Initially Moulana Ibraheem Siyalkoti (who was formerly an Ahle Hadith) had an ill-opinion of Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh). Thereafter he began to have a lot of respect for Imaam Saheb. Moulana Ibrahim Siyalkoti writes about himself in his book Tareekhe Ahle Hadith:
“When looking for some mas’alah I went through the books on the shelf. I started checking up the view-point of Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh). After going through different books some reservation settled in my heart regarding Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh).
The effects of evil thoughts within me could be felt around me. It was broad daylight, yet I felt darkness enveloping me. The blackness was thick and compound which was similar to what the Ayat says: Darkness one over the other.” At the same time, Allah Ta’ala inspired my heart that this is the outcome of your ill-feelings for Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh)! Repent for your wrong!” Moulana Ibraheem continues: I started reading the words of istighfaar and immediately the darkness disappeared. In fact, it was replaced with such brightness which outshone the daylight. From then onwards my respect and confidence for Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh) continued to grow. I say to those who (don’t listen to me and) continue reviling Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh), my example with you is the very same which Allah Ta’ala had said to the ones who denied the incident of Me’raj.
افتمارونه على ما يرى
So will you doubt that which he was shown (Surah Najam 53:12)
Hence it is futile for anyone to argue with me regarding something I witnessed in a wakeful state while I was in my senses.” (Iktilaaf-e-ummat and siraat-e-mustaqeem 2/49)
Moulana Ibraheem Siyalkoti prepared his book Tareekhe Ahle Hadith in which he wrote some history of the seniors of the Ahle Hadith as well as some of the history of the previous Muhadditheen. The book includes Imaam Abu Hanifa (Rahmatullahi Alayh) amongst the previous senior Muhadditheen. The All-India Ahle Hadith Conference of Delhi was impressed with the book and wished to distribute copies of it. They had one reservation: The name of Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh) amongst the Muhadditheen!? They asked Moulana Ibraheem to de-list Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh) and publish it (without the section of Abu Hanifa (Rahmatullahi Alayh)). Moulana replied by saying that the name of Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullahi Alayh) can never be alienated from the fraternity of the Muhadditheen. (Athaarul Hadith 2/394)