال له عبد الله بن عمر ، فقال: إنما قتله من جاء به فطرحه بين أسنتنا

(Meaning – “Ammar  ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) you will be killed by the rebellious group” This Hadith is a continuous Narration  (Hadith e Mutawatir) so much so that even Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) could not deny it when Abdullah Ibn Umar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) mentioned it to him.Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) replied : He (Ammar  رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was killed by those who brought him to our swords.”).


(vii) Imam Ahmad recorded the following Hadith twice in his Musnad with a sound chain.  
قال عمرو : سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول : تقتله الفئة الباغية ، فقال له معاوية : دحضت في بولك أي زللت و زلقت – أو نحن قتلناه ، إنما قتله علي و أصحابه جاءوا به حتى ألقوه بين رماحنا  ( “Amru said that I heard the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) saying Ammar Yasir ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) will be killed by the rebellious group”. Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) replied: ‘Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and his companions killed him because they brought him to ourspears!)

When this news reached Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), he said that on this logic,  then Hadhrat Amir Hamza ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was killed by the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)because he took him to the kuffar in the battle of Uhud!



(viii) Ibn Abi Khaythama recorded the following  Hadith:


It is in Hadith – حَدَّثَنَا أبي ، قال : حَدَّثَنا جَرِير ، عَنِ الأَعْمَش ، عن مُنْذِرٍالثَّوْرِيّ ، عن سَعْد بن حُذَيْفَة ، قال : قال عَمَّار : والله ما أَسْلَموا ولَكِنَّهُم اسْتَسْلَمُواوأسرُّوا الْكُفْر حَتَّى وجدوا عليه أَعْوَانًا فأَظْهَروه  [ Ammar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) (on the eve of the Battle of Siffin) said: “By Allah, they did not convert to Islam (fully), but they surrendered (reluctantly at the fall of Makka) and veiled their (partial) disbelief  until they found support so they unveiled it” ](Tarikh Ibn Abi Khaythama, Vol 2, Page 991).   


(ix) Ibn Abi Shaiba recorded the following Hadith :


It is in Hadith – Abdur Rahman Ibn Mughfal said ; “I prayed with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) dawn prayer, then Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) performed Qunoot and said : O’Allah, punish Muawiya and his followers …. (Part of the Hadith) (Ibn Abi Shaiba, Vol 2, P 108, # 7050;  Kanzul Ummal, Vol 8, P 134, # 219809)


(x) It is recorded in Muslim. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: “the one who disputes with the rightly guided Caliph and imposes his authority by force over the  authority of a (rightly guided Caliph)  should be beheaded (killed)”.


It is in Hadith – The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said : “He who swears allegiance to a Caliph should give him the pledge of his hand and the sincerity of his heart ( submit to him both outwardly as well as inwardly). He should obey him to the best of his capacity. If another man comes forward (as a claimant to Caliphate), disputing his authority, they (the Muslims) should behead the latter”.(part of the Hadith). (Muslim, Book 20, Hadith #  4546)


(xi) Imam Ahmad stated, Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was the enemy of Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), and some people praise him and set a trap for themselves for him.


 Abdullah, son of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal stated : “I asked my father about  Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Muawiyah(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ). He (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal) answered: “Know that Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) had a lot of enemies who tried hard to find a fault in him, but they found it not. As such, they joined a man (Muawiya) who verily fought him, battled him and they praised him(Muawiya) extravagantly setting a trap for themselves for him.  

[Reference – (i) History of Caliphs by Jalaluddin Suyuti page 202, (ii) Al-Sawa’iq al-Muhriqah, by Ibn Hajar, Ch. 9, section 4, p 197, (iii) Al-Toyuriyyat, by al-Salafi, from Abdullah Ibn Ahmad Hanbal.

(xii) An absolute majority of the Ahle Sunnah Ulema consider there is no room to praise and glorify Muawiya(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) because there is not even one single authentic Hadith in his praise.  Read more


(xiii) Ibn Kathir wrote in his famous book al-Bidaya wan Nihaya as follows:   

Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was not appointed with the consensus of Muslims at large as was the case with his predecessors.  Despite this Muawiya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ )wanted to be the Khalīfa and he fought for this position and became ruler by force.  When he imposed his Caliphate on people, they had no choice but to give him bay’a.  If people did not give him bay’a, they would not only lose their positions/jobs but also would have lost their lives.  It would have been a catastrophe for them.  People would rather give bay’a than confront these consequences. That is why Imam Hassan ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) stepped down and other Sahaba joined him so as to avoid the risk of civil War amongst Muslims. Muawiyya ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was well aware of this strategy.  He himself confessed, “I was absolutely aware of nation’s discontent with my caliphate; however, I secured it by sword” (Al-Bidaya wan-Nihaya, Vol 8, Page 132).

(xiv) Muawiya’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) Peace Treaty with Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)

After Hadhrat Ali’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) assassination, Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was nominated as Caliph by the people. But Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) continued his military campaign and occupied most of the Islamic State. Many of the Military Generals in Hadhrat Hassan’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) army defected to Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).Historians claim that the defections were engineered by Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). 

Eventually Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) had to abdicate the Caliphate by entering into a peace treaty with Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  The primary condition of the peace treaty was,  Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) will abide by Quran and Sunnah in ruling the Islamic State. 

Following conditions were laid down for Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)  in the Peace Treaty, to which he agreed and signed the Treaty. 

(a) Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) will follow the Qur’an and the Sunnah in ruling the Islamic nation, (b) He will allow a Parliament (shura) to take a decision as regards to Caliphate after his death, (c) He will refrain from public cursing and insult of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), and (e)He will provide security to Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and his companions. 

Islamic History is witness that none of these conditions were fulfilled. A brief account of Muawiya ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) rule is provided blow.

(a) Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was brutally murdered in 50 H (670) by a deadly poison which tore his liver into pieces.  It is reported that when he vomited, the pieces of liver came out of his throat.  According to ‘Tarikh al-Khulafa’ by Imam Jalaluddin Suyuti, he was poisoned by Ja’da bint al-Ash’ath Ibn Qais, his wife, who was lured for this purpose.  Ahle Sunnah scholars have mentioned that the killing of Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was a Government sponsored conspiracy (Tadhkara al-Khawass, Ibn al-Jawzi, p 191-94;  Ibn Abd al-Barr in his ‘Seerah’; al-Shudhi;  Amir al-Sha’bi; Abu Nu’aym, etc.). 

(b) Cursing of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was officially sponsored and it continued for decades. (Bukhari, Muslim, Ahmed, Ibn Maja, Qurtubi, Ibn Kathir, Kanzul Ummal, Jalaluddin Suyuti, Ibn Taymiya, and others)  Read more..  

(c) Ahle Sunnah Scholars have stated that Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) ruled like a Byzantine/Kisra King.  He used to boost himself as an Arab King (Abu Dawood, Ahmed, Majma al Zawaid, Ibn Asakir, Shah Abdulaziz Muhaddis Delhi, Ibn Hajr Asqalani, Ibn Kathir and others).

(d) Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) used Haram items in his daily usage and food (Ahmed Ibn Hanbal, Abu Dawood, Ibn Asakir, Ad-Dhahabi, Ibn Hajr Asqalani, Asad al-Ghaba, Muajma’a al-Zawaid, Abdulhaq Muhaddith Dahalwi, etc.).

(e) Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) revived many Pagan practices in the Islamic State which were prohibited by Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  He also changed several Islamic rules. (Suyuti, Ahmad, ad-Dahabi, Hakim, Abi Shaibah, Ibn Kathir, Ibn Hajr Asqalani, Salafi scholar Hasan Farhan al-Maliki, etc.)

(f) Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) blurred the concept of legitimacy of marriage in Islam. Children born under the wedlock and outside the wedlock were treated on par with each other.  The Head of State, by a decree made it a law and became himself the first example. The law of Pagans was reintroduced in the Islamic State. This law opened the floodgates of adultery which were closed by Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  Read more … 

(g) Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) appointed his son Yazid as heir apparent and ruler of Islamic nation.  

(e) Ibn Katheer, in his book Al-Bidayah wan-Nihaya,stated that Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) threatened Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to pledge allegiance on the hands of his  son Yazid ( لعنة الله عليه ).

Muawiyah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) called on the people including those within the outlying territories to pledge allegiance to his son, Yazeed ( لعنة الله عليه  ) to be his heir to the Caliphate after him. Marwan also wanted Yazid (لعنة الله عليه) to be the Caliph so that he could run things behind the scenes. Almost all the subjects offered their allegiance, with the exception of (i) Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr, (ii) Abdullah bin Umar, (iii) Hadhrat Hussain bin Ali, (iv) Abdullah bin Zubair and (v) Abdullah bin Abbas (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین). Because of this Muawiyah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) came to Madina and summoned each one of the five and threatened them”

The threat was real as history is a witness that Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) and his 72 close associates, many of whom his near and dear, were brutally massacred in Karbala, Iraq by Muawaiya’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) son, Yazeed bin Muawiya ( لعنة الله عليه ) in 680 and their bodies were mutilated by horses. Allahu Akbar. Read more  (1),   (2).




Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) announced nomination of Yazid to the throne within a few years after occupying the Islamic State.  Yazid was about 16 years old then.  From then onwards, both father and the son made sure that the Governors of all provinces accept Yazid as the crown prince and heir apparent of the Islamic State. The oath to Yazid’s succession was secured from all parts of the State with the exception 5 dignitaries in Madina;  (i) Abdur Rahman Ibn Abu Bakr, (ii) Abdullah bin Umar, (iii) Hussain bin Ali, (iv) Abdullah bin Zubair and (v)Abdullah bin Abbas (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین) who opposed and showed their displeasure on his nomination.   

Marwan ibn al-Hakam, Governor of Madina Province, formally announced  Muawiya’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) decision of nominating his son as heir apparent and successor in front of a large gathering in Madina. He gave a lengthy speech and tried to legitimize the nomination by saying that it is the way, custom and sunnah of Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  From the audience, Abdur Rahman Ibn Abi Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) objected on this statement saying it was actually the customs of the Byzantines and the Persians, not the custom of Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). Neither Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) nor Umar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)  had appointed his own progeny as his successor.  Marwan got furious on these remarks and ordered his guards to arrest Abdur Rahman Ibn Abi Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  Before the Guards could catch hold of Abdur Rahman Ibn Abi Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), he sneaked out of the crowd and entered his sister (Ummul Momineen) Aisha’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) house.  After his address, Marwan also came to Ummul Momineen Aisha’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) house and maligned Abdur Rahman Ibn Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) loudly from outside, quoting verse 17 of Surah Al-Ahqaf, falsely claiming that the verse had been revealed against Abdur Rahman Ibn Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  Marwan did not order his Guards to enter the house of Ummul Momineen Aisha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) to arrest Abdur Rahman Ibn Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) because he feared people will revolt if there was scuffle and possible injuries inside Ummul Momineen’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) house between the Guards and the inmates.  

It is in Hadith (Bukhari) – Narrated Yusuf bin Mahak:Marwan had been appointed as the governor of Hijaz by Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). He delivered a sermon and mentioned Yazid bin Muawiya so that the people might take the oath of allegiance to him as the successor of his father. Then Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ )told him something whereupon Marwan ordered that he be arrested. But Abdur Rahman ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) entered Ummul Momineen Aisha’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) house and they could not arrest him.  Marwan said, “It is he (‘Abdur-Rahman) about whom Allah revealed this Verse :

 وَالَّذِي قَالَ لِوَالِدَيْهِ أُفٍّ لَّكُمَا أَتَعِدَانِنِي أَنْ أُخْرَجَ وَقَدْ خَلَتِ الْقُرُونُ مِن قَبْلِي وَهُمَا يَسْتَغِيثَانِ اللَّهَ وَيْلَكَ آمِنْ إِنَّ وَعْدَ اللَّهِ حَقٌّ فَيَقُولُ مَا هَـٰذَا إِلَّا أَسَاطِيرُ الْأَوَّلِينَ    (And the one who says to his parents: “Fie on you! Do you hold out the promise to me……)(Al-Ahqaf-17) 

On that, Ummul Momineen Aisha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) said from behind a screen, “Allah did not reveal anything from the Qur’an about us except what was connected with the declaration of my innocence (of the slander).” (Bukhari, Book 6,  # 352)


Marwan kept a close watch on the 5 dignitaries who had opposed Yazid’s appointment as crown prince. They were threatened, intimidated and persecuted continuously.  One day Abdur Rahman Ibn Abu Bakr (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) came to know that Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was visiting Madina.  To avoid trouble,  Abdur Rahman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) left for Makka.  On his way he died in 666.   Some historians claim that the scary news was given to Abdur Rahman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)by State secret men and he was persuaded and guided to travel outside Madina. On the way to Makka, he was given a deadly poison in his food which caused his instant death.    


