|Biographical detail : ||Ahmadi’s Khalifatul Masih IV.
Mirza Tahir was the spiritual leader and fourth successor of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian, who founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association in 1889. Mirza Ghulam’s great-grandson, Mirza Masroor Ahmad, has been elected as Khalifatul Masih V (Masih II was his son and third and fourth successors were his grandsons).
Mirza Tahir Ahmad was elected in 1982, Khalifatul Masih (the Caliph of the Messiah) in Rabwah, Pakistan, which became the headquarters of the movement after the partition of the Indian subcontinent in 1947. The movement came under pressure in Pakistan from 1974 – the Ahmadis are seen as heretics by mainstream Islam – when the government of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto orchestrated a campaign against them. Subsequently General Zia ul-Haq promulgated an ordinance that sought to proscribe some of the community’s activities.
Mirza Tahir Ahmad moved to England in 1984, and took residence in Fazal Mosque in Southwest London. This mosque, built in 1924, has become the centre of the worldwide community’s activities. Mirza Tahir worked for the education and spiritual training of his community and the movement built mosques, hospitals and schools all over the world. He was also the driving force behind the establishment of the Muslim Television Ahmadiyya, a 24-hour satellite television channel, where he regularly appeared in its broadcasts.
Mirza Tahir has authored a comprehensive treatise 'Revelation, Rationality, Knowledge and Truth' in which he endeavoured to establish the truth of the Qura’an in the light of modern science.
There are around 6,000 Ahmadis in Britain and the rest are concentrated in the Indian subcontinent, Western Africa and Indonesia. Prominent Ahmadis included the late Sir Muhammad Zafrulla Khan, the first Foreign minister of Pakistan and Dr Abdus Salam, the Nobel laureate in physics in 1979.
Mirza Tahir Ahmad was born in Qadian, the Indian Punjab, a farmer’s son.