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www.ismaili.net :: View topic - TAJIKISTAN & Central Asia Visit NEWS, EVENT and TESTIMO
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TAJIKISTAN & Central Asia Visit NEWS, EVENT and TESTIMO
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kmaherali



Joined: 27 Mar 2003
Posts: 9991

PostPosted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Update from theismaili.org

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Mawlana Hazar Imam addresses the Jamat during the Golden Jubilee Darbar in Porshinev. Photo: Akbar Hakim

Today, Mawlana Hazar Imam granted a second Golden Jubilee Darbar to the Jamat of Gorno-Badakhshan at Porshinev.

Many murids had travelled from neighbouring villages and some had camped through the night. By dawn, a gathering of over 100 000 awaited Mawlana Hazar Imam’s arrival.

During the Darbar, the Jamat presented Mawlana Hazar Imam with a traditional harp — a symbol of the ancient musical traditions of Central Asia. Afterwards, Hazar Imam departed Porshinev and travelled to Dushanbe.

In the afternoon, Mawlana Hazar Imam and President Emomali Rahmon held a final meeting in the airport VIP terminal, before Hazar Imam’s departure from Tajikistan. The President presented Mawlana Hazar Imam with a gift of ceremonial Tajik garments. Then, in an unprecedented gesture of friendship, the President accompanied Mawlana Hazar Imam to his aircraft and personally bid him farewell.

From Dushanbe, Mawlana Hazar Imam travelled to the Kyrgyz Republic for the third leg of his Golden Jubilee visit to Central Asia. Arriving in the evening at Manas International Airport near the capital city of Bishkek, Mawlana Hazar Imam was greeted with a traditional Kyrgyz welcome.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ednan Karabaev, received Mawlana Hazar Imam on behalf of the government. Senior government officials and AKDN leaders were also present to welcome Hazar Imam.

Mawlana Hazar Imam then met with the Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan, His Excellency Igor Chudinov, who hosted him at dinner.

Additional photos are available in the Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan galleries. Further details on Mawlana Hazar Imam’s visit to Central Asia will continue to be posted at TheIsmaili.org.

http://www.theismaili.org/?id=563
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Indigo



