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Comments on women land Khadim in trouble

The Anjuman Committee or union of khadims has barred SS Hasan Chishti from guiding visitors to the dargah.

india Updated: Jun 17, 2006 17:51 IST

The khadims or servers at the famous dargah of Moinuddin Chisti in Ajmer have taken action against a member of their fraternity for creating a controversy by issuing 'wrong statements' about the entry of women to the shrine.

The Anjuman Committee or union of khadims has barred SS Hasan Chishti from guiding visitors to the dargah and stopped the payment of his share of offerings at the shrine for a month, Syed Sarwar Chishti, the secretary of the committee, said.

Hasan Chishti had reportedly said in an interview with a TV news channel that Muslim women are "second category" citizens. He had also written a letter to the dargah's nazim or caretaker, saying women should not be allowed to offer prayers with men at the shrine.

"As he had given misleading interviews and statements, he is banned from bringing guests for ziyarat for a month, and his shares (of the offerings) which are evenly distributed among khadims will also not be given to him," Sarwar Chishti said.

"The controversy related to women performing namaz at Ajmer was created by his statements. So, in a meeting held on Friday, we decided to take action against him," he added.

Hasan Chishti had said in his letter to the nazim that separate arrangements should be made for women to offer prayers in the dargah of the 12th century Sufi saint that is visited by hundreds of people every day.

The move to impose restrictions on women visiting the dargah was the outcome of differences between the shrine's management and the association of khadims.

First Published: Jun 17, 2006 17:51 IST