Saturday, January 30, 2010

Sandal of Maulana Baba at Bandra Bazar Road

114,532 items / 744,052 views

Had I not gone down when I heard the blasts of drums beneath my house , I wouuld have missed shooting these pictures , so there is a karmic connection pre destined to what you shoot and what you dont get to shoot...

Marziya was the one who wanted to watch the happenings from the window of our house , and you cant see clearly due to the overgrowth of branches and trees..I thought it ia a wedding, so when I came down with my camera and Marziya on my waist it turned out to be a sandal procession ..and the few guys involved with the sandal knew me , this was a huge sandal and shooting it was pretty tough ,there was a horse buggy with kids a huge bullock cart and the huge elaborate chaddars..

When the sandal moved towards the Bazar I let it go, and returned home..

All night my uploading problems continued , messages to You Telecom is water on a ducks ass, there techie came but the problem as of date remains unresolved .

Luckily these are my last few pictures I have no back log..yes You Telecom sucks..

Friday, January 29, 2010

Faith Can Move Mountains too as it Moves You And Me

The first time I came here at the Chand Shah Wali Dhuni , it was at the invitation of Late Sikandar Wali Baba head of the Dhuni and the Chand Shah Wali Rafaees , but who held court during the Makhdoom Shah Baba Urus at Mahim , their dhuni was behind the Mahim Shrine, I was introduced to Sikandar Wali Baba by Fahad Khalil Pathan son of the late Peshimam of Makhdoom Shah Baba Mosque.

It was a fascinating moment I began documenting the Rafaees body piercers , with a lot of stiff opposition from some of the members who did not want their pictures taken that , their rituals expose, specially the smoking of drugs a core aspect of the rafaees and their hangar-ons at the Dhuni.

After the Makhdoom Shah Baba Urus got over the Chand Shah Wali rafaees or as I call them Chancawalli rafaees moved their Dhuni to the smaller also popular Dargah of Baba Fakhr or Fakhruddin Shah Baba,once this Urus got over , and in the life time of late Sikandar Wali Baba the Rafees again parked themselves at Parel at Ismail Shah Baba , they dont sit at the Ismail Shah Baba Dhuni after Sikandar Waklli Babas death, and it continued in a nomadic fashion , till they completed their Urus rounds, and it was only because of late Sikandar Wali Baba I climbed the Haji Malang mountains and discovered the Hijra paradise that I have been shooting non stop for several years.
It was here that Laxmi Narayan Tripathi became my Hijra Guru..and I shot her with a divine passion , I shoot Laxmi like no photographer does , I shoot her from my soul as a poet per se..

After the Haji Malang Urus in 2005 I visited the Ajmer Sharif Urus , the first time in my life so it has been over 6 long years following the rafaees fakirs of this exotic community ..some belong to the Chistiya order or some to the Qadri order.


It was at Ajmer Sharif I met Peersaab Fakhru Miya of Hujra no 6 and I try to visit this Holy Place year after year in spite of financial constrains and other difficulties I am faced with when the Urus at Ajmer starts ,but I overcome it all , changing various trains , walking on foot , breaking journey I do reach Ajmer in the humility of a blogger beggar of Mumbai..

But Ajmer Sharif is the mother of all Urus for these poor mendicants and body piercers.


There was an incident that stopped my visiting the Chand Shah Wali Dargah completely it happened during my first visit when Sikandar Wali Baba was alive , I was shooting Indore Wale Baba a follower of the Fourth Shia Imam , Zainul Abeddin, Baba has permanently placed irremovable chains on his arms and legs , a total of 160 kgs, and Baba and I got along because I too wear kadas on my feet and I walk barefeet..

While I was shooting this Bawa in chains one of the custodians or trustee of this Dargah , accosted the Bawa placing Rs 40 on his face asked me t take a shot I refused.
He was mad at me and dared me to come to the Dargah again , as he was a big shot even Sikandar Wali Baba told me to remain quite , I walked away from the Dhuni , as I was about to leave Zanjir Bawa came up to me and apologized on behalf of the big shot trustee , I put my hands in my pocket to remove some money and was shocked it was Rs 40 that I willingly gave to Zanjirwale Bawa ..the same amount the big shot trustee wanted to give him , but did not give it to him as I did not shoot the picture.

Since that day I never came to Chan Shah Wali Dargah, and here I was bought once again by Sakib my florist friend for the Chancawalli Urus 2010

So Zanjirwale Bawa and I became the best of buddies , and he waits for me at all the major Urus , and he will be waiting for me at Haji Malang too, I have delayed my trip due to work commitments.

And dont ask me how Zanjirwale Bawa with 160 kg excess weight climbs the 7 km rough terrain barefeet and with chains on his arms and legs.

Yes Faith can move Mountains as it moves you and me through a single picture..embedded in the soul of a Blog.

Kids Dont Need Cameras When They Shoot Photographers

Chancawalli Urus 2010

I start a new set at my Flickr photostream,the Chancawalli Urus 2010..
The Chancawalli Dargah houses the revered tomb of Baba Haji Syed Usman Shah Qadri alias Chand Shah Baba Vihar lake Road , Pachkauli..Piru Baugh Mumbai..you reach there via Powai ..
I came here in the night along with my dear friend Sakib on his bike , we had a great problem finding the Dargah because Sakib forgot the road ..

We reached there eventually , and this was my second trip, last I had come here many years back when Sikandar Wali Baba the head of the Chancawali Rafaees was alive..

I have documented the life style of the rafaee Sufi body piercers or mendicants or fakirs..they have a Dhuni here and Chancawalli Dargah is on a huge Muslim Sunni cemetery..It is a very serene place away from the hustle bustle of life, I shot this kid at the sanctum sanctorom of the Holy Shrine..he was so fascinated with my rings and would not let go of my hand.
After shooting pictures here I visited the Bawas at the Dhuni and they just could not believe I had come to visit them.

