Son of Ayatollah Seyyed Mostafa Kashani, one of great Ulamas, Ayatollah AboulQassem Kashani was born in Tehran, 1848. At first he was tutored by his father, and then attended the courses of Ayatollah Molla Kazem Khorassani, Hajj Mirza Khalil, and Ayatollah Mirza Mohammad Taghi Shirazi. While sixteen he went to Mecca and on his way back, he sojourned in Iraq. He joined the Iraqi people in their struggle against the British at the outset of the First World War.
Following his father’s martyrdom, he remained for a period in Najaf and Kazemein, but as there was the risk of getting arrested, he fled to Iran, and was welcomed by Tehranis. He kept on teaching until 1941 and the occupation of Iran by the allies. He entered the Majlis from Tehran in 1943 but was soon arrested on the charge of cooperating with the Germans.
Again he was a Majlis member from Tehran in its sixteenth term. On his return from exile in Beirut, he became the religious leader of the movement for the nationalization of the oil industry and supported Dr. Mossaddeq who brought the bill for the nationalization of oil to Majlis.
On the occasion of Mossaddeq’s resignation and Qavam’s appointment as the prime minister, he strongly supported Mossaddeq and threatened to issue a religious decree against the Shah; as a result of this Qavam was removed.
Again, Ayatollah Kashani became the speaker of the seventeenth Majlis. Mossaddeq’s wish to get special authorities from Majlis created some disputes between the head of the cabinet and the speaker of the Majlis, which eventually led to the success of the Americans in carrying a coup against the Mossaddaq’s government. Ayatollah Kashani did not keep silent after the coup and opposed against major general Zahedi in his proclamations. He observed the eighteenth Majlis as an unlawful one and protested against the oil consortium.
A short while after the coup, Ayatollah Kashani became sick and actually left the political scene of the country. On the insistence of Amini then the prime minister, Mohammad Reza Shah attended his bedside to console him; but Ayatollah turned his back to the Shah and did nod receive him.
Ayatollah Kashani eventually died in March 11th 1961.