September 2007


THE BATTLE OF BADR(17 RAMADHAAN 2 A.H.)

taken from inter-islam.org

It was common knowledge in Makkah and Madinah that Abul Hakam Umar bin Hishaam (Abu Jahl) was planning an attack against the Muslims. He incited the Quraish to avenge the death of Amr bin al-Hazramee at Nakhla.

At the beginning of Ramdhaan, Rasulullah called an assembly of Muslims and informed them that a Quraish trading caravan heavily laden with goods including armoury, was returning to Makkah from Syria. Rasulullah said:
‘It is possible that this caravan is destined as an Allah-sent gift to you’.

Since a full scale battle was not expected, Rasulullah left Madinah on the 12th Ramadhaan with 313 poorly-equipped Sahaaba (R.A.) 70 camels and 2 horses. At times two or three Sahaaba (R.A.) took turns to ride on each camel. Rasulullah appointed Hazrat Abu Lubaba bin Muzir (R.A.) as governor of Madinah and sent him back. Before reaching Safra, Rasulullah sent Basbas bin Amr Johnee (R.A.) and Adee bin Abi Zaghba (R.A.) ahead as scouts to ascertain the whereabouts of Abu Soofyan who led the Quraish trade caravan.

In the meantime Abu Soofyan was informed by some travellers that the Muslims were approaching in his direction. He duely sent Dam Dam Ghaffaaree to Makkah with the message that Nabi was on his way to intercept and attack him and that the Quraish should rush to his aid if they wish to save the caravan.

There was an uproar in Makkah when the message was received by the Quraish. Nearly every family had invested their wealth in this particular trade mission as their aim was to use the entire profits to prepare for a war which would crush the Muslims for ever. Abu Jahl bin Hishaam, the sworn enemy of the Muslims, prepared an army of 1000 well-equipped warriors, with 700 camels and 300 horses. With the expception of Abu Lahab bin Abdul Muttalib, all chiefs of every clan in Makkah were ready for war to save their caravan. Some of them had invested all their money and were dependent on its success.

As per their traditions, the Quraish left Makkah with great pomp and ceremony; with women to cheer and entertain them; with drummers to stir their fight spirits; and above all, they carried every conceivable item of luxury for their journey. Abu Jahl planned to spend three days of feasting, entertainment and merry-making before setting upon the Muslims.
Meantime, Hazrat Basbas bin Amr Johnee (R.A.) and Hazrat Adee bin Abi Zaghabaa (R.A.), the two Muslim scouts, reached Badr and learnt from the conversation ot two women at the oasis that Abu Soofyaan’s caravan was due to arrive at Badr in a short time. They reported this information to Rasulullah . When Abu Soofyan reached Badr his shrewd observations of tell-tale signs of camels droppings and date pits, forewarned him of the Muslims presence in the vicinity. Immediately he changed directions. He sent a second message to the Quraish that he was safely on his way and that the Quraish army should return to Makkah.

However, the Quraish had camped at Johfa when they received Abu Soofyan’s second message. Their was a difference of opinion in the camps whether to proceed to Badr and fight the Muslims or to return to Makkah now that their caravan was safe from a Muslim attack. Akhnas bin Shuraiq, a respected chief of the Quraish, advised the Makkahs to return, but Abu Jahl was adamant and persisted in using the excuse of Amr bin Hazramee’s death to attack the Muslims. He was not prepared to reason with some of the most enlightened chiefs. Akhnas bin Shuraiq returned to Makkah with some of the members of the Banu Zohra and Banu Hisham tribes. The rest of the Quraish, some of them very reluctantly, followed Abu Jahl towards Badr. His heart was filled with malice and vengeance and he made it known that nothing would satisfy him more than seeing the extinction of Islam and the death of Rasulullah .

