Strenuous efforts were made in the early 70's by Sunni Muslims to get Hadrat Shaykh al-Islam to come on a preaching mission and eventually the wishes of the Muslim Community were granted when Hadrat arrived in England for the first time in April 1974.
Hadrat made approximately thirty speeches on his first visit travelling all over the United Kingdom in very difficult surroundings. Most speeches were held in small and cramped venues with poor public address facilities. However, this was overcome with the way Hadrat captured the hearts of the people with his words of wisdom. The enthusiasts recorded every speech and these recordings remain evidence of the way Hadrat sought to transform the anti-Sunni climate that existed in England at that time with the spread WAHHABISM.
At the time the Wahhabis (Ahle Hadees/deobandi/tablighi Jama'ati's) had established several bases and were propagating their heretical brand of Islam that sought to dilute the true love of the Most Beloved Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala alayhi wa Sallam and the Awliya-Allah. They attacked almost every Sunni belief associated with orthodox Sunni Islam that places the love of Allah's Most Beloved Prophet Salla Allahu ta'ala alayhi wa Sallam as fundamental to a Muslim's faith. The Ahl al-Sunnah W'al Jama'ah ("Sunnis ") were nonplussed. Sunni Ulema appeared to have no answers as to how to stem the tide of Wahhabism, and while the ideological arguments against the Wahhabis had been won by Sunni scholars years ago - most notably by Imam-e-Ahl as-Sunnah Mujaddid-e-Deen 'o Millat A'LA HADRAT IMAM AHMAD RIDA KHAN [d.1340H] Barelwi Radi Allahu anhu, the work being done by the Wahhabis on the ground appeared almost impossible to combat.
The majority of the Sunni Ulema in Britain did not appear to be openly critical of the Wahhabi movement, and those who were critical achieved minimal success. Though scholars of repute had arrived with the waves of migrants in the 1960's and 1970's, no one person appeared to stand out as the undisputed leader of the Sunni Muslims of Britain to whom everyone could turn to for guidance and a saviour who would be able to take on the Wahhabis and other heretical and non Islamic movements such as the Sh'ia and Qadianis. Those Ulema who had sufficient knowledge were not competent orators which at the time was a necessity, while others simply refused to speak out against the Wahhabis for various reasons. Increasingly, Sunni Muslims started going to Wahhabi-controlled Mosques, the Sunnis that had just arrived from the Gujerat State of India. Sunnism was being corroded by the work of the heretical Tablighi Jamaat.
Hadrat Shaykh al-Islam spent the next thirty years in the true propagation of Islam through his speeches, spiritual gatherings, meetings with people and most notably by his impeccable behaviour and actions, exempliflying how a Muslim should conduct himself by harmonising the shariah with tariqat.
Hadrat made clear in his speeches why Sunni Muslims should refrain from following Wahhabi beliefs and why they were un-Islamic. Hadrat challenged the Wahhabis' to public debates to discuss his assertion that their beliefs were heretical and contrary to what is stated in the Qur'an al-Kareem and other religious books. This challenge was rarely accepted and on the occasions that it was, the Wahhabis would fail to show up. On the one occasion they did turn up, at Sutherland St Mosque in Leicester, they were comprehensively defeated by Hadrat who answered all the questions that the Wahhabis posed and when he asked a question in return, they could not answer and voluntarily left the Mosque in disgrace.
The leader that the Sunni Muslims of Britain had been yearning for was thus found in the shape of Hadrat. His speeches galvanised people into taking action; hundreds if not thousands became his disciples immediately, Sunnis started building their own Mosques, and other scholars started speaking out against Wahhabism and other heretical movements that had been established in Britain.
Hadrat Shaykh al-Islam probably saved thousands of people from the Wahhabi menace and ensured future generations did not fall prey to them. Hadrat was invited to preach by different communities, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis and Indians alike. Those Ulema that had established Mosques and Islamic Centres sought Hadrat with enthusiasm and Hadrat was welcomed with open arms by the likes of Hadrat Pir Allauddin Siddiqui, Hadrat Pir Maruf Hussain Shah Naushahi, Hadrat Allama Arif Ullah Siddiqui, Hadrat Pir Abdul Wahhab etc. However the Gujerati Sunni Muslim community owe a debt of graditude to Hadrat Shaykh al-Islam as he has bestowed particular blessings on them for the way they have attended him.
It wasnt long after Hadrat's name, speeches and character spread across many other countries as well as continents. Hadrat was sought and invited to other countries like Holland, Belgium and further afield.