I met Barsati Bawa now the present head of the Chancawalli Rafaees.

I shot a lot of pictures and at about 3 am I reached home..Sakib and I had dinner at the Dargah with his florist friend Rahim Bhai.

I shot the herbal aphrodisiac and medicine sells extensively that had almost every herbal cure for any illness..there was only one single gemstone guy and it was the first day of the Chancawalli Urus ..so his business had not yet picked up.



But the most intriguing incident , happened when I was shooting the Dargah interior, the poor lady who takes care of the shoes slippers of the devotees , saw me bowed her head , than coming closer to me she placed Rs 21 in my hands ,,she said she would have given me more but business was bad as it was the first day of the Urus , I was about to tell her I am not a Fakir, but I kept quite not wanting to hurt her sentiments.

So I quietly took the precious mount , I thought I would give it to some beggar lady at the Dargah, but Sakib told me to take it home , the next morning I gave the amount to my maid servant for her kids..

I realized that giving alms is a privilege but receiving alms from a person poorer than you is an honor..yes verily I am a beggar too.. and the humility of a person poorer than you is the humility of God..

The Icegolawala of Transit Camp Bandra

114,287 items / 742,539 views

When you exit out of the Indrajinagar slums , you just cant miss the Icegolawala of Bandra Transit camp..and for the kids he is the much needed person to quench their parched throats and he is cheaper than ice cream that you get at supermarkets ..

Mind you these are slum kids , most of the parents work, and the kids with some loose change come here and form a friendly cluster around the ice candy man.

This Ice candy man is very jovial, friendly and the parents trust him too, kids who cant handle the ice gola on a stick have it straight from a glass when the ice melts.

The poor kids childhood especially those living in the slums is incomplete without the icegolawala..

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sometimes a Photographer Too Needs to Be Shot

These are a few pictures sent to me with a note by Nawab Syed Mehdi Ali Khan of Hussaini Koti Hyderabad , I had shot the 8 Moharam event here..pictures were all shot by Raza photographer..

Adaab,
Mashallah, you are doing hectic work as a blogger. You have put so many picture of our Hussaini Kothi. Accept a few from our side.

Syed Mehdi Ali Khan
23-1-365, Hussaini Kothi,
Kotla Alijah, Hyderabad 500023

my poem dedicated to Nawab Syed Mehdi Al Khan

carrying the rumal
of princess fatima
to shoot hussaini koti
a barefeet blogger
from mumbai
to your
kingdom of pain
spirituality
he came
seeing you passion
your dedication
to hussain
your biggest fan
he became
Karbala
the black chapter
of Islam
Sham Damascus
where Muslim
womanhood
was shamed
with her kutbas
watched by 72
heads on a spear
Zainab the indomitable '
powerhouse
of Alis strength
accursed Yazid
his arrogance
tamed
from drops
of tears
that fell from
a mothers eyes
the Shias
were named
as a banner
of revolt
against oppression
terrorism
their ancestry claimed

Shooting the Soul of Humanity

These are a few pictures sent to me with a note by Nawab Syed Mehdi Ali Khan of Hussaini Koti Hyderabad , I had shot the 8 Moharam event here..pictures were all shot by Raza photographer..

Adaab,
Mashallah, you are doing hectic work as a blogger. You have put so many picture of our Hussaini Kothi. Accept a few from our side.

Syed Mehdi Ali Khan
23-1-365, Hussaini Kothi,
Kotla Alijah, Hyderabad 500023

Taboot of Imam Hussain and Zulana

Zuljana and Me

From The Cradle To The Grave

a little mujahid
strong and brave
from the atrocity
of accursed yazid
brotherhood
of peace
he did save
it was not water
but the love
of humanity
like his father
he did crave
while
the eunuchs
in yazids army
watched
all this
no shock wave
better to die
with dignity
than live
shamelessly
as a slave
a message
to all of us
he gave
from
the cradle
to the grave

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Mumbai The City of Peace Hope and Humanity

114,026 items / 740,736 views

Ali Reza Shirazis Juloos Mount Mary 2010

This is my new set at Flickr and I shot this a day before before I shot the English majlis of Maulana Sayyid Ali Naqvi on 24 Jan 2010, but I kept it on hold to post the majlis pictures.


Ali Reza Shirazi stays at Mount Mary bang opposite the Shiv Sena office , and last year his juloos began from his house and ended at the Supari Talao Grounds on the day of the Ag Ka Matam .

Ali Reza Shirazi is a humble Shia devout and his spiritual strength comes from his Mother Parveen Shirazi, and his father a man of few words and sheer simplicity, and because I consider his mother almost like my own , I try not to give this short juloos a miss.
Ali Reza Shirazi is short of man power but in spite of all this he with the help of his trusted friends his brother Ali Aman and well wishers tries to make this message of peace and tolerance a great success.

And everyone his neighbors predominantly Catholic support him and the cause of mutual coexistence..but there was a show of dissent by a Catholic gentleman a bearded person , suited booted who educated was totally crude to the bone, he wanted to bring his taxi in the building and the majlis was going on , I spoke to him politely and told him if he could walk the distance with his wife but he brushed me off as a fly on hs tea xc cup, and I was amazed and shocked , in Mumbai where each community stands for the other all bearing the inconvenience of the Mount Mary Fair traffic snarls , the honking and this man could not bear a few minutes discourse, he approached the cops , grumbling loudly and finally was escorted by them to his building next to where Ali Reza Shirazi lives..I shot his picture with the cops so I am not making up, I used the word tolerance when I talked to him , but how would he understand it if the parish priest has not talked to him about it..

I mean we talk about Aussies bashing Indians but than sometimes we are as bad as them in the way we treat our own.

I had no time to tell him and I would never have that I shoot all communities , I shoot all religiosity simply because I shoot India I shoot Indians and above all I shoot Mumbai the city that s the pride of all our lives..I shoot the Mount Mary Fair too year after year so that the guy away from home who once lived at Bandra can experience the universal love of the Madonna and her Child. I shoot Lal Bagh Cha Raja barefeet from his journey at Lalbagh till Nagpada to show you how the Muslims felicitate the Raja as an icon of our cultural ethos..and I follow him till the end the next morning before he is immersed.

So it hit me in my guts when a man behaves like this he was not on a wheel chair an invalid , and all Catholics fortunately are not like him..and I am a product of a Catholic school never did the padres ever brain wash me in to their fold , I give Jesus respect and also walk with Jesus from morning till evening feeling the pain of the community on Good Friday and participating in the 14 Stations of the Cross..

Though I did advice Shirazi to send letters to all the building people in his complex about the juloos much in advance so they are prepared and not taken by surprise and to leave a path for them to freely walk to their homes wen the matam begins ..And he will adhere to all this because Shiasm stands for Humanity the oppressed and the suppressed.

I only hope more Shias com and help him in making this a landmark juloos of peace , that showcases the tragedy of Karbala the slaughter murder genocide of innocent family people including the grandson of the Holy Prophet of Islam.

Yes verily Hussain is Humanity..

The Muslim Beggar Lady..Will Her Life Ever Change

outside the bandra
shia khoja mosque
she stands with
begging hands
her fate veiled
a few coins
no other demands
from the fire
into a cooking pan
she lands
her life
that her misery
has panned
from the
threshold
of gods house
sinking in quick sand
her life unplanned
only sorrow
at her back and command

Marziya Celebrates 60th Republic Day of India

This was shot close to the Indraji Nagar slums , this is the path I take to reach my work place so Marziya knows at a glance life on the other side of the fence, the path she takes is dark, unlit narrow with pipes running across the soul of the slum..that pays tribute to late Indira Gandhiji..Indias own Iron lady with an indomitable strength of steel in time of exigency and adversity..she lives and so does her heritage ..

While we take this path there is a tiny room where a young Muslim girl teaches the slum kids, tutors them and Marziya needs no invitation she goes and sits on the teachers lap imbibing the values of street survival..

And while we reached the spot where Marziya is sitting with a kid , the music blared reminding us of the sacrifice of the father of the nation.. and other freedom fighters of our mother land..and here as a nationalist Indian I think more important than making people recite and parrot Vande Matram , I have no issue with its recital, is to make them to carry the act of loving the mother land in deeds and actions too, a person whatever his religiosity should be willing to die for his country .. and this is what the child must be taught a child that did not witness the freedom struggle..and this is my personal opinion.,.nationalism is greater than anything and requires surrender of mans life in the time of the country's need..

I copy and paste the lyrics on your soul of the song from Jagriti Awakening that was playing in the background..

Hum Laye Hain Tufaan Se Kishti Nikal Ke
Iss Desh Ko Rakhna Mere Bachon Samhal Ke
Tum Hi Bhavishhya Ho Mere Bharat Vishal Ke
Iss Desh Ko Rakhna Mere Bachon Samhal Ke

Dekho Kaheen Barbaad Na Hove Ye Bagichaa
Isko Hriday Ke Khuun Se ‘Baapu Ne Hain Sincha
Rakha Hain Ye Chiraag Shaheedo Ne Bal Ke
Iss Desh Ko Rakhna Mere Bachon Samhal Ke

Duneeya Ke Daw Pench Se Rakhna Na Wastaa
Manzeel Tumharee Duur Hain Lamba Hain Rasta
Bhatka Na De Koyee Tumhe Dhoke Mein Dal Ke
Iss Desh Ko Rakhna Mere Bachon Samhal Ke

Atom Bamon Ke Zor Pe Aithhi Hai Ye Duneeya
Baarud Ke Ek Dher Pe Baithhi Hai Ye Duneeya
Tum Harr Qadam Uthaana Zara Dekh Bhal Ke
Iss Desh Ko Rakhna Mere Bachon Samhal Ke

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Majlis in English Maulana Sayyid Aliraza Naqvi at Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque

113,876 items / 739,601 views

I start a new set shot last night at 8.15 pm , an English mjlis recital by Maulana Sayyid Aliraza Naqvi lecturer and ex Principal of Hauza Birmingham UK at Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque.

I was invited by Facebook friend Asad Virani who requested me to come and to shoot the majlis thereby spreading the gospel by peace , peace that is equally wanted by everyone including the haves and the havenots..

Peace is the message of Imam Hussain..

If I had an army of 72 soldiers of Hussain,I would have achieved freedom for India in 24 hours...Mahatma Gandhi Father of the Nation..

So peace is the core essence of mans quest on Earth..irespective of cultural differences , color caste or creed ..Hussain is Humanity a single Voice against tyranny barbarism and oppression.. Man was born free and needs to be free of the despots of the world..

Maulana Sayyid Naqvi is a brilliant orator but what touched me and the audience was his sense of humility, he wants to learn more than he wants to preach..he rekindled hope where hope lay buried in conceit and arrogance in mans mind..and though I dont take notes and only shoot pictures I give you the gist of his lecture the first one , and this will continue for 10 days at the Bandra Shia Mosque dont miss it..

And this post is dedicated to him and his humility of soul mind and spirit.

Happy Republic Day From Marziya Shakir

My jewelery collection and Marziya..

This Ends The Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010 Series

With this picture I complete the Guru Nanak Park juloos series of 405 pictures at my Flickr photo stream.. it was really a tiring and painful process completing this because of my uploading problems with my service provider You Telecom.

I have two new sets after this Ali Reza Shirazis Mount Mary Juloos shot on 24 Jan 2010 and the English majlis recited by Maulana Sayyid Ali Naqvi lecturer and ex Principal of Hauza at Birmingham UK.. shot last night..

Lying On The Floor to Shoot Pain

as every drop
of blood that falls on
the parched ground
gives testimony
to hussain
a photo blogger
lying on the floor
to shoot pain
a bit crazy
a bit insane
bejeweled
humane
cosmic
creativity
embedded
in a fragmented
pea brain
one legged photography
the stance of a human crane
somethings you are born with
from the cradle to the tomb
with you it will remain
binding you to divinity
through humanity
with a silken chain

Shooting the Dark Side of the Moon

a flesh that gets beaten
by razor sharp blades
to which the human
shia flesh is immune
shooting pain
as dark side of the moon
the body the soul
the spirit in total tune
you are what you are
what you are not
another name
for misfortune
humility is
when you are
born with a
wooden spoon
hussain to humanity
the greatest boon

Dont Ask Me Why I Shoot What I Shoot

I am lying beneath his feet on my back a few inches away from the point and the stroke of his bleeding sword and weeping back.

dont ask me why I shoot what I shoot
a system computerized to re route
a system I dont neet to reboot
dont ask me why I shoot
what I shoot moments
from the flowing memories
of life I loot my efforts
may or may not bear fruit
funereal music of pain
gushing as blood
though a flute
falling from the heights
of hardcore street photography
do you really need a parachute
I reiterate I dont shoot
for the shias
my cosmic conscience
silent and mute
to all of humanity
white black yellow bronze
photo blogs as my tribute
my barefeet path
my pictorial pedestrian pursuit
ghame hussain yesterday
today tomorrow
no yazid will ever uproot
hussainyat
on the soul of humanity
a dimensional offshoot
no fear of a message
of peace no dispute
the mind is a computer
no yazidi virus will
ever pollute

Dedicated to Maulana Sayyed Ali Naqvi
Lecturer and ex principal of Hauza of Birmingham..
who is reciting Majlis in English at Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque
8.15 pm for 10 days dont miss it ..

My Continuing Upload Problems You Telecom

He was the smartest kid at the Guru Nanak Park juloos , he had scourged himself at Almeida Park and was sitting besides me and Marziya near the Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque..and this is the sword that the boys of Anjumane Mehndi used when the juloos ended , this was one hell of a sword , it sent almost three guys to the Bhabha Hospital for stitches.

My uploading problems continue in 2 hours I have managed to upload 4 files to my Flickr photo stream out of 87 that I had placed on the Flickr uploader..

I sent them a message again after I came home shooting a Majlis in English at the Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque just now..

My Continuing Upload Problems

Your technician had come home and done the necessary changes , at 30.30 pm , I was told to connect after 6 pm as your server was down, but I am sorry to say he has absolutely no solution to my uploading problems , I could upload only 4 files out of 87 that I had placed on the flickr.com uploader in two hours , and earlier I never ever had uploading problems using You Telecom ?Why Now.

I have sent a message to your technical department. too.

Why dont you resolve my issue instead of torturing me this way..

Thanking You
But not enough
Firoze Shakir 237303

Monday, January 25, 2010

Beggars Cant Be Choosers - You Telecom

You Have no Time to Resolve my Issue

New Message Sent to You Telecom Customer Care

To Whomsoever Concerned
You Telecom Broadband and Cable Ind Ltd
Customer Care

There is a gross connectivity problem at your end that you are blatantly hiding from those like me who have subscribed to your service, the speed test taken last evening as suggested by your customer care clearly shows the fault of my uploading not happening at my Flickr site lies at your door, I have lost valuable time and my work of sharing these pictures is still incomplete ..will you add extra time to this outage problem to my account or have I to suffer in silence .

I am an existing client and nothing has changed in your attitude towards better service or response..sadly even your technicians are inadequate to solve my problem which is going on since a week.

I have no personal issue with You Telecom you charge me for a service that you dont give..Why?

I dont complain when the net is working smoothly I pay my dues in time personally sending my cheque to your Gods Gift office at Bandra so why am I being given this shoddy and uncalled for treatment.

And I am blogging all the messages I am sending you so the world can know of my pain , my problems.

And till date not a single response from your end not even a phone call from you laid back customer care honchos..why should they care there salaries on time and so my connectivity problem is not their headache anyway. ..in spite of paying as per your plan I have taken Im given the worst service ..
I am sure someone from your management with a human heart might just read this in blog form on the internet ..because you have no time to read it.

Thanking you
Firoze Shakir
237303

The Shia Kids of Bandra

Most of the kids at the Guru Nanak Park juloos are from Bandra , this is the ideal place for their scourging as adults dont take part here , and where the adults take part , near the culminating point of the Shia Bandra Khoja mosque , it is really too dangerous to scourge , among the hardcore boys of Anjuman e Yadgare Mehndi.

But yes there are little kids of Bandra Bazar Road who took swords in their hands to cut their backs..the Bandra Bazar Shia kids are far too experienced in art of self infliction and self mutilation a traditional ritual that comes with the territory of a Shia mind space..

But cutting or bloodletting is not mandatory , you can be a Shia without cutting your head or your back.. but blood letting is a way of protest against the tyrants of the world of Terrorism , and one of the founding fathers was accursed Yazid of the Ummayad Caliphate .As a street photographer I have shot the angst of my community and presented them as photo blogs of pain..a pain that is called Ghame Hussain.

