Hadhrat Maulana Yusuf Motala, may Allah preserve and protect him, related:
When in Makkah al-Mukarramah, Hadhrat Shaykh al-Hadith Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya (ra) would perform tawaf (circumbulation of the Ka’bah) after the ‘Isha salah. It was his habit that after performance of the ‘Isha salah and the fulifillment of any necessities, he would perform six, seven, or sometimes even eight tawafs.
Coincidentally, once, General Zia-ul-Haq of Pakistan was in the blessed city of Makkah at the same as Hadhrat Shaykh Zakariyya (ra).
Whilst performing tawaf, the General saw a saintly person in a wheelchair performing tawaf, with twenty to thirty disciples and attendants following. He asked his companions who this saintly person was. He was told that it was Hadhrat Shaykh al-Hadith Maulana Muhammad Zakariyya (ra).
The General sent a Messenger to Hadhrat Shaykh Zakariyya (ra) in order to request a meeting. At the time, Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) had just finished a tawaf. The messenger asked Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) if he would meet the General, upon which Hadhrat Shaykh replied that he still had a few tawafs to perform. He informed him that the General should come to this same place once Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) had completed all his tawafs.
Once Hadhrat Shaykh had completed his tawafs, the General came to meet him. After greeting each other with salam and exchanging pleasantries, Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) became silent. Hadhrat Maulana Yusuf sahib explained that this was Hadhrat Shaykh’s (ra) habit. His Majalis (gatherings) were usually silent and he only spoke when necessary. The General requested Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) to give him some beneficial advice. To this, Hadhrat Shaykh (ra) uttered just one sentence,
”Do not oppress anyone.”
Note: This story should not be taken as a direct quote of Hadhrat Maulana Yusuf Motala sahib, may Allah preserve and protect him. I have paraphrased his words. This was done from memory, and therefore, if anyone who has also heard this story from Hadhrat Maulana Yusuf sahib notices any inaccuracies, please do not hesitate to correct me.