Renowned religious scholar from Pakistan, Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, has been named on top of a list of 500 most influential Muslims in the world.
The list was published by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center, an independent research entity affiliated with the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought, Jordan.
Prime Minister Imran Khan, religious scholar Maulana Tariq Jameel, and religious preacher Maulana Nazur Rehman, are the other three Pakistanis featured in the top 50 of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the world.
Mufti Taqi Usmani, who tops the list, is a leading scholar of Hadith, Islamic jurisprudence and Islamic finance. He is considered to be the founder of Islamic banking in Pakistan.
He has served as Judge of the Shari’at Appellate Bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan from 1982 to May 2002. He specialises in Hadith, Islamic jurisprudence and financial matters.
PM Imran, featured as the 16th most influential Muslim personality globally, is a cricketer-turned politician who ascended to the most powerful office in Pakistan in 2018.
PM Imran led a massive movement against corruption and bad governance, stirring up support in the considerable youth population of Pakistan with promises of accountability and financial reform.
Maulana Tariq Jameel, who is number 36 on the list, is perhaps the most popular religious preacher in Pakistan.
The lectures of Maulana Jameel are usually based on self-purification and avoidance of violence, and the preacher, like PM Imran, is very popular with the young citizens of Pakistan.
Maulana Nazur Rahman, featured at the 50th number, is the fourth Amir of the Pakistani Tablighi Jamaat. He succeeded Haji Abdul-Wahhab who passed away in November 2018, aged 96.
Some Pakistanis with honorable mentions in the list include Professor Akbar Ahmed, religious scholar Sheikh Muhammad Ilyas Attar Qadri, Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai, scholar Sheikh Tahir-ul-Qadri, Advocate Khawar Qureshi among a host of others.
According to the royal center, Supreme Leader of Iran Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is the second most influential Muslim after Mufti Usmani, with Saudi King Salman, and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Muhammad bin Zayed listed at numbers three and four respectively.
Turkish President Erdogan and Jordan King Abdullah II also featured in the top 10. The list has named American Congresswoman Rashida Talib as 'Woman of the Year', and PM Imran as the 'Man of the Year'.
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