It was 11:30 pm on the 26th of June 2018 but the street outside Burhani Bagh, Haidry was bustling with activity as 44 students of the graduating class of Badri High School piled into buses, along with 10 khidmat guzaars and teachers, which were to take them to the Jinnah International Airport for their flight to Najaf.
The excitement in the air was palpable as teary eyed parents bid their children farewell. Some had made their passports for the first time and were excited to sit in a plane. Some were the first in their families to travel to the blessed land of Karbala. Needless to say, it was a thrilling moment as the Fly Dubai flight took off into the early morning skies as dawn broke.
Hearts thumped as the plane touched the Najaf Airport runway at 9 am. After a quick immigration the students were taken to the Faiz e Burhani where they were given luxurious rooms to freshen up. The first time the children stepped into the Haram Mubarak of Maulana Ali AS it was 3 pm. Yet the blinding light of the sun paled in front of the splendor and majesty of the golden-domed premises.
The next four days were spent with Imamat Fajar Namaz being offered at the magnificent Masjid e Kufa where the students also got the opportunity to perform Ziyarat of Mehrab—the place of the martyrdom of Maulana Ali AS, as well as the ziyarat of the Maulana Muslim bin Aqueel AS and Maulana Hani bin Urwa AS.
For the students the experience of connecting history and the riwayaat they had heard all their lives of Maulana Ali AS and his ashaab like Maulana Masiam bin Tamaar AS, Maulana Rushaid ul Hajari and Maulana Kumail bin Ziyad AS was a memorable experience. As they walked through the pillared corridors of Masjid e Kufa and heard the tales of devotion of Ashaab of Maulana Ali AS their hearts filled with awe and gratitude.
On 29th June 2018 the group reached Karbala Moalla. Just entering the Haram Mubarak of Imam Husain AS caused tears to pour down everyone’s cheeks. We could not believe we were finally here in one of the realms of heaven. As our foreheads touched the Zarih of Imam Husain we felt gratitude to have been beckoned to a place where destinies are altered and prayers are answered. The imposing Haram of Maulana Abbas AS left us awestruck.
In the days that followed the students visited the Khaimah Gah where the Zikr of Imam Husain AS, Ahle Bait and Ashaab made everyone weep. We also performed Ziyarat of Nabi Hood AS and Saleh AS, visited Imam Jaffar us Sadiq’s AS Waari and Burhanuddin Maula’s RA farmhouse where the students and other zaireen prayed Imamat Namaz and enjoyed lunch.
On one of the last days in Karbala the students had the good fortune to sit in Huzoorala’s TUS Gurfa Mubaraka and discuss the impact to the trip as well as resolve to make changes in their lives when they returned home. This was one time when they revealed exactly how moved they had been by their experience. Some students talked about praying for their parents who had saved up for months to send them for this pilgrimage. Many thanked the principal Janab Sh Hashim bhai and the school administration for this life changing Ziyarat experience.
This is the second year that the Grade 10 that graduates has been taken for the KUN safar. The concept behind taking this class for this auspicious pilgrimage is for them to be blessed as they enter a momentous phase of the academic life in college as well as their future careers.
In the course of these nine days the students performed Ziyarats and experienced spiritual fulfillment. They learnt to be independent and enjoyed cooperating with each other in simple tasks like keeping their rooms clean and doing the laundry. They learnt discipline and time management and managing money as they travelled and shopped for their loved ones. For these 44 students this was a perfect Ohbat experience and prepared them for the Noha and Aweel that they vowed to perform during Ashara Mubaraka and the entire year round.