Thursday, September 4, 2014

.Why The Shias Allow Their Kids To Go Under The Knife

Please treat this as a photo journalism shot , but this ritual is known as kamazani and is common all over India during Moharam mostly Ashura and Chehlum .

This may not be pleasing to others at all I hardly shoot it anymore , as it is considered in bad taste , but as a photographer I have shot it to show you the intensity of grief that is part of the Shia ethos .

Mostly parents do this as they have taken a vow before the child was born it is called Mannat , that if God gve them a healthy child they would mark his forehead with the dagger in the name of Imam Hussain , the grandson of the Holy Prophet who was brutally murdered by the Muslims of that time under the terrorist regime of Caliph Yazid of the Umayad Caliphate .

As I am from Mumbai , the kamazni of new born kids older kids takes place at the various Shia Imambargahs from 6 night of Moharam at Kaisar Bagh Dongri  it is intense on 7 night the Martyrdom of Hazrat Abbas .

But on 9 Moharam it is on the roads in a procession that starts at Honda Byculla and moves to a  neighboring Imambada than cuts through Bhendi Bazar to Shustri Imambada and ends at Amin Imambada via Fotowat Imambada .

Than the kamazni takes place on 10 morning at Amin Imambada Ashura day at Imamwada Road .. here it is a passion play performed by the Shia Iranian migrants of Mumbai,

Than in the evening a procession starts from Yakub Gully ,Moghul Masjid and various anjumans follow it till the Shia Iranian cemetary Rehmatabad ,.. there is zanjir zani on the roads kama zani and it is here the parents allow their children to this ritual to fulfill their vows taken before his birth.

Most of the kids older ones younger ones do it themselves ,,the only time parental guidance is not needed .

The same happens during the 40 day procession again known as Chehlum.. this too ends at Rehmatabad and the scene within is horrifying ,, a lot of bloodletting and all this is know as Ghame Hussain.. self flagellation , head cutting with dagger and the sword matam cutting the back with swords .

In Hyderabad it kama or childs kama like Chennai is intense .both on Ashura and Chehlum .

Same in Lucknow on the streets near Shia college ..till the juloos ends at Karbala Talkatora on Ashura Day.

In Kolkatta it is done with barber razors fitted with blades ..

But here in Chennai where this image was shot along wth the Shia kids , even the Hindu mothers bring their children out on the streets hand them over to the Shia guy wieldin the dagger to get his head marked with it , not deep just a line and the blood is stopped with rose water .

I shot this ritual extensively in Chennai and the images I moderated and restricted from public view , but here I have given you the brief eplanation into the essence of this ritual.. mind you while shooting this I had cut my own head too and being a diabetic my bleeding does not stop though it is nicely held by a tight bandage ,

No ointments are applied , no antibiotic shots just matter of belief and faith.

It Rains Blood On Moharam.. When The Shias Celebrate New Year

Hum Naya Sal Manate Hain Tere Matam Se

Apni Taqdeer Jagate hain Tere Matam se
Khoon ki Rah Bichate hain Tere Matam se
Apne Izhare Aqidat ka Salika yeh hai
Hum Naya Sal Manate hain Tere Matam se

this is specially for those guys that send SMS to provoke our faith in mourning and sadness

We Bleed ..Through Our Blood Our Pain You Read

our blood
we warned you
that one day
the children
of yazeed
will come
make you
but you
no heed
you thought
we were heretics
kafirs you persecuted
us instead of the serpent
seed ..from the diseased
 loins of yazeed than they
came in black clothes
ISIS ,, now for lives of
your own countrymen
you plead..the jihaddist
scourge a deathly breed

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