(Summarized from Dr Taqi al-Din Nadwi’s Thabat: al-Durr al-Thamin p.75-76)
He is the Imam, the scholar, the Muhaddith: Abd al-Ghani bin Abu Saeed bin Safi al-Umari. He was from the family of Sh. Ahmad al-Sirhindi, the Imam of the Mujaddadi order.
He was born in the month of Shaban in the year 1235 in the city of Dehli. He memorized the Quran and studied grammar and Arabic with Mawlana Habibullah al-Dehlawi.
He then turned his focus towards the study of fiqh, he heard hadith and read other subjects with his father, including the six books of hadith and the Muwatta via the transmission of Muhammad bin Hasan al-Shaybani.
He read Sahih al-Bukhari with Sh. Muhammad Ishaq ibn Muhammad Afdal al-Dehlawi the grandson of Sh. Abd al-Aziz.
He read Mishkat al-Masabih with Sh. Makhsusallah Ibn Shah Rafi al-Din al-Dehlawi. He read Sahih al-Bukhari and was given general ijazah for the rest of the hadith collections by Sh. Muhammad Abid al-Sindi al-Ansari al-Madani.
He also received an ijazah from Sh. Abu Zahid Ismaeel bin Idris al-Rumi then al-Madani.
He took the spiritual path from his father, and travelled with him to the two holy sanctuaries in the year 1294, he performed Hajj and then returned back to India. He then busied himself with the teaching of hadith with many students studying with him.
When the tribulation of the British colonial conquest of Dehli took place in the year 1273 he decided to leave and travelled to the two holy sanctuaries. He took up residence in Madina the Illuminated –Allah increase it in nobility- and began teaching hadith and busying himself in acts of worship.
Countless scholars benefited from his gatherings, the people of India and Arab lands agreed upon his wilayah and greatness.
He authored a fine set of notes upon Sunan Ibn Majah called ‘Injah al-Hajah’.
Sh. Abd al-Ghani al-Dehlawi passed away on Tuesday, with six days of Muharram remaining in the year 1296 in Madinah the Illuminated. May Allah (the Exalted) have mercy on him and all of the believers, and increase our nisbat with him in this world and the next. Ameen.
For more details refer to: al-Ialam (7/320) of al-Hasani, Fihris al-Faharis (p.758), the introduction of Awjaz al-Masalik (p.145) and al-Yani’ al-Janni (p.8)