Note: This is to show the position of the Akabir on the issue, not to start a debate or dwell into the issue in any detail at all. We try and avoid fitna and remain speaking the truth.
Qutb al Din Maulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi said in his Fatawa Rashidiyyah (Pg: 248, Dar al Isha`at 2003) when asked whether Sayyidina Mansur was a wali:
“According to me he was a wali…“
Sayyidina Mansur (Allah have mercy on him) stated, as narrated in Imam Qushayri’s Risala:
“He is clearly separate from them (His creation) by His pre-existence (bayanahum biqidamih) just as they are clearly separate from Him by their contingent nature.”
“and His tawhid is to distinguish Him clearly from His creatures.”
“Or how can that be part of Him which He Himself gave rise to? (aw ya‘udu ilayhi ma huwa ansha’ahu).”
This makes clear his belief regarding aspects such as hulul (indwelling), and that his utterance of the phrase “ana al haqq” was either in an unconcious and emotionally involuntary state or held a different meaning than what people claimed. This is what our master and guide, the arch-helper and pole of the Muslims of his time, Hakim al Ummah Maulana Ashraf `Ali Thanawi (May Allah sanctify his secret) stated in many of his works. This is the position of the Deobandi scholars that all Deobandi laymen should be aware of. There were many other scholars of great repute before Deoband who said the same such as Ibn `Aqil, Ibn Khafif, Ibn Ata’illah, Ibn Qudama, Munawi, Imam Qushayri and so forth.
Those who are skeptical, remember the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said:
“The one who is silent is saved.”
Blessings on the Prophet, his family, and his companions.