Joined: 04 Jun 2008
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel honoured and priviledged to share with all the experiences of myself and my family in Tajikistan for our loving Moulla's Golden Jubilee celebration in this special part of the world.
The whole trip had an ethereal, dream-like quality to it. The disappointment of cancellation of darbar in Dushanbe (for political reasons) was well offset by our loving Moulla. We saw Moulla at various places in Dushanbe, six times over a two-day period. Each time as Moulla's motorcade past, Moulla would put down his window, lean out despite the bitter cold and smile and wave with both hands at His murids, including ourselves, who lined the streets in large numbers, waving the My Flag and the national flag of Tajikistan. Imagine how much Moulla loves His murids. He knew they would not be able to see Him properly through the tinted glass of His window and so each time He put down His window. All we can say is Shukrana from our hearts. All the streets through which Moulla's motorcade would pass had been festooned with colourful banners of Welcome to Moulla written in the Tajik/Russian and English. Many of the Tajik Ismailis waited patiently on the streets for Moulla's motorcade to pass. I was touched to learn that many of them were students and most of them could not afford to go for the darbars in Badakshan. But they were very happy and said that these glimpses of Moulla as His car passed were deedar for them. How humble and Imani they are! We all need to learn a lesson from them.
And now came the challenge of travelling to Badakshan for the darbars in Ishkhashim (4th Nov) and Khorog (5th Nov). Due to cloudy weather flights to Khorog had been cancelled and cars were in great demand with prices rocketing daily and hourly. I know of a group who actually paid over 300USD per person to be driven upto Khorog and back. My family and I were extremely fortunate to obtain a lift from a Tajik ismaili man and his daughter who were driving upto Khorog for the darbars and who had place in his car for us. We were totally blown away by their hospitality. First of all, he took us to his home in Dushanbe and asked his wife to cook Pilov (scented rice with meat) specially for us. We objected but the y would hear none of it. After the delicious meal, they showed us pictures of Moulla taken during His previous visits to Tajikistan. They didnt seem to have any other (recent) photos of Mawlana Hazir Imam so we promised to send them some. We also gave them the movie of Mawlana Hazir Imam's Golden Jubilee Visit to East Africa. They were so excited and happy, it was amazing. I was struck by their simple house & way of living. It was indeed very refreshing. We were then given pillows and blankets to rest before setting off and were warned about lack of washrooms on the way so that we could use their facilities and prepare ourselves well to endure the loooong ride. He was indeed a very good driver and although the road was rough we hardly notices, so engrossed were we in the beautiful scenario of the Pamir mountains, valleys, canyons and the shimmering waters of the River Panj that we passed along the way. The scenaries looked like they had been painted on. Truly breathtaking. We arrived in on the outskirts of Khorog & found the road blocked because Moulla was just about to step out of the Khorog Serena Inn on His way to the Ismaili Centre. How lucky was that. We immediately stood alongside the Tajik ismailis who had gathered in large numbers. The volunteers who noticed we were guests kindly took us right to the front at the fence of the hotel, through which we would have a clear view of Mowlana Hazir Imam's exit from the hotel into His waiting Landcruiser. This was yet another example of Tajik hospitality and respect for their ismaili brethren from abroad. Mawlana Hazir Imam came out, looked, smiled and waved at all of us. The crowd burst into applause and loud chantings of the salwat. Mawlana Hazir Imam then put His hand to His heart and smiled. As His motorcade left the compound Mawlana Hazir Imam once again put His window down, leaned out slightly and kept on waving at the gathered ismailis. What a beautiful and poignant moment this was, easpecially for us, having just arrived at the opportune moment. I felt like Pirs must have felt when after travelling for days on end through arduous conditions, they finally arrived in Moulla's huzur. We steadfastly decided to stay at the Inn until Mawlana Hazir Imam's return and once again received His deedar upon His return two hours later. How dashing He looked in His overcoat and what a beautiful smile he wore. We were so happy to note He looked healthy, happy and glowing with the cold bringing out warm colour on his cheeks. It was heavenly to see our magnificent Mawlana Hazir Imam smiling against a backdrop of majestic scenary. We then set of for Khorog city. All the streets had been lined with buckets of flowers. This was a unique touch. There were also banners, balloons and the houses had been adorned with colourful lights. I was also amazed to see a huge welcome sign with a beautiful illuminated drawing of the Taj on the face of the mountains overlooking Khorog. As we enter the town we could hear festive music at different junctures, with loud sounds of merry-making. Our ismaili host told us this was all happiness due to the deedar and Mawlana Hazir Imam's presence in Khorog. He then took us to his brother's house where once again we were welcomed very warmly and fed