Muharram: Hyderabad Shia Muslim leaders still wait for police bandobust

Hyderabad Desk

Hyderabad: Leaders from the Shia community are worried as the city police has reportedly not yet made bandobust arrangements for Muharram (the first month of the Islamic calendar) which starts from July 7.

Members of the community, including caretakers of Ashurkhanas in the city have reportedly approached the authorities over the issue. During the month of Muharram, huge processions are held on the tenth day to mark the death of Imam Hussain, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, who was killed on that date in the year 680 CE.

“Every year, the Hyderabad police commissioner holds Muharram bandobast meetings with eminent members of Shia community and religious leaders. But this year no such meetings have been held,” said one of the community leaders who did not want to be quoted. He added the Telangana chief minister’s office has also been intimated of the issue to intervene and direct the concerned authorities to hold bandobast meetings.

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Various processions are held every year in the month of Muharram in Hyderabad’s Old City during the month of Muharram. The Bibi Ka Alam procession to the Charminar is one of the biggest ones that is held each year, and thousands of Shia Muslims participate in the procession.

It may be noted that one of Hyderabad’s oldest monuments is also a Shia Muslim monument.

The Badshahi Ashurkhana is the second structure built in Hyderabad after the city was founded by Mohd Quli Qutb Shah (fourth king of the Golconda dynasty) in 1591. The monument, which is a Shia Muslim mourning place, primarily used during Muharram, goes back to 1592. It is a very important heritage site given that it was built by the founding king himself, and it still continues to be in use.

An Ashurkhana is where Shia Muslims mourn during Ashura, the 10th of Muharram. The place is dedicated to Imam Hussain, a grandson of the prophet Muhammad who was killed in the battle of Karbala. Hussain was the son of Imam Ali, the prophet’s son-in-law (and cousin).

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