Abdullah Shah Ghazi

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Abdullah Shah Ghazi Calligraphic name

Abdullah Shah Ghazi (Arabic: عبد الله شاه غازى‎‎) was an eighth century Muslim mystic whose shrine is located in the Clifton neighbourhood of Karachi, Pakistan.[1] He is considered to be the patron saint of Karachi.[2]

Life[edit]

Inside the shrine of the Abdullah Shah Ghazi

According to a local historian Suhail Zaheer Lari, being the son of Muhammad al-Nafs al-Zakiyya Abdullah was of the Ahl al-Bayt (member of household of Muhammad).[3] He was born in Medina in 720 and arrived in Sindh in 760 as a horse-trader, and brought with him a large number of horses purchased from Kufa, Iraq[citation needed]. Abdullah Shah Ghazi was said to have been killed by enemies in a forest, with devotees returning his body to a site on the coast where he is said to have first stepped foot in Sindh.[4] He was buried atop a hillock in Karachi along with his brother Misry Shah.[5]

Shrine[edit]

The shrine is situated next to what will be Pakistan's tallest skyscraper.

The tomb is built on a high platform, though the body is kept in a subterranean crypt. The shrine is made of high, square chamber and a green-and-white striped dome, decorated with Sindhi tilework flags and buntings. The shrine attracts a steady stream of devotees who caress the silver railing around the burial place and drape it with garlands of flowers. The shrine is said to be particularly popular with Urdu-speakers and Punjabis.[6]

Up till the early 1950s the shrine was a small hut on top of a sandy hill in Clifton. The shrine was built, expanded and beautified in the mid-1960s as it had begun to attract devotional attention. The shrine was further expanded in the 1970s under Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.[7] The shrine expansion and pilgrims attracted the festivities and music Qawwali. The shrine was then neglected after the Islamization process of the military dictator Zia-ul-Haq.[8] In 2005, Karachi municipal government started an extensive repair, cleaning up and renovation job on the shrine which was completed in 2007. Shah Ghazi shrine was attacked in 2010 by militants who detonated two suicide bombs at the shrine killing 10 and injuring 50.[9]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Asim Butt (August 11, 2005). "Pakistan's mystical Islam thrives". BBC News. Archived from the original on May 8, 2009. Retrieved May 13, 2016. 
  2. ^ Hasan, Arif (27 April 2014). "Karachi's Densification". Dawn. Retrieved 6 December 2016. The other site is the over 1,200-year-old tomb of Ghazi Abdullah Shah, a descendant of Imam Hasan. He has become the patron saint of Karachi and his urs is an important event for the city and its inhabitants. 
  3. ^ Lari, Suhail Zaheer. A History of Sindh. Oxford University Press, USA. 1995, np [and OUP Pakistan, 1996.]
  4. ^ Paracha, Nadeem (23 November 2014). "Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint". Dawn. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  5. ^ Abdullah Shah Ghazi This doesnt seem to be a valid or reliable source/ref cite
  6. ^ Paracha, Nadeem (23 November 2014). "Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint". Dawn. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  7. ^ Paracha, Nadeem (23 November 2014). "Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint". Dawn. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  8. ^ Paracha, Nadeem (23 November 2014). "Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint". Dawn. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  9. ^ Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint