KARACHI - Presence of a Dai alMutlaq, spiritual leader of Dawoodi Bohra community in Karachi to observe Ashara (first 10 days of Muharram), after a lapse of 21 years, is definitely no mean feat for a city considered “not very safe” till recent past.

What makes Karachiites all the more excited is that Dr Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, the 53rd Dai alMutlaq city has also attracted thousands of his followers from across the globe to be part of the occasion in the metropolis.

Ashara, an annual religious ritual conducted during the first Islamic month, at all the places inhabited by members of the community, however, gain prominence with the presence of Dai alMutlaq as many of his followers make special effort to be in attendance with their spiritual leader.

Some 30,000 Dawoodi Bohra Community members from abroad having joined their fellows in Pakistan to mark the occasion emerge to be quite prominent in their peculiar garb manifesting diversity of the port city.

“Excitement is definitely in the air and so is the confidence that Karachi is gradually back to its roots and reputation of a lively and peaceful city,” said Mayor Karachi, Wasim Akhter. Talking to APP he said all possible assistance is being extended to the volunteers and Burhani Guard belonging to Karachi based community members to facilitate the guests.

Security, that presently does not fall under his domain, is also fool proof and is duly acknowledged by spokesman of the community Syed Murteza Abedali.

“We are grateful to the local as well as provincial government for their support and realizing its significance for the community,” he said. Dr Syedna Muffadal Saifuddin who has chosen Karachi to deliver his Muharram sermons has also been granted state guest status by the Sindh government.

The revered guest in the metropolis who arrived in Karachi last Thursday will continue to deliver his sermon till September 30 at the Tahiri Mosque in Saddar, with special arrangements to telecast live his sermons at the community centres scattered across the metropolis.

Syed Murteza Abedali with regard to themes of the sermons by Dr Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin said these are focused on justice, sacrifice, brotherhood, forgiveness, kindness and piety.

“Qualities that manifest themselves in the tragedy that befell Imam Hussain (RA) and his loved ones in Karbala, Iraq, which ultimately led to his martyrdom,” he elaborated mentioning that these principles are related by the leader to matters of contemporary relevance.

It was specifically mentioned that as per tradition processions are not carried out and relevant rituals are performed within the centres.