Asarulislam Mohammed Syed is a Pakistani American neurologist and psychiatrist in California. He is chief executive officer of Jannat Pakistan, a religious educational movement propagating Islam as Deen, a non-profit religious organization incorporated in the State of California. He is also Emir (spiritual leader) of Jannat Pakistan Party, a political party registered with the Election Commission of Pakistan, with head office in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.
Asarulislam Syed was born in Lahore on June 9, 1951. His Arab ancestors migrated from Bukhara, Uzbekistan and moved to Sialkot around 1185. His mother Dr. Zubaida Gilani-Saqlain and his father, Brigadier Habibus Saqlain Syed, were both physicians who had attained their medical education from King Edward Medical College Lahore. Both had served with the Pakistan Army Medical Corps.
Asarulislam attained kindergarten education at Burn Hall School, a Christian missionary school established in 1943, in Abbotabad. A few years later, his family moved to Sialkot, and he continued education at the Convent of Jesus and Mary, Sialkot. His grandfather Hafiz Mohammed Issac gave him home tutoring in Quran and Arabic.
In 1960, his parents moved to Dhaka, then East Pakistan where he attended the Adamjee School and learned to speak Bengali language fluently. In 1964 he entered Cadet College Hasan Abdal, a Military High School. where he excelled in academics, dramatics and debates and was accepted to King Edward Medical University, Lahore.
As a Cadet, Asarulislam was strongly influenced by the writings of Syed Abul Ala Maududi, and for a brief period became his follower. While a medical student, he formally studied the Quran at the Tolu-e-Islam Quranic Education Center in Lahore, Pakistan. He was a pupil of Pakistan’s Quran scholar and Quaid-e-Azam's political advisor, Ghulam Ahmed Pervez.
At Lahore, 1970–76, he pursued his extra-curricular interests in calligraphy, music and performing arts and nurtured a strong friendship with Syed Sadequain Ahmed Naqvi, Pakistan's world-renowned artist with whom he worked as a pupil, whom he considers as his mentor.
In 1977, he married Nayla Qamar, then a third year medical student at Fatima Jinnah Medical College Lahore. They have four children.
Following graduation, he worked as a Medical Officer at Polyclinic Hospital in Islamabad, and for a brief period in 1977-78 as Medical Officer to the National Assembly of Pakistan. He served as a lecturer in anatomy and neuroanatomy at Ayub Medical College Abbotabad. Both he and his wife worked for seven years as Medical Officers at a Military base in As Sulayyil a city in Riyadh Province, Saudi Arabia.
Subsequently they both attained their post-graduate education and training in Psychiatry and in Neurology respectively at the University of Kansas Medical Center. He served as Vice President of Midwest Behavioral Medicine Associates, from 1997 to 2001, incorporated in the State of Kansas and as Medical Director of Kaw Valley Children Center in Kansas City.
After moving to California in 2001, he and his wife joined State Civil Service, working for California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. He also provides services to indigent patients at medical clinics of National Health Services, Inc., a nonprofit corporation which operates thirteen sites in Kern County. A certified correctional health professional with National Commission on Correctional Health Care, he is Chief Psychiatrist with the State of California.
Asarulislam plays music and is a vocalist who regards singing, his self-soothe activity. Since 2001 he has been performing with a Bakersfield Pakistani music band Anarkali Sangeet. The band has performed nationwide in several cities providing musical and cultural entertainment to Pakistani American communities living in the United States. Through musical performances nationwide in the USA for various Pakistani community groups, Asarulislam propagates the liberal values of our civilization, imploring Muslims to join the human race, to give up bigotry, hatred and discrimination against the USA.
Through his music tours, Asarulislam interjects comical interludes to challenge and change the Muslim minds that are preoccupied with hateful and discriminatory Wahhabi cult beliefs being preached in the Islamic Centers throughout the United States. Anarkali Sangeet, as a cultural troupe, promotes liberal Pakistani-Islamic values and culture.
Earlier in Kansas City, he and his wife Nayla Syed were very active in promoting Pakistani culture and were founder members of Pakistani American Society of Greater Kansas City. Asarulislam has produced, organized and performed as a hobbyist stage actor in several plays including Shakespeare's Macbeth. He has also performed in a few Pakistan Television plays including some written by Pakistan's famous playwrights Bano Qudsia and Ashfaq Ahmed.
In the aftermath of September 11 attacks, in response to the speech of the President of the United States, "This is not Islam. They have hijacked Islam", Asarulislam conscientiously rose to speak on various public forums, boldly condemning terrorism and wrongful interpretation of the Quran. As a Quran Scholar, Asarulislam won strong appreciation from other Quranist Scholars including the celebrated Dr. Shabbir Ahmed (writer) who acknowledging his scholarship named him "Cannon of the Quran".
He delivered several enlightening speeches at various local University forums in Bakersfield, imploring millions of passive oppressed Pakistani Muslims and Christians to rise. Asarulislam Syed, MD was foremost amongst few Muslim Scholars that challenged the wrongful religious beliefs of The Taliban. Beginning in 2008, Dr. Asarulislam delivered weekly, one hour sermons through Shalimar Radio, Los Angeles. His radio sermons, based on reason, attracted a huge audience internationally.
In March 2011, Pakistanis inspired by Asarulislam's Quran lectures, activated and launched a political party, Jannat Pakistan Party, also known as JPP. Jannat Pakistan Party was founded in Rawalpindi, Pakistan on March 23, 2011 by Dr. Asarulislam. His weekly lectures on Shalimar Radio, aired between 2008 and 2010, activated the intellectuals and scholars scattered throughout the world.
On January 16, 2011, a foundation was laid to establish a new political party. Several Skype conferences, as a prelude to convene the International meetings were hosted by Abdus Salim Khanzada, a Pakistani from Saudi Arabia. The New-formed party will be engaged in 2013 Pakistani General Elections. Asarulislam bears dual citizenship of both countries, United States of America and Pakistan and under Pakistan’s dual citizenship law, being a US citizen precludes him from running for any political office in Pakistan.
Dr. Asarulislam Syed hosts Quran lectures on Shalimar Radio, a Los Angeles-based radio that is operated by Pakistani diaspora in United States. Lectures are aired every Saturday at noon and are archived and available on Quaid-e-Azam website as well as on iTunes.