Abdullah Shah Ghazi

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Abdullah Shah Ghazi (Arabic: عبد الله شاه غازى‎) is widely revered in Pakistan. The Mausoleum and Dargah of Abdullah Shah Ghazi (see Abdullah Shah Ghazi Mausoleum) is located in Clifton[1] neighbourhood of Saddar Town in Karachi.


There are two versions about Abdullah Shah Ghazi.

The first version states that Abdullah Shah Ghazi was Syed Abu Muhammad Abdullah Al Ishtar from the lineage of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad from the linage of Hasan ibn Ali.[citation needed] According to historian Suhail Zaheer Lari, he was the son of Muhammad al-Nafs al-Zakiyya.[2] He was born in Medina in 720 and arrived in Sindh in 760 as a merchant and brought with him a large number of horses purchased from Kufa, Iraq. He was given a warm welcome as he belonged to a saadat family, the noblest in Islam.

He died in 773 near the sea while dressed in war attire. He was buried atop a hill in Karachi, where his remains remain. Up to 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 the devotional attention. The shrine expansion and pilgrims attracted the festivities and music Qawwali. 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 bombed in 2010 by militant Salafis who believe that Sufism encourages ‘negative innovations’, Grave worshiping and negates the purity of Islam.[3]


Inside the shrine of the Abdullah Shah Ghazi, patron saint of Karachi

In December each year, a great festival is held at the shrine for 3 days marking the anniversary of Abdullah where Muslims from all factions come in large number. The festival is enjoyed even by some non-Muslim as the saint is revered by all for preaching love, tolerance and politeness.

Abdullah Shah Ghazi's shrine in Karachi is dated back to 1400 years ago, his brother, Syed Misry Shah, who is also buried along the coastline in Karachi, is also remembered as a saint.

Many people claim to have been granted their wishes at the shrine and it is the centre for people who throng the shrine all year round. Every year marks the Urs (festival) at the shrine for 3 days (dates: 20-22 Dhu al-Hijjah - 12th month of the Islamic calendar), marking the anniversary of Abdullah Shah Ghazi.

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External links[edit]


  1. ^ Asim Butt (August 11, 2005). "Pakistan's mystical Islam thrives". BBC News. Archived from the original on May 8, 2009. Retrieved June 6, 2008. 
  2. ^ Lari, Suhail Zaheer. A History of Sindh. Oxford University Press, USA. 1995. [and OUP Pakistan. 1996.]
  3. ^ Abdullah Shah Ghazi: The saviour saint