Maulana Shahid Raza, head imam of the Leicester Central Mosque and a long-standing interfaith activist, passed away on 5th September, 2022 at the age of 72 after some years of ill-health. He is remembered by Shaikh Ibrahim Mogra, also of Leicester,: “I think the entire UK Muslim Community and beyond our borders. will be deeply saddened by his passing. He was a tremendous asset to our city and indeed to our country, in all walks of life – religious and social, particularly in building relations with different communities of our country.”
Dr. Musharraf Hussain of the Karimia Institute, Nottingham, in his tribute noted, “. . . His broad smile and grey hat were his trademarks. An eloquent and impressive speaker who conveyed the peaceful message of Islam . . . Maulana Shahid Raza was born in 1950 in Fatehpur, a small village in Bihar, eastern India, the eldest son of a renowned Islamic scholar of Jamia Naima of Moradabad, India. After graduating in science from Agra university he studied the Alim course at the famous seminary Jamia Naima Moradabad. Maulana Raza was widely loved and respected by all schools of thought in Islam and other religions. He had a single message of mutual respect and tolerance. Like his parents, Maulana Raza was affiliated with the Ashrafi Sufi order, he was a Chishti and his spiritual guide was Syed Mohammad Mukhtar Ashraf Ashrafi Jilani of Kuchocha, India.”
Maulana Shahid Raza was a recipient of an OBE in the 2008 New Year Honours List for services to the Muslim community in Leicester. In 2016, the University of Leicester conferred him an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws.
Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi rajiun.