Meanwhile, Abdullah Ibn Abbas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)  agreed to give oath of allegiance to Yazid.  But Marwan could not force the remaining three into submission.  Looking at Marwan’s inability in pushing the remaining three dignitaries into submission, Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)replaced Marwan and appointed Walid bin Utbah bin Abu Sufyan (his nephew) as Governor of Madina.  Marwan was given new assignment at the Center (Damascus) as Secretary/Vazeer to the King. 

As against the above behavior of Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), compare the attitude Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and other dignitaries.Ibn Kathir has recorded in al-Bidaya wan Nihaya that, after the peace treaty, Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) helped Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to mobilize a strong contingent of trained Army men from Iraq and joined Muawiya’s  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) Syrian Army in fighting at the Western front against Byzantine.  In this endeavor, Hadhrat Hussain, Umar Ibn Abbas, Abdullah Ibn Zubair, Abu Ayyub Ansari and other Sahabah (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین) joined, forgetting about the treatment that was meted out to them by Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  Hadhrat Hassan and Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم) used to visit Muawiya(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) in Damascus to bring to his notice problems faced by people and suggested ways to alleviate them.  Even after the death of Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)visited Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) a few times to apprise him of issues related to common man.  

After Muawiya’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) death in 60 H (680), Marwan became Secretary/Vazier to the new King Yazid.  Islamic History has recorded that Yazid was adamant for forcing Imam Hussain  (علیھ السلا م) into submission.  He sent the following message to Walid bin Utaba, Governor of Madina through Marwan bin al-Hakam.  

“Seize Hussain, Abdullah Ibn Umar and Abdullah Ibn Zubayr to give the oath of allegiance. Act so fiercely that they have no chance to do anything before giving the oath of allegiance. ” 

After persistent pressure, intimidation and threats, Abdullah bin Umar(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) also agreed to give oath of allegiance to Yazid. 

Marwan and Walid bin Utaba (Governor of Madina) summoned Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Abdullah Ibn Zubair (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to their palace in Madina to secure oath of allegiance by force. Abdullah bin Zubair (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) did not go to the Governor’s house and left for Makka secretly.  Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) went to see the Governor.  During the meeting, the Imam  (علیھ السلا م) was forced for allegiance to Yazid with all kinds of threats and intimidation. Imam(علیھ السلا م) replied, he will not do anything secretly and whatever it is, he will do it in public. The Governor agreed, but Marwan objected and demanded Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to be arrested and tortured into submission.   Somehow the Imam  (علیھ السلا م) managed to come out unharmed from the meeting.  

Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) realized that  the behavior of Marwan and Walid was a cursor for the ensuing trouble for him and his family in Madina. To avoid bloodshed, the Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) left for Makka along with members of his family. This occurred on Friday 4th Sha’ban, 60 H (680).  Imam (علیھ السلا م) stayed in Makka in the house of Hadhrat Abbas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) for about four months.  Meanwhile, the news of Imam’s (علیھ السلا م) refusal to submit to Yazid and his travel to Makka was spread all over the Islamic State. 


The refusal of Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) to accept Yazid as Caliph was not for the reason that Imam (علیھ السلا م) wanted to become the Caliph himself; rather it was because he did not see Yazid as a true representative of Islam.  If Yazid had done tawbah from the sins he was committing openly and promised to abide by Quran and Sunnah, the Imam (علیھ السلا م) would have entered into a peace treaty with him, in line with the Peace Treaty between Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ),  and would have accepted him as the ruler.  The problem was Yazid’s open disregard for Islamic Sharia, and his evil deeds, particularly, drinking and womanizing.  Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) knew everything about his son.  In spite of that, he imposed him on  people as Amir ul Momineen.  Both, the father and the son were adamant to push everyone into submission.  In such a scenario, there was a need for someone to come forward and show Muslims the right path of Islam.  And Allah chose Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) for this august and revered responsibility.     


Earlier, Imam Hassan (علیھ السلا م) had agreed to accept Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) as the ruler on the primary condition that he will abide by Quran and Sunnah.  However, history is witness that Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) agreed on paper, but did not keep his promises.     


(i) Jalaluddin Suyuti wrote in Tarikh al Khulafa : “Yazid indulged in sinful behaviour. He married women along with their mothers, daughters and sisters.  He drank alcohol and did  not perform Salah.”


