Idara e Jaaferiya Official Statement:
Salamun Alaikum Warahmatullah Wabarakato
The Executive Committee of the Idara-e-Jaaferiyaa is pleased to announce that it has arrived at an amicable agreement to settle a long-running dispute with a breakaway group of worshippers.
A disagreement arose as a result of the breakaway group’s insistence on performing self-flagellation with knives on the Idara premises in Tooting. When they were stopped on public health and safety grounds in 2013 the group locked a number of the Idara’s executive committee inside the centre and subjected them to threats of violence in a bid to strong arm them into relinquishing their executive posts and installing a new interim committee consisting of some of their own number.
The violence led to the temporary closure of the Idara and the matter went to court as the executive committee was left with no other way to resolve the dispute due to the breakaway group’s persistence in performing self-flagellation with knives.
Now the executive committee has reached an agreement under which the breakaway worshippers are subject to a Penal Notice such that if anyone does not abide by the words of the order they will be guilty of contempt of court and may be imprisoned and/or fined or have their assets ceased. The undertakings consist of the following:
- Either himself or with any other(s) to engage in any form of self-flagellation resulting in blood letting but not restricted to zanjeer matam, qama zani or blade matam within the Idara-e-Jaaferiya mosque and community centre, 18 Church Lane, Tooting, London, SW17 9PP or within 1 mile thereof;
- Either himself or through or with any other(s) to encourage or to assist anyone else to engage in any act described in (a) above;
- Either himself or with any other(s) to engage in any disorderly conduct at or within 30 metres of the premises of the Idara-e-Jaaferiya mosque and community centre, 18 Church Lane, Tooting, London, SW17 9PP;
- Either himself or through or with any other(s) to encourage or to assist anyone else in any act in (c) above;
The Idara has agreed to this in the interests of community unity and also in view of the breakaway group’s good behaviour over the last year by not performing self-flagellation with sharp implements on Idara premises.
This agreement is a testimony to the determination of the Idara’s Executive Committee to the unity of the community without compromising on the legal obligation imposed on the executive committee.
Mohammed Raza, President of Idara-e-Jaaferiya, said,
“While we are happy that we have achieved our objective of not having zanjeer zani or qama zani within the idara premises because of Health & Safety and building insurance, we are saddened that this process had to take the legal route. If the breakaway group had been as accommodating initially as they are now then we would not have had to go through all this. In order to continue azadari, no trustee can allow this zanjeer zani or qama zani within the Idara-e-Jaaferiya premises to take place as neither the public liability or employer’s insurance will cover this activity on health and safety grounds. People should be aware that any such activities will be met with the full force of the law. I would like to re-emphasise to the momineen (worshippers) that all finances used for these legal procedure have been specifically donated for that purpose and no general or other funds of Idara have been used for this purpose. As a result of the settlement, the Idara will not have to pay anything further whatsoever in relation to the action against this particular breakaway group.
I would like to thank the legal team as well as the Islamic Human Rights Commission without whom we would not have been able to achieve this objective.”