Iran gears up for 30th anniversary of revolution | world | Hindustan Times
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Iran gears up for 30th anniversary of revolution

world Updated: Jan 31, 2009 12:04 IST

Iran paid homage on Saturday to its revolutionary father Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini who landed in Tehran 30 years ago to set off the Islamic revolution.

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his cabinet as well as Iran's military and revolutionary gaurds commanders appeared at Khomeini's mausoleum in southern Tehran to mark his arrival from exile.

Iran's former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani was expected to speak later at the shrine, where hundreds of military personel and policemen were also present.

Each year, to mark Khomeini's triumphant return after 15 years in exile, all schools, trains and boats ring their bells at precisely 9:33 am, the moment his plane touched down in 1979.

The country will begin 10 days of celebrations marking the 30th anniversary of the overthrow of the shah, who ruled Iran for almost four decades but fled just two weeks before Khomeini's return.

This year's anniversary celebrations come barely four months before a presidential election in Iran, with Ahmadinejad seeking re-election for another four year term.