(ii) After the episode of Karbala, Yazid changed the governor of Madina from Waleed bin Utbah, to Uthman bin Muhammad. When Uthman bin Muhammad reached Madina, he asked a small number of respected people to go to meet Yazid in Syria.  Amongst them were Abdullah bin Hanzalah, Abdullah bin Abee Amar, Munzeer bin Zubear, etc. When they reached Syria, Yazid respected them as a guest is supposed to be respected.  He gave Abdullah bin Hanzalah a gift of 100,000 Dirhams, and gave the rest of them 10,000 Dirhams. When this caravan came back to Madina, the people of Madina asked Abdullah bin Hanzalah about Yazid. He replied, “We come from a person who does not practice religion. He drinks alcohol and listens to music.” If there were any pious people there, they would gather the people and overthrow him. The people said, “We have heard that Yazid respected you and has rewarded you for your allegiance to him.” Abdullah said, “Yes he has, and I have taken the money so that I can buy weapons to fight against him.” (History of Tabari)


(iii) Abdullah bin Zubair compared the character of Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Yazid as follows:


“Indeed, by God, they killed a person (Imam Hussain – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) who stood in prayer at night for long hours, who fasted frequently during the day, who had more right to lead Ummah than they did, and one who was more entitled to it,  in terms of religion and outstanding merit.   Indeed, by God, he (Imam Hussain – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) would never exchange the Qur’an for singing (like Yazid does) nor would he exchange fasting for drinking forbidden drinks, nor would he exchange religious gatherings for unlawful games. They will sure meet destruction.” (History of al-Tabari).   

As the news of Imam Hussain’s (علیھ السلا م) persecution in Madina and his travel to Makka reached other provinces, the people who had the love of Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and his Ahle Bait in their hearts felt extremely disturbed.  Kufa was a capital of Islamic State during Hadhrat Ali’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) Caliphate. Hadhrat Ali  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)had a large following in Kufa, Iraq.  It is reported that many people wrote individual and collective letters to Imam Hussain  (علیھ السلا م)from Kufa to come there and lead them against the un-Islamic rule and persecution of Yazid.


Around Ramadhan 60 H (680 AD) large number of letters were sent to Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) requesting him to come to Kufa. By Dhu al Hijja, the letters reached in thousands.  The Imam (علیھ السلا م) decided to send his cousin Muslim bin Aqeel (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to Kufa to find out facts.  When Muslim Ibn Aqeel (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), with his two young sons, reached Kufa, the people rallied around him in thousands.  In a matter of days the number of people supporting Muslim Ibn Aqeel(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) grew very large.  Looking at this trend, he wrote a letter of the Imam (علیھ السلا م) to immediately come to Kufa.


When Imam (علیھ السلا م) contemplated to proceed to Kufa after receiving Muslim Ibn Aqeel’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) letter, many people persuaded  him to rethink his decision because Kufans had given a lot of headache to Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) earlier. They had a  reputation to change sides quickly.  In reply, the Imam (علیھ السلا م) said the following: 

“Verily I had a dream, in which I saw the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  He ordered me to do something, which I will implement.  And I will not tell anyone about it until I complete this ordered task” (Tarikh al Islam by Dahabi; History of Al-Tabari, Al Bidaya wa Nihaya by Ibn Kathir)

The meaning of the above statement is,  “the time has come to give the ultimate sacrifice to protect Sahih Islam in the world.


Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) knew, right from the childhood, that he will be martyred at Karbala, Iraq.


(1) It is in Hadith – Abdullah narrates that his father said, from someone (fulaan), who said that Ummul Momineen Aisha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) or Umm Salama (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا), that Wakee says: “I can’t remember which one of them [Ummul Momineen Aisha – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا or Umm Salama – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا]  said that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)said: ‘An angel which had never visited me before came into the house today and told me: This son of yours, Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), will surely be killed. And if you wish (desire it) I can give you some of the soil of that land (Karbala) which he will die in. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: The Angel then brought me a soil that was red.'”


(Musnad Ahmad, Vol 2, Hadith 1357Haythami in  Majma’ Al-Zawaa’id;  Tabarani; Abu Ya’laa; Al-Bazzar, etc.).  They all said the Hadith narrators are trustworthy (thiqa).   