Shooting the Bandra Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010

The Wazir brothers Munir, Wazir Asghar who organize this awesome grand spectacular procession from their house at Bashiron , the building where Mr Subhash Ghai had his first office Mukta Arts and a very lucky one mind you..just a stones throw from where Mithunda lived many years back, and known as Guru Nanak Park close to late Mohomed Rafi Saabs bungalow is the place where the Shias of Mumbai congregate , this juloos was started by their dad a renowned Momin and lover of Ahle Bayt..and so it continues as a heritage by his posterity.

The juloos begins with nohas a majlis ably and beautifully recited by Maulana Ali Hasan Hilal A Rajani of Karachi Pakistan, who spoke about the Hussaini Brahmins, and the message of global peace a message on the wings of Hussainiyat.

From Guru Nanak Park accompanied by Alams , Imam Hussains Taboot , Imam Hussains steed a replica we call Zuljana the juloos supported by the Bandra Police , controlling traffic snarls and law and order .. moved on.

In between the Anjumans from various parts of Mumbai did matam, women children men making the bulk and spirtual strength of the juloos, nobody was inconvenienced and this is the mystifying magic of tolerance respect for another mans religion in Amchi Mumbai..Jai Maharashtra.

Liitle kids did zanjir matam, this is the juloos kids love for the freedom to scourge without restrain , but eyes of the elders on them , taking care of their wounds.

At Almeida Park, there was water , snacks hot tea fo the mourners here it was woman and kids and families..I had moved away with Marziya my two year old grand daughter , who shot pictures of the kids scourging on my Nikon D80 assisted by me, we headed towards the Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque, I sent Marziya home as the blood scenes of sword matam, hardcore zanjir matam is just out of the world , performed by the boys of Anjuman e Yadgare Mehndi all Bandra boys like Mintu Mohsin Hallauri, Meezam Riyaz and others .Habib Nasser my friend cut his finger while shooting this event, most of the guys had to be rushed to Bhabha Hospital for stitches they has cut open their backs with the swords that required urgent medical aid.

At the mosque there was Niyaz e Hussain, but I could not taste it, my passion is documenting the spiritual fervor of my Shia race and and the indomitable spirit of humility and humanity we call Hussain.

And the day after this I shot the juloos organized by my dear friend Ali Reza Shirazi at Mount Mary.. that is last night.

My uploading is slow and has taken a very long time , the Guru Nanak Park Juloos was shot on a 1.50 MB memory card..so now you know what I have to go through to share these pictures with all of you..My uploading stops after some time and I have to manually re start again , thanks to You Telecom slow and a very bad connection..


In the picture Munir Bhai in gray shirt the organizer of the Guru Nanak Park juloos and me and Halu a dear friend from the area..

Shooting the Bandra Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010

The Wazir brothers Munir, Wazir Asghar who organize this awesome grand spectacular procession from their house at Bashiron , the building where Mr Subhash Ghai had his first office Mukta Arts and a very lucky one mind you..just a stones throw from where Mithunda lived many years back, and known as Guru Nanak Park close to late Mohomed Rafi Saabs bungalow is the place where the Shias of Mumbai congregate , this juloos was started by their dad a renowned Momin and lover of Ahle Bayt..and so it continues as a heritage by his posterity.

The juloos begins with nohas a majlis ably and beautifully recited by Maulana Ali Hasan Hilal A Rajani of Karachi Pakistan, who spoke about the Hussaini Brahmins, and the message of global peace a message on the wings of Hussainiyat.

From Guru Nanak Park accompanied by Alams , Imam Hussains Taboot , Imam Hussains steed a replica we call Zuljana the juloos supported by the Bandra Police , controlling traffic snarls and law and order .. moved on.

In between the Anjumans from various parts of Mumbai did matam, women children men making the bulk and spirtual strength of the juloos, nobody was inconvenienced and this is the mystifying magic of tolerance respect for another mans religion in Amchi Mumbai..Jai Maharashtra.

Liitle kids did zanjir matam, this is the juloos kids love for the freedom to scourge without restrain , but eyes of the elders on them , taking care of their wounds.

At Almeida Park, there was water , snacks hot tea fo the mourners here it was woman and kids and families..I had moved away with Marziya my two year old grand daughter , who shot pictures of the kids scourging on my Nikon D80 assisted by me, we headed towards the Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque, I sent Marziya home as the blood scenes of sword matam, hardcore zanjir matam is just out of the world , performed by the boys of Anjuman e Yadgare Mehndi all Bandra boys like Mintu Mohsin Hallauri, Meezam Riyaz and others .Habib Nasser my friend cut his finger while shooting this event, most of the guys had to be rushed to Bhabha Hospital for stitches they has cut open their backs with the swords that required urgent medical aid.

At the mosque there was Niyaz e Hussain, but I could not taste it, my passion is documenting the spiritual fervor of my Shia race and and the indomitable spirit of humility and humanity we call Hussain.

And the day after this I shot the juloos organized by my dear friend Ali Reza Shirazi at Mount Mary.. that is last night.

My uploading is slow and has taken a very long time , the Guru Nanak Park Juloos was shot on a 1.50 MB memory card..so now you know what I have to go through to share these pictures with all of you..My uploading stops after some time and I have to manually re start again , thanks to You Telecom slow and a very bad connection..


In the picture Munir Bhai in gray shirt the organizer of the Guru Nanak Park juloos and me and Halu a dear friend from the area..

You Telecom Makes Me Suffer

There is a problem with your Connectivity

New Message Sent To You Telecom Customer Care

I contacted your Customer Care at You Telecom , and my complaint was made ,

2010012408100 you telecom speed problem....216 kps when actually the speed should be 514 I was told , all my latest pictures cannot be uploaded causing me immense pain and torture..I have lost unnecessary time and energy and my problems still continue..

Why dont you solve my problem once and for all.

Firoze Shakir

237303

Picture of the little girl portraying Bibi Sakina at the Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010 Bandra that I am trying to upload at Flickr.com without much success..

