“The Muslims as a separate nation in India on the basis of their religion is un-Islamic.”

— Allah Baksh Soomro in All India Azad

Conference, 1940

Born in Shikarpur in 1900, Allah Baksh Soomro was an immensely popular politician of Sindh. He also became the Chief Minister of the province twice during his political career. If one event were enough to register his name in the books of history, it was the controversy of Masjid Manzilgah. The way he dealt with the issue speaks volumes about his worldview that was immune from religious bigotry. Manzilgah was a building located in Sadho Bela, Sukkur which was taken over by the British after their conquest of Sindh. 

Local Muslims claimed the building to be a mosque and wanted to take back its control from the British. The local Hindus, however, were against this step since Manzilgah was located near their temples in Sadhu Bela. After many negotiations, Somroo allowed the local Muslims to take control of Manzilgah as a mosque but only on the condition that they will not prevent the playing of music in the nearby temples. Figures like Allah Bax Soomro are sorely needed on our political landscape in these times when religious harmony is fading away swiftly.