(2) It is in Hadith – Anas bin Malik (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) said:  “The Angel of Rain (Mika’eel – علیھ السلا م) prayed Allah for permission to make a visit to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم). Permission was granted; and on that particular day the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) was with Ummul Momineen Umm Salama (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا). The Prophet(صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) told her: O’Umm Salama! Guard the door and do not let anyone enter.’ ‘While she was at the door, Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) (an infant then) burst into the room. So the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)began to hug him and kiss him. The Angel then said: ‘Do you love him?’ The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: ‘Yes!’ The Angel replied: ‘Your nation will surely kill him!’ The Angel further said: ‘If you wish, I will show you the place in which they will kill him.’ (Musnad Abu Ya’laa, Vol 6, Hadith# 3402)


(3) It is in Hadith – Narrated Umm al-Fadl (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا)daughter of al-Harith (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).  Umm al-Fadl (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) went in to see Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and said, “Apostle of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), I had an objectionable dream last night.” He asked what it was and she replied, “It was terrible.” He asked, “But what was it?” She replied, “I seemed to see a piece of your body cut off and placed in my lap.” He said, “You have seen something good. If Allah wills Fatimah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا)will give birth to a son who will be in your lap.”  Fatimah(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) then gave birth to al-Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) who was placed in her lap as Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) had said.  One day she went in to see Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and placed him (Hadhrat Hussain – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) in his lap.  She turned round, and noticing tears falling from the eyes of Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), she said, “Apostle of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), for whom I would give my father and mother as ransom, what is the matter with you?” He replied, “Jibreel(علیھ السلا م) came to me and informed me that my people will kill this son of mine.” She asked if he really meant this one,  and he replied, “Yes, and he (Hadhrat Jibreel – علیھ السلا م) brought me a piece of red earth.” (Tirmidhi, Hadith # 1639)


The above authentic accounts show that Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) knew, right from his childhood, what will happen in Karbala. This was the reason he was spending his energies in explaining his opponents the facts about Islam and was trying to enlighten their hearts with Iman.   


The people in Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) household were also aware of the fact that the Imam (علیھ السلا م) will be martyred in Karbala.   Even the people who had accompanied him knew that their travel was for the sake of protecting Sahih Iman and Sahih Islam. This was the reason they showed unparallelled dedication and conviction and refused to leave the Imam (علیھ السلا م) alone.  And they became martyre legends in Imam’s (علیھ السلا م) company. 


When Umar Ibn Sa’d, the commander of Yazid’s Army decided to attack Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and his companions in Karbala on 10th Muharram, 680, Hurr came out of Umar Ibn Sa’d Army and joined Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ). Hurr was commander of the Yazidi Army of 1000 men who had stopped Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) a few days earlier. 


It is in Quran  –   مَن يَهْدِ اللَّهُ فَهُوَ الْمُهْتَدِي ۖ وَمَن يُضْلِلْ فَأُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ  ( Meaning – Whomever Allah takes to Hidaya, he is on Hidaya (right path). And whoever is left in Dhalalah (astray), then they are those who are in loss.    (Al-Araf – 178)


Hurr said to Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), ‘I am the person who made you encamp here and stopped you from going back to Makka, I swear to Allah, I did not realize that they actually wanted to kill you. Whatever I have done, was wrong. Will Allah forgive me for that?’  The Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) said, “of course, Allah will forgive you and I will pray for your forgiveness”.


MUSLIM IBN AQEEL (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)


When people rallied around Muslim Ibn Aqeel in Kufa, the Governor Nauman Ibn Basheer addressed people and warned them about the consequences. Meanwhile, Yazid came to know about the developments in Kufa.  He removed the incumbent Governor Nauman Ibn Basheer and appointed Ubaidullah Ibn Ziyad, the son of Ziyad bin Abih,  as Governor.  Our readers may be aware that  Muawiya (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), during his reign,  had announced that Ziyad bin Abih,  was the biological son of Abu Sufyan, born to Abih’s wife while she was living with Abih as his wedded wife.  (Imam Suyuti, Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, and others). Read more…


Ibn Ziyad was a ruthless tyrant.  He threatened, punished and bribed kufans who supported Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and secured their loyalties back to Yazid.  Thousands of people who had earlier rallied around Muslim bin Aqeel (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) in support of the Imam (علیھ السلا م) were no more there.  They all panicked and hid themselves in their homes.  Muslim bin Aqeel (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was left alone on the street in an alien place.  Yazidi Army arrested  him  after a massive man hunt and he was  tortured and killed mercilessly and his body was thrown from the top of the Governor’s palace in front of the people to scare them away from supporting the Imam (علیھ السلا م).Muslim bin Aqeel’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) two young children were also brutally murdered.  


