Today we introduce one of the most renowned Islamic Finance Scholars – Sheikh Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani. He is a famous scholar of Hadith, Islamic jurisprudence, and Islamic finance across Pakistan and around the world. Therefore, the Global Islamic Finance Report 2017 (GIFR) ranks Sheikh Taqi Usmani as the second most influential individual in the global Islamic financial services sector after Sheikh Saleh Kamil. Besides his contribution that goes beyond Islamic Finance, he is also known for his comprehensive understanding of fiqh al-mu’amalat al-maliya (jurisprudence of financial transactions).
Born in 1943, Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani obtained his first education under the control of his parents at home. He then attended classes and got his primary education at Darul Uloom Karachi. He earned the title of “Mufti” after obtaining his Takhassus degree in fiqh and ifta in 1961. Later Sheikh Taqi Usmani got his bachelor’s degree in economics and politics and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Karachi in 1964 and 1967 respectively. In 1970 he graduated with his Master’s degree from the University of Punjab, majoring in Arabic language and literature. So, Sheikh Taqi Usmani is an expert at Hadith, Fiqh, and Economics, and he has been teaching these Islamic fields at the Darul Uloom Karachi for more than 40 years.
Sheikh Mufti Taqi Usmani has published more than 143 books in Urdu, Arabic, and English. One of his most searched books is called “An Introduction to Islamic Finance,” which describes Islamic finance principles in depth. Moreover, he provided a translation of the Qur’an in both English and Urdu. And he conducted seminars giving comments on different ideas about Islamic Finance. Additionally, he wrote articles on various topics on Islamic Finance and Banking and published them in Islamic journals and magazines.
Sheikh Taqi Usmani has held key positions at different sharia boards and Islamic institutions. Currently, he sits at sharia boards of 14 firms, including the Central Bank of Bahrain and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank. Moreover, he is a member of the Islamic Fiqh Academy in Jeddah and a chairman of the International Shariah Standard Council, Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI) in Bahrain.
He is a very prominent scholar within Pakistan as well. He introduced the concept of Islamic Banking and established Meezan Bank in Pakistan. Furthermore, he worked as Judge of the Shari’at Appellate Bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan for about 20 years.
During his career as a judge, he was a part of some of the most important Shari’a rulings in history. The most remarkable ruling was a thorough judgement on the prohibition of interest. This judgement has opened the possibility of the total removal of interest in Pakistan’s economy.
Considering his contributions in public services, he was awarded the “Star of Excellence” (Sitara-i Imtiaz) nomination by the president of Pakistan in 2019.
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