Sir Syed Ahmad Khan was in Banaras, when his son, Syed Mahmud, was awarded a scholarship for higher studies in England by the British government of India. Accordingly, Sir Syed along with his son, Syed Mahmud and Syed Hamid, started for London on 1st April 1869. In London, he came across two social journals of social reformation, SPECTATOR and most probably TETLOR. These two journals inspired Sir Syed to start a journal to reforms the muslims of India. Sir Syed knew that in the past, muslims excelled in the field of technology, business, medicine and other professions of life. But the same community had distanced away from these fields and started believing that acquiring the knowledge of these fields is a blasphemy. In a letter to his close friend Nawab Mohsinul Mulk, he discussed the idea of Tahzeebul Akhlaq, a journal for the social reformation of Muslims of India. He returned to Banaras, after an absence of about 19 months, in October, 1870. On 24th December, Sir Syed launched “ Tahzibul Akhlaq”.
Objectives of Tahzibul Akhlaq:
1. Establishment of Social Harmony among the Muslims of India.
2. Revival of True Islamic Traditions
3. Remove the misconception of Islam from the masses in regards with modern developments
Tahzibul Akhlaq faced stiff resistance from the muslims of India but at the same time if found its well wishers also. Nawab Mohsinul Mulk, Maulvi Muhammad Chiragh Ali Khan, Maulvi Mushtaq Hussain, Maulana Altaf Hussain Haali, Shamsul Ulema Maulvi Zakaullah, Shamsul Ulema Allama Shibli Nomani, Maulvi Mehdi Hasan, Syed Mahmood and Sir Syed wrote many articles on social and religious reforms. Tahzeebul Akhlaq was trying to present the true picture of Islam. From the inception in 1870 till 1881, Tahzibul Akhlaq was discontinued twice and finally in 1881 it was merged with Aligarh Gazette.
Revival of Tahzibul Akhlaq:
After a century later, in 1981, a staunch supporter of Aligarh Movement and an AMU alumnus, Syed Hamid, the then Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University felt the need of Tahzeebul Akhlaq. He discussed the idea with few learned members of concerned of community and re-started Tahzeebul Akhlaq as a Bi-monthly private journal. A committee was formed.
Chief Editor: Mr. Syed Hamid (Vice-Chancellor, Aligarh Muslim University)
Editor: Mr. Qazi Moizuddin (Aligarh).
Treasurer: Dr. Manzar Abbas Naqvi (Dept. of Urdu, Aligarh Muslim University)
Mr. Syed Hamid put his best to bring back the past glory Tahzeebul Akhlaq, started by Sir Syed Ahmad Khan. In a short span of time, the journal became popular and made good inroads into the hearts and minds of Muslims and the intellectual community of Muslims of India. In 1983, Prof. Noorul Hasan Naqvi of Department of Urdu took over the charge of editorship of the journal. He engaged young research scholar Dr. Qamrul Huda Faridi as Honorary Assistant Editor for the journal. The journal was still not self sustainable so the team launched a Life membership drive for Rs.1000/- which received a good response and fetched a decent amount of money which was deposited into Bank as Fixed Deposit and the income generated from this fixed deposit made the journal self sustainable.
In April 1985, Syed Hashim Ali joined as Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University. Till then, Tahzeebul Akhlaq was a private entity. Upon the request of the Tahzeebul Akhlaq team, Aligarh Muslim University acquired Tahzeebul Akhlaq and allocated required administrative staff and building and made Aligarh Muslim University Vice-Chancellor as its Patron.