Short biography of Hazrat Bilal RaḍyAllāhu ‘Anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him)
Hazrat Bilal (Razi Allah Tala Anhu) was a tall Abyssinian slave owned by the Quarsihite chief Umayyah bin Khalaf. He converted to Islam in the early Makkan era, when the persecutions against the Muslims had begun. It is believed that he was the second adult Muslim male after Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique (Razi Allah Tala Anhu) to convert to Islam.
He was severely tortured by his master, Umayyah bin Khalaf, who used to tie him down on the hot desert sand and place heavy heated boulders on his chest. However, he remained absolutely steadfast.
Finally, Hazrat Bilal RA was freed by the first caliph of Islam Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique RaḍyAllāhu ‘anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him), who purchased him for the cause of Islam. Until the Holy Prophet sallalahu ‘alayhi wa salam ﷺ passed away, he remained his voluntary servant.
When Hazrat Bilal RaḍyAllāhu ‘anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) migrated to Madinah, the Holy Prophet made a bond of brotherhood between him and the Ansari companion, Abu Ruwaihar.
When the Azan was introduced, the Holy Prophet RaḍyAllāhu ‘anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) chose Hazrat Bilal RA for the honour. Thus he became the first Muezzin (one who proclaims the Azan) of Islam. He also delivered the Azan from the roof of the Ka’aba in February 629, when the Holy Prophet paid a three-day visit to Makkah to perform Umra. He remained Muezzin until the second caliph of Islam Caliphate Hazrat Umar RaḍyAllāhu ‘anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him).