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Reliving the Pain of Bibi Sakina at Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010

I AM DEEPLY HURT WITH YOU TELECOM

Since last night I am trying to upload pictures of the Bandra Guru Nanak Juloos a Shia Moharam event I shot last night..and despite all my efforts my uploading is slow intermittent and sluggish.

I have to re start my upload every time so I have written the following message to their Customer Care and I am publishing it here so they can remedy my problem as fast as they can.
My message to Customer Care You Telecom Broadband and Cable India Pvt Ltd.

I recently changed my plan , in order to get faster speed and faster uploading of my pictures to my website on Flickr.com .
But it hurts me to say my uploading is worse than what it was before, uploading takes place at snails pace , as a photo blogger and cyber photo journalist You Telecom in its new avatar as You Telecom Broadband is of no Help to me at all.

I have told this to your concerned department heads at your Bandra Gods Gift office, but my uploading problem continues.,.and I once again appeal to you one last time or I will move myself to another better service oriented internet service provider..

I have three connections at my house presently besides this I have no issue with You Telecom.

Firoze Shakir
237303

Picture of a child portraying Bibi Sakina the daughter of Imam Hussain her pain her tribulations..the series I am trying to upload without success at Flickr.com

Reliving the Pain of Bibi Sakina at Guru Nanak Park Juloos

Bandra Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010

Munna from Imamwada brings this Shabi of the Cradle of Ali Asghar and his little daughter portrays the pain of Bibi Sakina daughter of Imam Hussain.
Munna has two daughters both look identical,I have shot the older one extensively at the various juloos in town.

Munna is the same person who recites Namaz on Fire a metaphoric reminder of the fourth Imam reciting Namaz in chains on the burning sands of Karbala while being transported to Sham as prisoner in the court of Yazid

Hussainiyat Humility and Grace

Fatima is the face
of the future
of our race
yes a mothers love
in every girl child
deserving
her bounty
her praise
in every heart
she stays
our ancestry
to this great
noble mother
we trace
hussain is humanity
the catch phrase
wholeheartedly
we embrace
our dreams
our hope
our tears
embedded in
our mothers womb
no other dreams
to chase
born as shias
no yazid
could ever erase
hussainiyat
humility and grace

Aman Ka Farishta - Ya Hussain

Majlis recited by Maulana Hasan Ali Hilal A. Rajani from Karachi Pakistan at Guru Nanak Park Juloos..23 Jan 2010

Maulana Saab is a true Aman Ka Farishta spreading peace through humanity , humanity that is embodied as Hussain..and Hussain is the key to fight terrorism and oppression shaking the pillars of True Islam...the bigots and promoters of a satanic agenda that divide hearts souls and neighboring countries and put the blame on America for inherent faults of their own shortcomings..

Hussain is a power that cuts across man made barbed frontiers , Hussain is a breeze that touches us all irrespective of our caste color of creed..yes indeed we shed tears for Hussain but we also curse Yazid..killers of Imam Hussain followers of his breed..the misbegotten wanton seed..

It was Hussain from the clutches of Yazidiyat the soul of Islam freed..yes more than a message of Hate , Muslims killing Muslims its Peace that we need..He gave his Head but not his Hand proved it with a single Sacrificial Deed.. Ahle Bayt a necklace of precious beads..on the sands of Karbala epitomizing Humanity he bleeds

Jalal Mamu of Byculla and Me

Jalal Mamu is a very humble Shia man, down to earth , low profile and least talkative, but an icon of Shia faith, and Mumbai Shia way of Life.

Jalal Mamu organizes an event near Byculla station on 9 Moharam much before the Honda Byculla Savoy juloos and this event brings in a lot of people , thee is a short majlis and Jalal Mamu strips himself t the waist and Jalal Mamu is the greatest sword matamdar , his strokes cut through flesh , and ripping pieces from his body in the air, after the sword is pulled from his hand by 20 people , Jalal Mamu now takes the hocky shaped zanjir and further mows his back wounds with deafening razor sharp blades..I shot this last year pictures on my Flickr photostream .

From Byculla station Jalal Mamus juloos joins the Honda Savoy juloos.

The next day Ashura , Jala Mamu again cuts his bruised back with the sword at the Amin Imambada event..

I am a great fan of Jalal Mamu , not because of his sword matam , but because of his sincerity and simplicity of heart and soul.

He is an Iranian by birth and recites the Noha for the Busheri matam..

One upon a time Imamwada Bhendi Bazar had a huge population of Bushers and Shirazis of Iranian origin , they bought in the now famous Busheri matam, choreography of pain .. called Ghame Hussain.

Jalal Bhai as I call him knew my late father Mohomed Shakir Lakhnavi of Colaba as we stayed at Khatau Bhuvan in the early 50s , now the place is called Jony Castle...In 1963 we shifted to Mohini Mansions Strand Cinema Colaba..

My father was associated with the Imamiya Sabil at Bhendi Bazar, since its inception as the founder Maqbool Bhai Zariwala was my dads maternal uncle from Lucknow.

My dad made the Ashura fakhe shikani food for those who break the fast on Ashura in the evening..this was a Lucknowi specialty khade masoor ki idal and rice .. before they moved from here towards the Rehmatabad Shia cemetery for Sham e Ghariba ..those days recited by Maulana Abbas Rizvi..I think

Everybody who does the sword matam emulates Jalal Mamu , he is a veteran and pioneer of this self inflicting weapon of pain..

My friens Baqar and Habib Nasser hold Jalal Mamu in the highest esteem .

And the other person who is famous for his blood letting Matam is Ali Shah of JJ Hospital..

Bandra Guru Nanak Park Juloos 2010

I start a new set at my Flickr photostream, Bandra Guru Nanak Park juloos 2010 , this is Shia procession that begins at Bashiron building near Guru Nanak Park ,organized by the Wazir brothers.