When Rasulullah turned towards Badr to intercept Abu Soofyan, he received the news of the presence of Abu Jahl with his formidable army camped at the only oasis with water and the solid ground around it. Rasulullah held consultation with the Sahaaba (R.A.) as the odds were overwhelming against the Muslims. Hazrat Abu Bakr (R.A.), Hazrat Umar bin Khattab (R.A.) and the Muhajireen spontaneously declared their devotion to Nabi and pledged to fight the Kuffaar. The Ansaar were also devoted and loyal, but Rasulullah wanted to assess their opinion in such an urgent crisis. Hazrat Miqdaad bin Aswad (R.A.) of the Ansaar said:
‘O Rasulullah we are at you service. We are not cowards frightened or unfaithful like the tribe of Isra’eel who said to Hazrat Moosa (A.S.) when called upon to fight in the path of Allah: ‘Go thou and thy lord and fight. We will sit here’. We will fight to the right of you, to the left of you, in front of you and behind you’. Hazrat Sa’ad bin Muaz (R.A.) the chief of the Ansaar time again hearing Rasulullah asking for opinions said:
‘O Rasul of Allah. you have had enough counsel’.
‘Yes’ said Rasulullah .
Hazrat Sa’ad bin Muaz (R.A.) said:
‘Perhaps you asked our (Ansaar) counsel because we originally offered to defend ourselves only if attacked in Madinah. We care not for what we promised then. We stand by you to do what ever you ask us to do. Invite us to fight, we will do more; command us to jump into the sea, we will not hesitate. The enemy shall not get at you, without stepping over our dead bodies’.

A Divine revelation to Rasulullah further bolstered the spirit of the faithful, as the survival of Islam depended on the outcome of this confrontation. It was to be a battle between truth and falsehood.

With this small band of brave Sahaaba (R.A.) Rasulullah reached Badr and had to contend with the situation where loose sand hampered their movement and the holy water spring was already taken up by the enemy camp. But suddenly, by Divine command a torrential rain came down. Rasulullah instructed the Sahaaba ( R.A.) to quickly build ponds to store the rain water. The ground under them hardened. On the other hand, the Quraish were seen slithering and sliding in sand and mud.

The Sahaaba (R.A.) built a shelter for Rasulullah on a high mound from which position, Rasulullah had commanding view of the plain below. The Sahaaba (R.A.) took turns to stand guard over Rasulullah at the entrance of the shelter. Towards evening Rasulullah sent Hazrat Ali bin Abu Talib (R.A.), Hazrat Zubair bin Awaam (R.A.), Hazrat Sa’ad bin abi Waqaas (R.A.) and a few other Muslims to scan the enemy’s movement. They managed to capture two slaves of the Quraish who gave the Muslims valuable information of the enemy and the number of their animals

At nightfall, no Muslim dared to think of sleep knowing well the type of treachery the enemy was capable of. Rasulullah spent the night in meditation and prayer, entreating for help of Allah and for victory for the handful Muslims. He exclaimed:
‘O Allah should this small group of believers perish this day, no one will be left on earth to worship you and carry your message to the world’. The next morning, on Friday 17th Ramadhaan 2 A.H. Rasulullah arranged the military formation of his small army. As per Arabian tradition, three of the Quraish warriors, Utbah bin Rabi’ah, his brother Shaibah bin Rabi’ah and Waleed bin Shaibah Rabi’ah (son of Shaibah) advanced into the open space which divided the Muslims from the idolators. They challenged three warriors from the Muslim rank in single combat. Hazrat Auf bin Ufra (R.A.), his brother Hazrat Muawwaz bin Ufra (R.A.) and Hazrat Abdullah bin Rawaha (R.A.) came out to face the three Kuffaar warriors. When Utbah bin Rabi’ah realized that the three warriors were from the Ansaar, he shouted:
‘O Muhammed , send three Quraish warriors to face us’.
Rasulullah instructed his uncle Hazrat Hamza bin Abdul Muttalib (R.A.) to fight Utbah; Hazrat Ubaidah bin Harith (R.A.) to face Shaibah and Hazrat Ali bin Abu Talib (R.A.) to encounter Walid bin Utbah. In a quick encounter the three Quraish soldiers were killed, and then began a pattern of general fighting. The odds were so great that one Sahaabi had to fight against three skilled and well armed Quraishi soldiers.

