Pakistani Shia Ismaili industrialist sends sapling for shade to pilgrims in Iraq.
Notably, octogenarian Mohammedi Durbar sent thousands of saplings to Iraq to bring shade to pilgrims.
Pakistani Shia Ismaili industrialist
Interestingly, he found his calling with the idea he formed when his relatives returned from a holy site with sunburn.
50K trees for Arbaeen walk shde
Therefore, he wants to plant nearly 50,000 trees along the entire 80-km (50-mile) pilgrimage route between Iraq’s holy cities of Najaf and Karbala.
Shia Muslims walked from Najaf to Karbala to observe Arbaeen anniversary at the holy shrine of Imam Hussain in Karbala. They walk most of the way under a baking sun.
Rs25 million project
Durbar, a member of the Dawoodi Bohra sect of Shia Islam, estimates it will take three years to plant all of the trees. Furthermore, he said it would cost 25 million rupees ($160,000), which he is paying.
His grandson and daughter-in-law, who returned to Pakistan tanned and with photographs showing a barren landscape.
Immediately, he realised no shade there. Then, he travelled to Iraq, spoke to officials and got permission for his project. The latter promised for care of the trees. He also successfully planted some trees in Najaf to see if they could thrive there.
First shipment on way
A first batch of 9,800 saplings of eight types of trees, up to eight months old, set off from Karachi by truck on Friday, for their journey across Iran to Iraq.
The shipment delayed about a month because of anti-government protests in Iraq and last minute visa delays.
The trees will spend the winter in a nursery in Baghdad, with the planting due to begin in March.
Successful tree plantation plan
Moreover, 85 year old Bohra Ismaili Shia said that about a dozen people would plant the trees, with the help of small digger he is also sending from Pakistan.
Although he remains unsure of his life to see pilgrims walking under his trees, but he knows he has found his calling after a lifetime in industry.
“I thank God, at this age, he has put me on the right path,” he said.