Part of the Memoirs of Seyyed Ghalbi Hossein Razavi Kashmiri

Ayatollah Khamenei Trip to Kashmir

Faezeh Sassanikhah
Translated by: Fazel Shirzad


Note: Another pure memoir, which I can remember about the Imam Khomeini's movement (before I came to Iran), is about the supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei's trip to Kashmir, which, if I am not mistaken, was in late 1980 or early 1981.

One week before the arrival of the supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei, a person named Eng. Javad Sarfaraz, who was later martyred along with Martyr Beheshti, arrived in Kashmir. He had a close relationship with the Islamic Association of Iranian Students. At that time, everyone who came to Kashmir, my Islamic Association, informed Eng. Gholam Ali Golzar and Mr. Seyyed Mohammad Razavi. We met him during the trip to Eng. Javad Sarfaraz to Kashmir. We held a meeting with him in the office of the Islamic Association of Iranian Students in Kashmir, and he talked about Ayatollah Khamenei's trip to Kashmir. In those days, Ayatollah Khamenei was the Friday prayer leader of Tehran and the Imam's representative in the Supreme Defense Council, which were two special positions in those days. Mr. Sarfaraz praised Mr. Khamenei very much, and we, who listened to his Friday sermons, were very interested in him. After that ceremony, I planned to welcome him for a week.

Mr. Khamenei’s trip was to India and during the trip, he visited Kashmir for one day and stayed in this region for 24 hours. Kashmir is a vast and mountainous region and has different parts, the most important of which is the Kashmir Valley (known as the Kashmir Valley), a region with very beautiful nature. There is even a poet who mentioned this region in his poem:

If Paradise is located on the earth,

Here is that paradise, here is that paradise

Mr. Khamenei's plane was flying at 4 pm on Thursday, and we knew about it a week ago. I have been excited about a weak age. Mr. Sarfaraz and I were so busy preparing the situation for the welcoming Mr. Khamenei. Since I was an employee, I had to take permission to leave the office; but I forgot and I left the office to visit Mr. Khamenei without permission.

When Mr. Khamenei arrived, we were ready to welcome him; because we had planned a week for this purpose. The night when the next day he was to come, we took a taxi after evening and night prayers and installed speakers on it. I took a taxi and announced the arrival of Mr. Khamenei in the whole city of "Sringer". We informed the whole city by about midnight. We were going to propagate more in Shiite areas; because we did not expect the Sunnis - except for their famous figures- to attend the welcoming ceremony of Mr. Khamenei. On the day of his arrival, everyone came to greet him, and it was a unique day in the history of Kashmir. Not a single Shiite cleric stayed at home. Even the late Hojjat al-Islam "Haj Seyyed Yusuf al-Musawi al-Safawi", an 85-year-old man, had arrived at the airport.  When he arrived, ‌ people rushed to the airport. The Shiites arrived by bus, taxi, van, truck, and other vehicles, and were greeted at Srinagar Airport. On that day, he gave a speech and gave an interview at the press conference in Badgam Hussainiya. The next day, he delivered a speech at the Zadibal Hussainiya, the Shiite center of Srinagar. On the same day (Friday), the Sunnis also attended the Friday prayers at the Srinagar's mosque, which we had already prepared for this program. At first, "Mir Waez Mawlawi Farooq" - the Sunni Friday Imam - offered the Friday prayer and Mr. Khamenei also offered the prayer behind him. After Friday prayers, the Supreme Leader spoke for about fifteen minutes.

The reason he spoke for a short time was that he had to go at the airport by four o'clock after prayers. During his speech, he briefly referred to the verse of the Quran "All of you together, to the cable of Allah, and do not separate" and spoke about the unity of Muslims and the importance of the unity of Shiites and Sunnis. The effects of this 15-minute lecture on Kashmir history were more than the writing of dozens of books and months of lectures. We saw these effects with our own eyes. It was the first time in the history of Kashmir that a Shiite cleric came to the country and spoke at the Sunni mosque.

Before that day, Shiites and Sunnis were in deep conflict. Even if a Shiite went to the Sunni mosque, they would purify the mosque and used to say that a Shiite man entered the mosque and made the mosque impure and dirty.

Newspapers also wrote a lot about this incident.

From the moment Mr. Khamenei arrived in Kashmir until the last moment of his departure, I recorded all of his speeches with a personal tape recorder. I also recorded his lectures at the Badgam Hussainiya (the residence of the late Agha Seyyed Yousef), the famous hussainiya "Zadi Bell", and the Sunni mosque. I also recorded his press interview from the beginning to the end on a tape.

After the 24-hour trip of the Supreme Leader, we said goodbye to him and drove him away. The next Friday, during Friday prayers in Tehran, he spoke about his trip to India, especially Kashmir, and I recorded the text of his speech on the radio.

Ten or twelve days later, I transcribed and translated all the tapes. Mr. Golzar edited it and Mr. Seyyed Mohammad Razavi became its financial support and we published these writings in the form of a booklet. We published two photos of Mr. Khamenei on the cover of the booklet. One photo is related to the Friday prayer trench in which he was praying with clerical clothe and a gun in the hand, and the other is in the front trench and the Basiji uniform. These two photos were printed on the cover of the booklet at my suggestion.[1]


[1] Sheikh Mohammadi, R. (2009). Memoirs of Seyyed Ghalbi Hossein Razavi Kashmiri, Islamic Revolutionary Documentation Center. Vol. I, p. 58.

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