By Divine Command Hazrat Jibra’eel (A.S.) advised Rasulullah to pick a handful of sand and throw it in the midst of the enemy. The result was that the Kuffaar began to flee in all directions, It was a Divine victory for the Muslims. Seventy kuffaar soldiers were killed, seventy kuffaar were taken prisoners and the rest fled the battlefield.

Two very young Muslim youths from the Ansaar, Hazrat Muaz bin Ufra (R.A.) and Hazrat Muaz bin Amr bin Jamooh (R.A.) had taken a vow to kill Abu Jahl. They had strong feelings of dislike for Abu Jahl as he had treated Rasulullah with extreme abuse. Abu Jahl deserved death for his wickedness. When Abu Jahl was pointed out to them, the youth set upon him, riddled his body with wounds and left him for dead on the ground.

Rasulullah ‘s mind at this stage was more occupied with the fate of Abu Jahl than with that of any of his other enemies. Rasulullah asked someone to find the whereabouts of Abu Jahl. Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (R.A.) went out in search and found him in the midst of a pile of corpses. The chief of the idolaters was still breathing. Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (R.A.) placed his foot on the dying enemy’s neck and said:
‘O enemy of Allah! See how Allah has humiliated you’.
Saying this Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (R.A.) was about to sever his neck when Abu Jahl shouted:
‘Have you ever seen a noble fellow as I, murdered by such an ignoble ploughman?’
To put an end to the infidel’s insults, Hazrat Abdullha bin Mas’ood (R.A.) cut off the head and brought it to Rasulullah . At the sight of the blood-stained face of the enemy, Rasulullah exclaimed:
‘Surely, this man was the detestable Pharaoh of his nation’.

During the battle Hazrat Bilal (R.A.) spotted Umayyah bin Khalaf, his former cruel master and he recalled the tortures Umayyah had meted out to him. Inspite of the pleading of Hazrat Abdur-Rahmaan bin Auf (R.A.), who had been Umayyah’s friend, the Muslims pounced on him and killed him.

After the battle, there was much speculation among the people as to the part played by Rasulullah in throwing a handful of sand which defeated the powerful army of the Quraish. But a Divine revelation followed to this effect:
It is not you who slew them; it was Allah: When you
threw (a handful of dust) it was not your act, but
Allah’s. (Surah: Anfal v:17)

It was the battle of ‘good against ‘evil’. Evil was defeated and good had triumphed.
Rasulullah remained on the plains of the battle of Badr for three days to bury the dead and gather the spoils of war (booty) which he left to be guarded by the family of Najjaar. The Muslims lost fourteen Mujahideen (soldiers of Allah); six Muhajireen and eight Ansaar thus earning eternal glory as the first martyrs in the Holy War (Jihaad). The bodies of the kuffaar were gathered and buried in a dried up well.

Rasulullah sent a message of glad tidings to Madinah. When Hazrat Zaid bin Harith (R.A.) and his adopted son Hazrat Ibn-i-Ruhah (R.A.) reached Madinah with the good news of victory, they found Hazrat Uthman bin Affan (R.A.) and others having completed the funeral rites of Hazrat Roqayyah (R.A.) the beloved daughter of Rasulullah . Hazrat Uthman bin Affan (R.A.) was exempted from taking part in the Battle of Badr so that he could remain behind and take care of his ailing wife, Hazrat Ruqayyah (R.A.). Later, Rasulullah gave his daughter Hazrat Umme Kulthoom (R.A.) in marriage to Hazrat Uthman (R.A.) . By virtue of his marriage to the two daughters of Rasulullah , Hazrat Uthman (R.A.) was honoured with the title of ‘Zun-Nurain’- the possessor of two lights.

