Hadrat had first met Maulānā Maudūdī on a journey to Lahore. He had been reading his articles since 1934-1935. Hadhrat writes in this regard:
The basis of my interest and inclination to the Maulānā’s writings and his Jamā‛at were those distinguished articles which he wrote against Western civilization, its philosophy of life, and its materialistic outlook.
The Maulānā came to Lucknow in 1941 and stayed over at the Dār al-‛Ulūm guesthouse. During the same period, Hadrat rahimahullāh became a formal member of the movement which was initiated by Maulānā Muhammad Manzūr Nu‛mānī Sāhib rahimahullāh and was appointed as the person in charge for the Lucknow area. The Maulānā came to Lucknow a second time and, acting under the request of Hadrat rahimahullāh, he read a paper at the Dār al-‛Ulūm on the topic A New System of Education.
Hadrat travelled to Lahore in 1942 to attend the working committee meeting of the Jamā‛at. Also in the same year, a working committee meeting was held in Delhi which Hadrat attended. From Delhi, Hadrat accompanied the Maulānā to ‛Alīgarh and remained with him for one or two days. Hadrat writes in this regard:
I gauged the Maulānā’s popularity in the university environment. It was a reflection of the conditions of that time, the mental confusion of Muslim youth, and their spiritual thirst.
Hadrat remained attached to the Jamā‛at for about three years. He writes:
During this period, three perceptions developed within me. These compelled me to re-think and re-examine my affiliation with the Jamā‛at.
1. I noticed members of the Jamā‛at developing a fanatical and extremist mindset with regard to the personality of the Maulānā. They were becoming more and more distant from having noble thoughts about any other thinker, author and propagator; from having confidence in him and benefiting from his writings.
2. The element of criticism was increasing in them, and they were becoming audacious towards other ‛ulamā’ and religious circles.
3. I did not see in them any religious progress, enthusiasm to increase in good actions, no interest in rectification of the self, and no sound effort in trying to develop a bond with Allāh Ta‛ālā.
Note: We learn from this that if these three elements are found in any group or organization, then every perceptive person will have to rethink his affiliation with such a group or organization. If not, it will be classified as deceit. We seek refuge in Allāh ta‛ālā. (compiler)
Hadrat writes further: My meetings with Maulānā Ilyās Sāhib rahimahullāh increased my impressions about him because his temperament was closest to the temperament of Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‛alayhi wa sallam, the life of Rasūlullāh sallallāhu ‛alayhi wa sallam, and the spirit of inviting towards Islam. This caused my mental conflict to increase to the extent that I informed Maulānā Maudūdī about it who then advised me to remain aloof from him.
Taken from MAULĀNĀ ABUL HASAN ‛ALĪ HASANĪ NADWĪ – HIS LIFE AND CONTRIBUTIONS compiled by his student Maulānā Muhammad Qamar az-Zamān Sāhib Allāhābādī db.