This begins with a noha recital , Abbas Bhai recited a noha, than there was a Noha by some Nohakars from Delhi.

The majis was recited by Maulana Hasan Ali Hilal A. Rajani from Karachi.
There was a beautifully decorated Zuljana and a Taboot of Imam Hussain , including Muna Bhais daughter portraying the pain of Bibi Sakina along with the cradle of Ali Asghar.


There were several alams, Mamu recited the Noha for the Busheri Matam, and the procession moved from Guru Nanak Park via Turner Road to Almeida Park finally culminating at Bandra Shia Khoja Mosque.


As soon as the procession reached the Mosque , hardcore sword matam,zanjir matam and kama matam began.

Marziya was with me till Almeida Park than went home much before the blood gore and blood letting began.

Habib and Baqar Nasser too were there along with their anjuman.

The sword matam was absolutely mind blowing and with a ferocity never seen before.. he hardcore Matamdars of Bandra lead from the front.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Mind Games Man Plays

Man is born an Atheist.. in the Cradle as he grows the line of his parents religion he tows ..comes in hate ..on his path to virtual spirituality humanity he mows..man the only living animal living behind closed doors..

Astrologer at De Monte Street

Both their lives are fucked .
The man who is having his hand read and the man who is reading the hand .One is seeking money mysteries of the future expand , the other fucked dimwit seeking hope his fucked life unplanned ..his love life on the rocks off band stand..tying to get a job in some foreign land..presently working at a bhangar shop..desultory delusional dreamland...after paying the fucked astrologer his fucked destiny as bad luck crash lands..

Photo Blogging

photo blogging
the face of humanity
not for money nor praise
poetic passion almost a craze
searching for situations
catapulting them as always
pedestrian pathos
in a blog to showcase
dreams that we chase
hope to embrace
the essence of good living
man and his god
face to face
on your computer screen
seeking solace
mutual coexistence
tolerance respect
for the other mans
spiritual mind space
caste color or creed
not influenced
by a mans white face
humility born in a cradle
mans rightful birth place

Photo Blogging

photo blogging
the face of humanity
not for money nor praise
poetic passion almost a craze
searching for situations
catapulting them as always
pedestrian pathos
in a blog to showcase
dreams that we chase
hope to embrace
the essence of good living
man and his god
face to face
on your computer screen
seeking solace
mutual coexistence
tolerance respect
for the other mans
spiritual mind space
caste color or creed
not influenced
by a mans white face
humility born in a cradle
mans rightful birth place

Marziya on the Move

113,413 items / 735,090 views

through
pictures
her world
she wants to
improve
eyesores
at bandra bazar road
open gutters garbage
she wants to remove
humility
the essence
of good photography
a thought to approve
pedestrian pathos
street poetry
a karmic chemistry
beyond the groove
get up and be counted
dont just stand aloof

The Barefeet Blogger of Mumbai

113,387 items / 734,825 views

My leg has healed finally, it took a lot of time...and I wear a pair of slippers most of the time.. but I shall shoot Moharam juloos barefeet..the two big ones are the Guru Nanak Park juloos on 23 Jan and the Supari Talao Ag Ka Matam on 30 Jan 2010.

There is a juloos on 24 Jan Sunday at Mount Mary Road of Ali Reza Shirazi..

Through the Legs of a Woman

everything sells
switchboards
cars door bells
her nude form
poetry passion
on the soul
of advertising
spells
her nubile
comely body
exotic neurotic erotic
like musky perfume
smells
dreams disillusioned
it gift wraps re sells
woman embedded in the soul
of humanity
the missing link
in a nutshell
even as a dumb
blond broad
she excels
what man
buys in retail
in wholesale
she outsells

Good Old Bollywood

Once upon a time
say the two
old ladies
it was jolly good
good old Bollywood
heroes
dilip saab
raj kapoor
sunil dutt
dev anand
manoj kumar
rajendra kumar
guru dutt
shammi kappor
sashi kapoor
balraj sahani
pradip kumar
ashok kumar
kishore kumar
mehmood
pictures
that were aesthetic
social life dramas
not offensive or crude

heroines
nargis dutt
madhubala
meena kumari
tanuja nutan
waheeda rehman
nanda geeta bali
mutual coexistence
no feud
no skin no sexy nude
celluloid cinemascopic
fortitude
pictures
that portrayed
reality not
sex or falsehood
generation after generation
time and tide withstood
today's heroes heroines
nothing but time pass
driftwood
misplaced masculinity
mocking manhood

Friday, January 22, 2010

Jerking off in his sleep

a handcart
called desire
the road
side creep
wantonly
vagabond
jerking off
in his sleep
his mound
of venus
a garbage heap
from one comely
maiden to another
he leaps
seminal sorrow
wakes up and weeps
what he sows
another mam reaps

Her Camera Eye I Bless

Marziya Shakir
a pictorial progress
on word press
flickr facebook
her online
address
her camera eye
I bless
god give
her a long life
peace hope
happiness
lifelong success
long after I am gone
she will shoot
the distressed
the oppressed
through a photo blog
explicitly expressed
chip of a blog
you have rightly
guessed
a black hijab
more smartly dressed
shooting men
cutting their heads
beating their chest
hussain is humanity
a 1400 year old protest
he who gave his head
but not his hand
won the spiritual contest
savior of the needy
the terrorized suppressed

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Marziya and Senior Inspector Prakash George Bandra

Marziya loves policeman a fact all the policemen of Bandra Police Station know , and Uncle Prakash George Senior Inspector of Bandra Police Station is very special..she knows that very well as he sends his orderly to get Marziya a big bar of chocolate.