Meanwhile, Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was already on his way to Kufa.  Ibn Ziyad sent an Army of 1000 men under the command of Hurr to stop Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and his companions from entering Kufa.  Hurr intercepted the Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and negotiations followed.  When Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) learnt about the situation in Kufa, it is reported that he agreed to return back.  But Ibn Ziyad was adamant.  He insisted the Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to pledge allegiance to Yazid, which Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) rejected. On 10th Muharram 61 H (680), the day of Ashoorah, Yazeedi Army under the command of Umar bin Sa’d attacked Imam Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).The Imam and his 72 companions fought bravely and killed hundreds of Yazeedi soldiers. The Yazeedi Army was in thousands, they attacked the small number of Imam’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) companions from all directions, raining their arrows.  In the end, all 72 were martyred.  The last one to be martyred was Imam Hussain  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) when his head was severed from his body. The severed body of the Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was trampled and mutilated under horses.  Shimr, the deputy commander of the Yazeedi Army,  took the head of the Imam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to Ibn Ziyad along with the survivors of Karbala, mostly women and children, including Hadhrat Ali bin Hussain Zain ul abideen (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) who was 22 years old, but seriously ill and bed ridden and could not fight in Karbala.  Later they were transported to Syria along with Imam’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) head to Yazid. All through the way, the Head of the Imam (علیھ السلا م) was displayed on the ‘staff of a Neza’ and people were told that this was the head of a Mutineer being taken to the Khalifa.  


Ibn Kathir wrote: 

(1) “Abi Hamza ash Shami from Abdullah al Yamani who narrated from Qasim bin Najit that he said: When Imam Hussain’s (علیھ السلا م) head was brought in the court of Yazid, he placed his stick on Imam’s (علیھ السلا م) teeth and said: The difference between him and me is,  as al-Hamam said,  ‘The swords are broken on the heads of those people who go against us and they are disobedient and cruel’.  Abu Barza as Salmi  said to him: By Allah your stick is touching the place which was kissed by the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)  for sure when Imam Hussain (علیھ السلا م) will arrive on day of judgment then Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) will be his intercessor. Whereas when you come,  your intercessor will be Ibn Ziyad.  Then he rose up, turned his back towards Yazid and left. “  

(2) It is narrated through Haris bin Ka’b from Fatima bint Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) that she said: When we were made to sit infront of Yazid, he had some mercy upon us, at that time a man from Syria came and asked Yazid to grant her, he meant me and I was a beautiful woman, hearing him I started to tremble and I thought that may be this was allowed for them, I held the clothes of my sister Zainab(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) who was elder and more intelligent than me, she knew that it was not allowed.  She said to the man: By Allah you have lied and said a lowly thing, this thing is not allowed between you and her. Yazid got angry and said to Zainab (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا), “No you have lied instead, because by God She is halal for me and if I want to do it with her then I may do so”. Zainab (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) said: By Allah it is definitely not allowed for you except if you leave our Ummah and choose a deen other than Islam. With Zainab’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) explanation, Yazid became red in anger and said: “You are challenging me,  is a proof of your brother and father being expelled from Islam”. Zainab (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) replied: “Your father, your grandfather and you were guided through the deen of Allah, Deen of my father, deen of my brother and deen of my maternal grandfather”. Yazid said: “O’enemy of Allah you have lied”.  Zainab (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) said: “What kind of Ameer ul Momineen are you that you abuse by being one?”  Zainab (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) said that Yazid became speechless.  The Syrian again asked for the lady.  Yazid said to the Syrian man “Get lost, may God give you painful death”.  (Al Bidayah Wan Nihaya Vol 8)
History of Islam has recorded  that fearing people’s revolt, Yazid started treating Imam Hussain’s (علیھ السلا م) family with some kindness.  He tried to convince them that he did not order the killing of the Imam(علیھ السلا م) and it was Ibn Ziyad who killed the Imam (علیھ السلا م).  This was a political stunt, as Islamic History is witness that Yazid did not take any action against Ibn Ziyad.  After sometime, Imam’s (علیھ السلا م)family members were sent back to Madina.