akistan observes anniversary of Imam Hussain Chehlum or Arbaeen today. Shia Muslims have thronged main roads across the country to join the mourning processions to commemorate the Chehlum anniversary of Imam Hussain-Martyrs of Karbala.
Imam Hussain Chehlum Arbaeen
Although entire Pakistan and mainly its big cities witnessed mammoth mourning congregations, Karachi outnumbered them.
In Karachi, Main mourning congregation held in Nishtar Park where renowned scholar Allama Raza Daudani spoke.
He highlighted the salient features of sacred life and sacrifices of Imam Hussain (AS) and his followers.
Then, the biggest procession of Pakistan began reaching main MA Jinnah Road.
Clad in black suits, Shia mourners are beating their chests. They are raising the slogans of Labbaik Ya Hussain (AS). Mourning organizations (matami anjumans) are reciting nohas (epic poetry relating to Karbala and martyrs of Karbala).
Models of Islamic flags to commemorate the martyrdom of flag-bearing commander Hazrat Abbas (AS) of Imam Hussain’s army of 72 faithful, are also fluttering during the mourning processions.
Mourning processions of Chehlum have been boruhgt out in every nook and corner of Pakistan.
Like Shia Muslims, Sunnis also respect Imam Hussain (AS) in high esteem. Many organize their programmes to commemorate the anniversary of martyrdoms of Imam Hussain (AS ) and his companions.
However, Allama Ahmed Iqbal Rizvi leads the Zohrain prayers near mausoleum of founder of Pakistan Mohammad Ali Jinnah. Azadars (mourners) offer prayers there.
Most importantly, Shia Muslims go to pilgrimage of sacred shrines of Islamic saints. Although they regularly visit shrines of infallible Imams of Shia Islam, yet 20th Safar remains reserved for pilgrimage of Karbala.
Notably, Zaireen (pilgrims) regularly visit holy shrines of infallible Imams of Shia Islam in Iraq, Iran and Medina . But, they commemorate anniversary of 40th day (Arbaeen in Arabic and Chehlum in Urdu) of martyrdom anniversary of Ashura on 20th Safar.
Ashura to Arbaeen
Factually, Ashura too remains a special day of scared mourn in Shia Islam. That’s because of matchless martyrdoms of Imam Hussain-led Martyrs of Karbala.
However, infallible leaders of Shia Islam had emphasised on pilgrimage of sacred shrine of Imam Hussain on Arbaeen.
Hence, Shia Muslims try their level best to reach Karbala (Iraq) on 20th Safar.
And those who cannot go to Karbala, participate in Arbaeen walk in their native cities and towns across the world. That remains Shia Islamic tradition.
Notably, in Pakistan and India, Arbaeen is called Chehlum, the 40th day.