with meat, potatoes, their traditional kulchaa (bread), nuts, sweets, chocolates and hot green tea. The washroom facilities here were also very good and once again we were told to rest for a few hours before leaving for Ishkhashim. Upon reaching the darbar site, we were taken by volunteers to the very front row right opposite the stage because we were guests. At that time I felt deeply ashamed because in my country, guests were given places at the rear of the darbar hall. The Ishkhashim Deedar was truly memorable. A crowd of about 40000 had gathers with an extra 8000-10000 Afghan ismailis standing on the mountain side across the river. Mawlana Hazir Imam's helicopter arrived at 11 15am and Moulla himself entered the darbar hall at 11 35am. The sun was shining brightly, the sky was azulian blue and th gathering was quiet and disciplined. As Mawlana Hazir Imam walked down the runners the chants of salwat echoed around, right upto His arrival on stage. We bowed down with gratitude as this was a place we could only dream of ever being given, with our loving Moulla sitting only metres away from us. So close were we that we could hear every word being spoken on stage by Moulla and by Mukhisaheb, and we could see every ecpression on our Moulla's countenenance. After the recitation of the Holy Quran, its translations in both Tajik and English, the recitation of Qasida by little children, the council president's loyalty address both in tajik and English, our loving Moulla's irshad mubarak in English and its translation in Tajik, the offering of nazrana of knowledge and time and of a tambur (a sitar-like musical instrument), Moulla once again came to the mic and acknowledged the gift and gave blessings to all for the fulfillment of wishes and he then said that the beautiful sunshine that we have today should remain permanently in our hearts. Mawlana Hazir Imam then left the stage and once again wallked down the runners through the jamat. As He arrived at the exit, He stopped turned around and nodded at two ismailis who were on their knees waving at Moulla. Moulla once again nodded at them and put His hand to His heart. And then exited the mandap. I later on came to know the two ismailis, a lady and a gentleman, were from Kenya. Mawlana Hazir Imam motorcade then took Him to the back of the mandap to the edge of the river. Mowla exited the car and waved at the Afghan ismailis who had assembled across the river. This brought to mind a sentence from the beginning of Mawlana Hazir Imam's irshad mubarak in which He said, "The love of the Imam for His murids knows no physical boundaries, no mountain, no river, no desert can stop the Imam's love from reaching His murid". Alhamdulliah!! I have never heard such a touching description before of Mawlana Hazir Imam's love for His murids. Moulla then took off for Khorog and as His helicopted ascended we could see Moulla's hand still waving at the crowd. Thereafter our kind host drove us back to Khorog to his brother's house. After a simple repast we were given gifts of colourful Pamir topis and socks. Then he found for us a ride back to Dushanbe in an AKDN vehicle that was going back to pick a canadian professor who was arriving at the airport the next day. We thanked our hosts for the wonderful hospitality and wished them a wonderful deedar the next day in Porshinev. We left with heavy hearts because we could not attend the darbar there the next day as we had a flight to Sharjah which operates only once a week. All the way to Dushanbe we were feeling sad and prayed for forgiveness to Moulla for missing the second darbar. Just as we reached Dushanbe Hotel at 3pm on 5th November we heard loud sirens and whistles on the street. Something made us abandon our bags on the sidewalk and rush to the edge of the curb opposite the construction site of Serena Hotel. One minute later our loving Moulla motorcade passed. We started jumping up and down excitedly, we were so amazed that we almost went on the road. Mawlana Hazir Imam's car slowed down, He put His window down and then He leaned out and waved and smiled at each and every one of us! MY GOD! What a treat!!!! All the sadness evaporated from our hearts. We went dancing and singing into the lobby of our hotel. All passers-by were staring at us but we could not just not contain ourselves. The AKDN driver and his colleague were so amazed, they congratulated us warmly and expressed what a miracle this was. They knew about our sadness on the way and were now very happy for us. We then left Dushanbe later that evening, our hears singing with joy and happiness and basking in the love Moulla showed us throughout this enchanting visit. We have never seen Him put down His window, lean out and wave from His car. And this touching gesture of His has boosted our faith and made it even stronger.
I would be failing in my duty if I did not thank AKDN for organising such a wonderful reception for us in the executive lounge at the airport upon our arrival in Dushanbe. I would also like to express my admiration for the people of Khorog for the way in which they welcomed Moulla to Khorog by having girls shower the red carpet with petals of flowers. Once again, thanks to all Tajik ismailis for their wonderful hospitality and big and generous hearts. Above all, thanks to our most loving Mawlana Hazir Imam who made all this possible. SHUKRAN LILLAH WAL HAMDULILLAH a countless times to our most loving, most beloved Moulla!!!
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malik.merchant