On reaching Madinah, Rasulullah gave the question of the prisoners top priority. Countrary to all treatment and customs of the Arabs, the prisoners were treated with the greatest level of humanity. Rasulullah gave strict orders that respect should be paid to their misfortunes, and they should be treated with kindness.The Sahaaba (R.A.) to whose care he entrusted them, faithfully obeyed his instructions. Those of the prisoners who had no clothes, were provided with dress, and they were fed on par with the Muslims. They shared their own food with the prisoners, giving them bread which forms the best part of their meals, satisfying themselves with dates alone. A Quraishi prisoner in later days remarked:
‘Blessing be on the men of Madinah. They gave us wheaten bread to eat when there was little of it; contending themselves with dates’.

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The Qur’an will be a proof for us or against us on the Day of Judgment.

This is due to the statement of the Messenger (sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam): “And the Qur’an is a proof for you or against you.” [Muslim] So one of two things will occur with this proof, the Book of Allah. It will either be in your favor, a proof for you on the Day when you will need every single good deed, or it will be something standing against you, the very Speech of your Creator, a proof against you! Who could be saved from the terrors of that Day if Allah’s own Speech is against him?!?! Think carefully, dear Muslim brother or sister, about your position with the Qur’an! Are you neglecting it, contradicting it, being heedless of its orders and prohibitions, are you thinking deeply over it?! Will it be on your side on the Day of Judgment.?! O Allah! We ask you, by Your Glorious Speech and the rest of your beautiful Names and Attributes, to make the Qur’an a proof for us! O Allah! Don’t make the Qur’an a proof against us on that Day, and save us from the hellfire! For if Allah makes the Qur’an a proof in our favour on that Day, then it would also be an intercessor for us, when NO intercession will take place except by His Permission.

Is Reciting Qur’an Without Understanding Useless?

(taken from al balagh)

By Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Posted: 5 Safar 1422, 29 April 2001

Q.) My question to Maulana Sahib is regarding the purpose of Qur’an. Is it just reading it, or understanding it? This question is regarding the people who do not understand Arabic.
I have seen many people who just read and listen to Qur’an without Tarjumaah (translation), and know zero percent of what Allah Ta’ala is saying to them. When I ask them why don’t you listen to the recitation plus tarjumaah they insist that there is a special effect of the words and that the Qir’at (recitation) of Qur’an and its virtue is unmatchable.

My mind does not accept this. Although I believe that the words of Qur’an do have a very special effect and yet there is a great virtue of listening to them. But I think that this is a secondary blessing of Allah. I think what Qur’an has to give is just hidden in its words. Same as if your mother asks you to do something in French and you don’t understand French, then you can’t help yourself by acting upon her order.

And I think the best is that everybody should try to learn Arabic.

Please guide me through this matter. [Taemoor Abbasi (Computer Systems Engineering, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada)]

A.) The noble Qur’an is that noble and blessed book of Allah Ta’ala which He revealed for the guidance of mankind. The virtues of reciting the Qur’an are numerous, but there is one virtue which supercedes all others.

Sayyidna Abu Sa’eed Khudri, Radi-Allahu anhu narrates that Rasulullah said, ‘That person who due to excessive recitation of the Qur’an is not able to make Allah Ta’ala’s Dhikr and Du’a, Allah Ta’ala will bestow such a person with more blessings and Ni’mat than even those who make Dhikr and Du’a.’ (Tirmidhi). What better virtue can there be, when Allah Ta’ala takes it upon Himself to bless such people who recite the Qur’an excessively?

The question arises that whether a person will attain this virtue, by only reciting it with understanding, or does he also obtain the benefits if he recites without understanding?

Sayyidna Abdullah ibn Ma’sood, Radi-Allahu anhu narrates that Rasulullah said, ‘That person who recites one letter from the Kitabullah, he will get one reward, and one is multiplied by ten.’ He further went on to say, ‘I do not say that Alif, Laam, Meem is one letter, but instead alif is one letter, laam is one letter and meem is one letter.’ (Tirmidhi)

If we ponder over this Hadith, we will find that there is no condition that the reciter will only get Thawab (reward) if he recites the Qur’an with understanding.