Marziya wishes all the policemen as she walks to school or on her return..and the cops who are fathers grand fathers too wave out to her with mutual respect and good will.

Bandra The Undisputed Uncrowned Queen of Garbage

on the soul
of society
a war they wage
Bandra The Undisputed
Uncrowned Queen of Garbage
going from bad to verse
at every stage
a syndrome
of apathy
neglect
as our children
age
bandra
the queen
of open gutters
stinking sewage
now that he has
got his ministerial seat
he has gone backstage
everything in bandra
but this scene stealer
of sorrows and misery
wont see any
newspapers
front page
the dirge of a blogger
dying in a cage

She Begs With Her Eyes

caught in
the vicious grip
of fate
caught in a
painful vice
dressed in
the winding sheet
of pain
she begs
with her eyes
shamed womanhood
as time flies
far away
in her shanty
her child cries
another
will be born
if the first one dies
reality of her state
her soul in disguise
pushed into
early marriage
she pays a price
makes me wonder
beneath the feet
of motherhood
lies paradise
the Muslims
see this everyday
at the Friday prayers
at the market
at the crossroad
giving her
a few coins will suffice
building new spiritual
structures madrsas
on the soul
of the down trodden
to be precise
once bitten
twice
shy
silence
on the soul
of humanity
the best advice

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Moharam in Mumbai 2009

113,202 items / 731,866 views

This completes the series Moharam in Mumbai 2009 at my Flickr photostream, 271 pictures given to me by Munna Kama of Kaisar Bagh to add to my Flickr photostream.


Though he has not told me who shot the pictures I thank the photographer too, he has documented the angst of the Shia community of Mumbai.

If I had not gone to Hyderabad I would have shot this segment that begins on eve of 7 Moharam at Kaisar Bagh and finally ends with Sham e Ghariba at Rehmatabad Shia cemetery recited by Maulana Athar Saab of Lucknow.

And thanks to You Broadcast , that was earlier You Telecom that was prior to that Iqara , my net crashed , due to a fiber cut, at 7.30 pm last night and was resumed this morning.

This is a regular feature of You Broadband, and they dont compensate you for the time lost, or add extra time to your plan for such an exigency.

And sending messages to them or talking about the same to You Customer care is water on a ducks ass..

So I gave my computer rest , and rested too..I woke up several times though as my soul is hooked to Flickr and Facebook but it was dead completely...

And now to the guy cutting head a ritual known as Kamazani, watch his grip, I would have slept on the floor to capture the glint of fearlessness in his eyes..and Moharam is incomplete without blood letting and gore.It comes with the territory..and I love shooting blood and gore..so does my American friend Dr Glenn Losack MD.

However I like shooting the streets , it is bursting forth with pictorial gemstones..I like to be abused , threatened for shooting street pictures , I am doing nothing illegal, and people with illegal minds hate the camera more than their nagging wives ..

The camera seeks truth out however hard you try to bury it under layers and layers of deceit.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Munna Kama of Kaisar Bagh

112,998 items / 730,926 views

A checkered scarf round his neck , he places the dagger in the boys hand and with cries of Ya Ali Ya Ali along with the crowds urges the boy to cut his head without fear or pain.

Spiritual Blood Bath Kaisar Bagh Dongri

112,981 items / 730,917 views

When the short majlis gets over at Kaisar Bagh Dongri, the people that were seated hurriedly get up and form a circle , the space within is now replaced and dominated by the men and boys who will do zanjir matam, sword matam and kama zani.

Around the hall the procession of Alams and Taboots moves on and this is now at close quarters , the alams come from various Anjumans of Imamwada and other areas in the vicinity.

Munna kama my friends voice can be heard along with others shouting Ya Ali Ya Ali as they urge the guys holding the daggers to cut their heads , the first aid guys quickly wash the bleeding wounds and bandage the same efficiently and quickly.

Now beyond the hall in the courtyard outside little kids do the zanjir zani and there is a medical aid stall.. everything is hand for an emergency including a waiting ambulance.

Even the top guys and trustees give in a hand , so you will see Safdar Karmali or Moeb Nasser helping the mourners and the matamdars.

Kaisar Bagh is verily a Shia Khoja Gadh of Faith..

Every Shia khoja kid has run with alams, cut his head here first..and the older folks now aged , with all this wet wet eyes and nostalgia.

And here I am blogging text on pictures not shot by me.. I am giving a voice to the silence of a visual soul..shot by someone with a greater passion for the documentation of his faith..

You dont need to be a great photographer to shoot pain.. you must feel it to make others feel it to..a 1400 year pain , a protest against injustice and oppression and nothing else..Hussain is Humanity...

Har Kaum Pukaregi Hamare Hain Hussain...

A Moment of No Return

You have to be physically present at Kaisar Bagh to capture a child or a teenagers tryst with faith via the dagger , a point of no return.

Kids waiting for their turn , some annoyed as the dagger was pulled away from their hand before they could cut themselves satisfactorily .. frayed tempers , some guys who snarl at you with open fangs for taking their pictures makes me throw up.. humility where art thou at Kaisar Bagh when I need you most.

But Munna and his volunteers know the purpose of my pictures , and they know I do this as a passion and not for an commercial purpose, and I know the one person who must have genuinely missed me this Moharam at Kaisar Bagh is Munna Kama.

I was in Hyderabad shooting Ashura there.. over 3000 pictures shot in three days.

In Mumbai I only shot the eve of 7 Moharam I left for Hyderabad the next morning.

And I on my part missed Moharam in Mumbai, but I wanted a Moharam backdrop change and Hyderabad was a perfect change with the Bargah Bibi ka Alam and Hussaini Koti.

Being Human

God was confused he did not know whether to make me a Hindu Sufi Shia Christian or Jew He mixed all the colors made a color new.. He ad...