This is the story of a well known Shaykh (HA) in UK.
Shaykh is very ill and bed ridden for many years. It was narrated to me by Shaykh (HA) and his wife themselves otherwise I don’t think many people know about their background.
Shaykh (HA) came to UK to complete his post graduate university education towards the end of 1960’s, while studying he got engaged to a young woman from a long line of distinguished Deobandi Ulamah & Madhaykh back home. Since it was anticipated that this girl will eventually move to UK parents ensured that she learned English and read as much material in English as possible.
Aunty (HA) told me that in the 1960’s there wasn’t a lot of Islamic English material available but her father wrote to Darul-ulooms all over India/Pakistan and subscribed to all English magazines to ensure that she read them and was fluent in English. Since her father was a leading Deobandi Shaykh he ensured that his daughter read nothing except for Deobandi material even for practising English.
She never left home and wore a Niqab but all efforts were made to ensure that she learned and practised as much as English as possible. She had no contact with men and had never taken her Niqab off in front of anyone.
Meanwhile back in UK, the Shaykh (HA) was like another typical university Youngman in UK he liked movies and going out but never drank or had relationships with other woman.
They married and she arrived in UK in Niqab. Straight after getting on the plane he asked her to remove her Niqab because they were heading to UK. She begged and cried but he would have none of it so she had no choice but to take her Niqab off in the plane, she begged not to have her Hijab removed so he let her wear a scarf as long as it was nice and colourful, presentable and professional.
After arriving in London a few weeks later the new James Bond movie Dr No came to the cinemas so he told his wife to go with him to the Cinema to watch it. This is a woman whose father never had a Radio in the house, she cried and cried but he had none of it so both went to the Cinema to watch Dr No.
Then he told her that she needs to brush up his English and the best way is to work!
Aunty (HA) told me that she was so ashamed of men looking at her face that after he slept she would put her Musallah down and cry to Allah (SWT) to deliver her from her ordeal and make Astaghfaar thousands of times.
Desperate for help she wrote to her father explaining in detail and asking for Mushwarah to apply for Khul because she couldn’t take the humiliation of bearing her face in public anymore. Her father wrote back that if he is praying 5 times daily (which he was) there are no grounds for Khul and although he is indulging in Fisq she should make dua, make Astaghfaar and give him Dawah with love and kindness to change him but if she did think that she needs to end the relationship then it’s her decision.
He was a kind husband in every other way so she decided to be patient and started part time work. In the meantime she consigned herself to obeying her husband, watched movies, walked around London (without Niqab, worked) but continued to make Astaghfaar and continued to give Dawah to her husband.
This lasted for a decade until he changed a little bit and grew his Beard a little longer. Kids came along so she used the excuse that she needs to look after the kids so quit her job, money was never the issue anyways.
Another few years past until Shaykhul-Hadeeth (Maulana) Zakariyya Kandhalwi (RA) came to UK and then Darul-uloom Bury was established and again slowly he began to change. He decided on a whim to go to Madina and visit Shaykhul-Hadeeth (Maulana) Zakariyya Kandhalwi (RA), although she just had a baby and they couldn’t afford it she still went but they never got a chance to Shaykhul-Hadeeth (Maulana) Zakariyya Kandhalwi (RA).
He changed some more. Two decades past and he now started to become regular in Tahajjud and his Adhkaar until Allah (SWT) blessed him so much that he surpassed many in the ranks of closeness to Allah (SWT).
So in the end Aunty told me that she went through unbearable pain, anguish and ordeal but eventually Allah (SWT) changed her husband upon the Sunnah to such an extent and accepted his Tawbah to such a degree that people praise him but nobody knows about the tears which shed in the long nights asking Allah (SWT) to change the heart of her husband for nearly 2 decades!