In the noble Qur’an, there are many Ayahs which we do not know the meaning of, for example, Huroof Muqattaat, which appear at the beginning of some Surahs, e.g. Alif-laam-meem.

We do not know the meaning of such Ayahs, but we still recite them. If we do not get reward for reciting the Qur’an without understanding, then it will imply that we will not get reward for reciting these Ayahs of the Qur’an as we do not know their meanings, but Nabi chose the words Alif-laam-meem knowing well that he had not explained them to the Ummah, yet he still commanded us to recite them, and described the virtues for reciting such three alphabets.

From the above points, it is clear that even though a person recites the Qur’an without understanding, he will still attain the virtues and benefits of reciting it.

However, if after learning how to recite the Qur’an, a person goes on to learn the meaning of the Qur’an so that he understands the orders and commands of Allah Ta’ala, the reward for such a person is certainly more.

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best.

(1248AH – 1297AH) (1852AD – 1901AD)

Hadhrat Maulana’s background and education

Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) was born in 1248 AH (1852 AD) and passed away at a young age of 49 in 1297 AH (1901 AD). The name of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) seems older than his life due to his prominence. In reality, this is barakah that Allah Ta’ala had granted him in his life.

Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi’s title was Hujjatul Islam (the proof of Islam). Generally this title is given to such a person who has such great qualities that if such a person was a Muslim and practiced upon Islam, this itself is a proof that Islam is the true religion. Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi’s ancestral background reaches up to Abu Bakr Siddique (Radiyallahu anhu). Therefore, he is known as Siddiqi.

Hadhrat Maulana acquired his knowledge at a very young age and he was known to be very brilliant. He traveled to Delhi with Hadhrat Maulana Mamlook Ali Sahib (Rahmatullah Alayhi) who was a very great Alim of that time. Previously we discussed that Haji Imdadullah Muhajir Makki Sahib (Rahmatullah Alayhi) also benefited from Hadhrat Maulana Mamlook Ali (Rahmatullah Alayhi).

Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) acquired his education in all fields Sarf, Nahwa, Tafseer, etc. from Hadhrat Maulana Mamlook Ali (Rahmatullah Alayhi) but acquired Hadith from Shah Abdul Ghani Muhaddith Delwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi). Maulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) was with him in acquiring Hadith from Shah Abdul Ghani (Rahmatullah Alayhi).

Some dreams of Hadhrat Maulana
Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) used to see many pious dreams. Once he saw a dream that he was sitting on top of the Kabah Shareef and many streams were flowing from his hands to many parts of the world. He related this dream to his Ustadh Hadhrat Maulana Mamlook Ali (Rahmatullah Alayhi) who interpreted the dream that the world will benefit from the knowledge of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi).

Hadhrat Maulana founded Darul Uloom Deoband and the branches of Darul Uloom Deoband are spread throughout the different parts of the world. Once he also saw a dream that he was sitting above the Kabah Shareef and facing towards Baghdad. There was a stream flowing from there, which touched his feet. The dream was interpreted that the Hanafi Madhhab would spread through Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi). Imam Abu Hanifa (Rahmatullah Alayhi) was from Baghdad and the Hanafi Madhhab was established from there.

Hadhrat Maulana’s knowledge
Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) had taken bay ‘at on the hands of Hadhrat Haji Imdadullah Muhajir Makki (Rahmatullah Alayhi). Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi’s Uloom was very deep. Maulana Yaqub Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) who was the first Ustadh of Darul Uloom Deoband and a great Muhaddith said that he read Aab-e-Hayat of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) six times and has understood some of it.

One can imagine what depth of Uloom and what insight was in that kitab. Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) says that Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) wrote such kitabs that if his name was not written on those kitabs, and if it was translated into Arabic then the Arab Ulama would have thought that Imam Razi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) or Imam Ghazali (Rahmatullah Alayhi) wrote those kitabs.