Joined: 17 Aug 2004
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Indigo,

Thank you for such a wonderful account of the Didar in Tajikistan.

I hope your account gets widely distributed and that you post it in ismailimail as well. It is truly inspiring.

Malik Merchant
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Admin



Joined: 06 Jan 2003
Posts: 2594

PostPosted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As Received

dear all
mubaraki mubaraki mubaraki
it is still freezing cold hazer imam did come. Thousands of murids gethered on both sides of the road in cold from 5 am in the morning with children and aged, almost ten people depth.

Hazer Imam arrived at 10 am at the site looked extremy happy. Farouk and Hadi Khan took him round and his mind was outside on the road where murids were chanting salwats so louldly that we thought the clouds will fall down ! as i said imam turned around and said MY POOR JAMAT !
this happened 3 times

on his way out hadi khan mentioned all this staff work extra hard, again he kept on smiling looked at each one of us and said yes it shows in the work ! inshallah i will be back to open it in march ! so you see we will have to work extra eextra hard to fulfil his desire of all the didars i think this was out of the world ! he kept on looking in the eyes all the time
was thinking about all of you shukhar !

your tasbis must be very very powerful thank you

love ali
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sanjana



Joined: 09 Nov 2008
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 12:51 am    Post subject: YAM Reply with quote

Thanks a lot for every one for such a beautifull stories and information that till now you were posting here. That will be very great of you if you will post more stories here about Tajikistan darbar, so that we, who are far away from TAjikistan and could not attand the Darbar there, would know how was the Didar with our beloved Imam. Thanks

Love and regards
Sanjana
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kmaherali



Joined: 27 Mar 2003
Posts: 9991

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Updates from theismaili.org

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Mawlana Hazar Imam, Prime Minister Chudinov and other UCA and government officials receive a warm welcome from students at the University’s town campus in Naryn. Photo: Gary Otte

This morning, Mawlana Hazar Imam met with the Kyrgyz Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ednan Karabaev. Following their meeting, Mawlana Hazar Imam travelled to Manas International Airport where he was joined by Prime Minister Igor Chudinov. The Prime Minister then accompanied Hazar Imam on a flight to Naryn, the town in which the Kyrgyz campus of the University of Central Asia (UCA) is situated.

In the shadow of the Tian Shan mountain peaks overlooking Naryn, Kyrgyz horsemen galloped across the runway, as the aircraft carrying Mawlana Hazar Imam and Prime Minister Chudinov touched down. The Governor of Naryn Oblast, Omurbek Suvanaliev and the Mayor of Naryn, Almaz Kulmatov were on hand to welcome them.

Hundreds of students of UCA's School of Professional and Continuing Education (SPCE) waved Kyrgyz and Ismaili flags, as the dignitaries strode across the green that the University has gifted to the town. After reviewing the construction site of the town campus building, Mawlana Hazar Imam and the Prime Minister met teachers and students of the SPCE's English in the Villages Programme.

Following lunch, architects, UCA management staff and civic officials accompanied the Prime Minister and Mawlana Hazar Imam to viewing points along the proposed main campus site overlooking a dramatic rock face across the Naryn River.

Later in the day, Mawlana Hazar Imam returned to Bishkek, where he called on the Speaker of Kyrgyz Parliament, Aitibay Tagayev, at the Parliament building.

Additional photos are available in the Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan galleries. Further details on Mawlana Hazar Imam’s visit to Central Asia will continue to be posted at TheIsmaili.org.

http://www.theismaili.org/?id=563

Friday, 7 November 2008

The AKDN Resident Representative in the Kyrgyz Republic, Nurjehan Mawani, bids farewell to Mawlana Hazar Imam at Manas International Airport. Photo: Gary Otte

On the final day of his visit to the Kyrgyz Republic, Mawlana Hazar Imam undertook a busy agenda of activities prior to his mid-morning departure.

Hazar Imam reviewed full-scale models of the facilities that will make up the three future campuses of the University of Central Asia. The models included replicas of undergraduate and graduate dormitory rooms, faculty offices and classrooms.

Afterwards, Mawlana Hazar Imam met with the Mayor of Bishkek, Nariman Tuleyev. Their meeting was held in a yurt — a dwelling structure that was traditionally used by nomadic peoples in the steppes of Central Asia.

At Manas International Airport, as Mawlana Hazar Imam prepared to depart Kyrgyzstan, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ednan Karabaev and AKDN leaders were present to bid him farewell. Hazar Imam’s departure from the country marked the end of his Golden Jubilee visit to Central Asia.

