Bohras welcome Syedna Burhanuddin’s successor to Karachi

Published: September 14, 2012

Syedi Mufaddal Bhaisaheb Saifuddin. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: 

Unlike every event of importance, it was not a matter of the most opulent ridas for women and deeply embroidered saaya, kurtas, and pajamas for men of the Dawoodi Bohra community of Karachi, it was a matter of rushing to the mosque at top speed.

Syedi Mufaddal Bhaisaheb Saifuddin, designated successor to the 52nd Dai-el-Mutlaq, His Holiness Syedna Mohammad Burhanuddin, is visiting Karachi and it was the blessed fortune of the Clifton mosque that he led the Magrib and Isha prayers at Hassani Masjid.

For security reasons, the Bohra community was informed less than two hours before Magrib. I was expecting a Fort Knox – like situation before reaching the mosque, given the high-profile nature of the visiting dignitary, and though security had been tightened with the ubiquitous heavily armed police commandos, it was no where near the kind of security one would expect in such a situation, given how easy it was for anyone dressed like a Dawoodi Bohra to just walk in.

The attendance at the mosque was not limited to people from the neighbourhood, but from all over Pakistan, who have been staying in Karachi to be near his august presence. The minute the word was received that evening prayers were to be led my him, they came over in record time to enjoy the blessings of the event. Some people from Rawalpindi even came with charts and banners, requesting his presence in their city.

Syedi Mufaddal Bhaisaheb is the second son of Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin and was proclaimed as the successor to the office of Da’i al-Mutlaq of the Dawoodi Bohras last year.  This is the first time that the designated successor has visited Pakistan, home to the world’s second largest Dawoodi Bohra population, after India.

“We are all extremely excited to be here. Especially the children for whom this is the first deedar (get to see him in person),” said Insia Juzer, the mother of two young daughters who were hanging over the railings to catch a glimpse of the syedna. “It has been so long since our dai has visited us. We all want to see him and meet him, especially the children for whom he has just been a name on an adult’s lips or a face in the photos.”

Some members of the community were lucky enough to catch a glimpse of their religious leader earlier in the day as he drove out of his home slowly in an open jeep while Dawoodi Bohras lined the road on both sides to receive his blessings.

Syedi Mufaddal Bhaisaheb was driven into the mosque with a protocol of four police jeeps behind three motorcyclists who drove in a triangle formation, accompanied by an ambulance. The sheer ardour of the devotees was vented in a matam strong enough and loud to echo though out the masjid complex.

Syedi Mufaddal Bhaisaheb left soon after Isha and will be leading Fajr prayers on Friday (today) in another mosque in Karachi.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 14th, 2012.

Reader Comments (20)

  • Raw is War
    Sep 14, 2012 - 7:26AM

    are bohras tolerated in Pakistan? or their status is similar to Ahmedis? can somebody throw some light?

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  • Lord
    Sep 14, 2012 - 9:13AM

    Yes they are tolerated but if the same pattern continues the will be in line of these extremists.

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  • Huzaifa
    Sep 14, 2012 - 9:24AM

    Religious extremism in any form is sad to see,no matter which sect is involved.Rational thinking should be the cornerstone of life.

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  • Apple
    Sep 14, 2012 - 9:28AM

    Bohras & Aga Khanis are one of the most educated well-mannered and civilized communities.

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  • Omer
    Sep 14, 2012 - 10:22AM

    they are mostly in karachi, so nobody pinches them just like no body pinches ismailis in the city, and if you know any bohris they are gentle and nice people.

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  • Zeeshan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 11:45AM

    Atheist leaders and intellectuals should also get such media coverage.

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  • Sep 14, 2012 - 12:01PM

    Bohra are the best muslim community followed by Ahmadis.

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  • saleem
    Sep 14, 2012 - 1:07PM

    First visit by respected leader to visit the 2nd largest community of the Bohra community. This speaks of volume about the law and order situation here considering his permanent place of residence is India

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  • Sep 14, 2012 - 1:08PM

    @Apple:
    Bohras are very honest too. Good quality things you can buy from their shops and best of all they kicked the banking jobs.

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  • Donga Bonga
    Sep 14, 2012 - 1:18PM

    Where does he visit from?

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  • Afzaalkhan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 2:14PM

    Welcome your holiness may you have a great stay and blessing from ALLAH SWT

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  • Omer
    Sep 14, 2012 - 2:48PM

    Welcome Mr. Successor, hope you like it here!

    But was this a news story or a personal account of a very special personal/religious event?

    If it was a news story then we could have done without the floral touches and praises??

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  • Ravi
    Sep 14, 2012 - 5:11PM

    bohras where i live is financialy sound,disciplined ,peaceful and well mannered community.
    and they didnt involve in any antisocial events.
    till now i thought Bohras in india and ahmedis in pak r same.

    can any one plz explain who r ahmedis??????

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  • Khalq e Khuda
    Sep 14, 2012 - 6:26PM

    @Raw is War:

    Actually surprisingly Bohras are very much tolerated in Pakistan. Most hardline deobandis do not hold them in contempt they hold other muslim sects. It is mainly because Bohras are too conservative themselves.

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  • Waseem
    Sep 14, 2012 - 7:37PM

    @Zeeshan:
    Just for your info atheism is not a religion.

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  • Rajeev Nidumolu
    Sep 14, 2012 - 8:10PM

    There are several high profile controversies involving the extent of power exerted by the head of Bohra community in India. There has been a powerful reform movement which has been started and lead by noted Islamic scholar Asghar Ali Engineer, general secretary of the Central Board of the Dawoodi Bohra Community. This has resulted in schism in the community
    http://urdutahzeeb.net/articles/blog1.php?p=8217&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

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  • John
    Sep 14, 2012 - 8:17PM

    @Ravi,

    Bohras and Ahmadis are two different communities.

    Bohras adhere to Shia Islam; and thus tolerated all around the world, including Pakistan.

    While Ahmadis are neither Sunni or Shia, rather they believe in a Prophet after Rassulallah (SAW); hence the unfavourable view against them by many hardliners.

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  • Arjun
    Sep 15, 2012 - 2:53AM

    I have had good Bohra friends since school. I admire their community for how educated, well-mannered, and hard-working it is. If they ever face problems in Pakistan, they will be welcomed with open arms in India or anywhere else in the world for that matter, including the US.

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  • Huzaifa
    Sep 15, 2012 - 9:39PM

    Would have been better if the paper had assigned this story to another writer. Article seems to be written with a bit of bias and does not provide well researched and proper information.

    Anyway congratulations to Mumineen of Karachi. Our wish has come true. Now next wish is the presence of both Aqa Maula Mohammad Burhanuddin and Aali Qadr Muffadal Bhaisaheb Saifuddin together in Karachi.Recommend

  • Sep 17, 2012 - 6:22PM

    I, Muslim living in France (Europe), I’m proud of the chances of the Dawoodi Bohra Community living in Karachi in Syedi Aali Qadr Mufaddal Bhai Saheb Saifuddin’s visiting Karachi.Saifuddin Saheb (TUS) is the son of Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin (TUS), and grandson of Syedna Taher Saifuddin (RA). As his Father and Grand-Father, Syedi Aali Qadr Mufaddal Bhai Saheb Saifuddin (TUS) is teaching how to be faithfully involved in Brotherhood, to live honnestly, to observe piety according to the Farmaan-e-Ilaahi Quran-e-Majeed, the Hadith of Rasulullah (SAW), and the guidelines of Ahl-ul-Bayt (AS).

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