Imam Razi and Imam Ghazali (Rahmatullah Alayhi) were great thinkers and philosophers of their times. Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi’s depth of Uloom is also well known. He says, “I read the books of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi RA and I don’t understand them.” He says, “Somebody has to put a lot of pressure on one’s mind to understand some of what Maulana Qasim meant but I didn’t have the habit to put pressure on my mind to understand it. So I consoled myself by saying that there are other simple kitabs and I acquired my knowledge from there.”

Hadhrat Maulana Qasim (Rahmatullah Alayhi) used to work in the library of Hadhrat Maulana Ahmad Ali Saharanpuri (Rahmatullah Alayhi) and make tasheeh (correction) of kitabs. He always had this inclination towards kitabs and anything to do with academics. Hadhrat Maulana memorized the Quran late in life in two Ramadhans. Effectively in two months. In the following Ramadhan he would perform one and a quarter juz and the listener would think that he is an old Hafiz.

Debating skills of Hadhrat Maulana
Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) was a great debater and very witty. The British sent many Christian missionaries to India to propagate Christianity. They were proud that they have sent the world’s best missionaries to India to propagate Christianity. One person arranged a debate and called all the Ulama. He also called Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi). The Hindus were also invited but they did not participate because this was a debate between the Islam and Christianity. They were there as observers.

Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) presented such a powerful speech in substantiation of Islam against Christianity that the Christian Missionaries who were regarded to be world-renowned missionaries were severely defeated. They stated that they have gone to so many debates and conferences and they haven’t heard the like of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi). Some Hindu pundits also started debates with Muslims. They felt that if Christian missionaries can debate with the Muslims then we too could debate with Muslims. One pundit arranged a debate. When this pundit heard that Maulana Qasim Nanotwi was going to address this debate, he fled.

Humility of Hadhrat Maulana
Hadhrat Maulana was very simple. If someone were to look at him they would have thought that he was a villager. The British were also misled because of Maulana’s simplicity. When a warrant of arrest was issued by the British against Hadhrat Maulana, they were looking for a person who would be well dressed. They saw a person with simple clothing and thought that he was a villager.

Maulana wouldn’t make imaamat and he always preferred to be a muqtadi and follow the Imam. He also wouldn’t even give talks, but because of the need of the time he used to go and join the debates. He was so humble that once he said, “I am disgraced among the Sufis.” My understanding of this is, what a Sufi is supposed to be, he stated, “I did not live up to the expectation of the Sufis, or to the expectations of the people about the Sufis.” He also mentioned, “I have a stain of being a Molvi on myself.” He further mentions, “Had it not been for the stain of being a Molvi, even the sand wouldn’t have known of Qasim Nanotwi.”

When there is a fruit tree and the branch is laden with fruits then it goes more down. When a branch is laden with fruits and because of the heaviness of the fruits, the branch also lowers itself. If Hadhrat Maulana perceived some pride in some student then he would make that particular student pick somebody else’s shoes to make the student’s Islah. But at the same time if he saw humbleness in any student, then Hadhrat Maulana Qasim Nanotwi himself would pick up the shoes of that particular student. Who would do that today?

Demise of Hadhrat Maulana
Hadhrat Maulana passed away in Deoband at the young age of 49. May Allah Ta’ala put Noor in the Qabr of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) and may Allah Ta’ala give us the benefit and roohaaniyat of Maulana Qasim Nanotwi (Rahmatullah Alayhi) and grant him a great reward for establishing Darul Uloom Deoband and spreading Uloom in the different parts of the world. (Ameen)

Al Mahmood with Mufti Ebrahim Desai (db) is an authentic resource on Tasawwuf, with articles by authentic scholars who embody the true spirit of Tazkiyah. It is named it after Mufti Mahmood-ul-Hasan Gangohi (rah), one of the most prominent khalifahs [spiritual representatives] of Shaykh-ul-Hadith Maulana Zakariyah Kandhalwi (rah). Mufti Ebrahim Desai (db), the khalifah of Mufti Mahmood-ul-Hasan Gangohi (rah) has founded this website in an effort to disseminate the authentic teachings of Tasawwuf as it was handed down from our pious predecessors.

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The Truth Team

 

 

 

Ramadhan Mubarak