Additional photos are available in the Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan galleries. Further details on Mawlana Hazar Imam’s visit to Central Asia will continue to be posted at TheIsmaili.org.
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kmaherali



Joined: 27 Mar 2003
Posts: 9991

PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amongst the group we were with was a guy who had come from Canada who had met and married a local Pamiri. Their story was fascinating, as he described how he had bumped into her multiple times while he was visiting the region for work-related reasons. As interesting as the story was, though, what was even more fascinating was the wife’s story of her experience preparing for a visit of the Aga Khan in October 2008 and the instances of perseverance and hilarity that ensued therein. (Pamiris are predominantly Nizari Ismaili Muslims, who see Aga Khan IV as their spiritual guide.) Her stories, combined with that of many others, show a degree of love and devotion that one scarcely hears.

For the sake of time, I will try my best to briefly convey two such stories I have heard while here:

Originally, the Aga Khan was suppose to visit both Dushanbe and Khorog, though for some reason, the first visit did not pan out. For the thousands of Pamiri Ismailis living in Khorog, this was obviously an incredible disappointment. But, seeing as how a fair number of them had relatives or immediate family in Khorog (and seeing as how Khorog is generally a VERY accommodating place anyways), many of those who were able to afford to headed to Khorog via rented vehicles. And so it goes that one Pamiri went to speak with her professor to inform her that she was “feeling sick” so that she could get an excused absence from class. Upon relaying the ailment to the professor, he calmly informed her that for some odd reason, many of his Pamiri students had fallen ill and not to worry, as he was sure that a trip to GBAO for a few days to see the Aga Khan would certainly make her feel better…

Another story that had been relayed to me described a series of coincidences and awe-inspiring moments. Upon finding out of the visit being canceled in Dushanbe, one couple I spoke with was particularly saddened; on account of their jobs, they would be unable to take the time out to visit Ishkashim, the location of the Darbar visit (close to Khorog). Luckily, though, both of them were able to take leave from their offices due to a streak of luck. Unluckily, they could not find a car to take them to Khorog (since the drive requires a 4x4 across the rocky terrain). This changed just a couple of days before the visit would happen in Khorog, and they were able to hitch a (overcrowded) ride with an acquaintance. After roughing out a bumpy and dangerous 16+ hour journey, they arrived in Khorog and immediately began heading to the site of the visit in Ishkashim (running on very little sleep). Seeing as how all of the vehicles in the village had already been booked, they began this considerable journey on foot. I should mention here that GBAO in October is no joke; being in the mountains, the area gets very cold, very fast at night...so you can imagine the difficulty in trekking the terrain during this time. After travelling for multiple hours by foot, the couple, accompanied by extended family, reached the site of the visit at pitch-dark nightfall, where they would spend the next couple of hours waiting for the much anticipated visit. Taking turns sharing a single blanket amongst a large number of family members, they waited in anticipation throughout the night. Before long, they heard and saw a chopper crossing the horizon that was bringing the Aga Khan to the site. And as the chopper approached, it seemed to bring with it the sun, yawning awake as it parted the clouds and shooed away the darkness. With the sun shinning overhead and the cold slowly receding, the Pamiris waited in anticipation as the heli slowly came to land and the Aga Khan prepared to deliver his guidance after a far-too-long 10 years...

Forgiving my relatively poor retelling of those stories, there were many other such stories (running the gamut from emotional to hilarious) describing hardships to get to the location of the visit and the pursuant contentment that resulted from the visit (and the message/guidance associated with the visit). I hope to hear more of these stories in the coming weeks.

http://bigzabroad.blogspot.com/2009/09/catching-up-pt-ii-damn-good-weekend.html
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Rowonsadbarg



Joined: 10 Aug 2009
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 11:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With Mawla's grace I was very lucky that my annual leave from work coincided with Deedar time in Khorog and I planned to go home, to Badakhshan, with my wife and son for Deedar. When there we heard that Deedar in Dushanbe was cancelled, we were all saddened for those who were looking forward for it and could not make it to travel to the Pamir.
In few days after Deedar we came back to Dushanbe and got their by midnight. We got off the Pamir-Dushanbe taxi and took another taxi to drop us home. The Sunni taxi driver was telling us about how recently most of the Pamiries left Dushanbe. ‘The Dushanbe-Pamir taxi prices went up in times, but people still went” he said. “May be this is for the humanitarian aid Agha Khan gave them after the War…. (?)” he was wondering.
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