Referring to the beginning of the New Year in Iran’s solar Hijri Calendar that matches March 21, the most influential Iranian Sunni leader called the last year a critical part of history with many ups and downs for Iranians, and hoped that the Iranian people will determine their destination in the current year.
Regarding the continuous demonstrations in Zahedan for nearly six months after Friday prayers, Shaikh Abdol-Hamid criticized the fundamental problems of the country and referred to wrong foreign and domestic policies.
He was talking to the people of Zahedan in the first Friday of the holy month of Ramadan that was equal to March 24, 2023. He said: “The legal and peaceful protests should not have been suppressed last year. The people of Iran came to the streets due to severe pressures and because of livelihood, and economic problems. Our people left behind difficult circumstances and suffered from so many problems. Many have lost their investments and their hands are empty. Problems are not only economic, but there are problems in policies, too.”
Believing that the peaceful protest is due right of the people, the president of Darululoom Zahedan said: “People feel that many of their national capital have been lost. The wrong foreign policies hit the economy and led people to protest and raise their voices. The constitution allows peaceful protests. People protested according to the law. Unfortunately, they were treated harshly.”
“Killing and making the demonstrators martyred was a blunder of the state in 1401 AH. Officials should have listened to the people, talked to them, and solved their problems. So many people were killed and martyred in the last year. The people of Zahedan were martyred in this place. These incidents showed that the officials of our country commit many mistakes. Killing people is the biggest sin,” said the Iranian top Sunni leader during his Friday sermons.
He continued: “Everywhere in the world, governments listen to the protesters and do not kill them. The hardest action is that they arrest, and then free them. In these protests, many people were killed. It is a big mistake. People should not be targeted with a war bullet. The nation tolerated the system with its weaknesses for 44 years, now they should be tolerated, not tortured in prison. I do not want to explain the details. It was really painful when I informed of such issues.”
“Many people are mourning in this Nowruz and the New Year at the graves of their dears who lost their lives in the recent protests; while celebrating Nowruz is an ancient national culture of Iranians, and these days are happy days for them. The Iranian nation is one of the best nations in the world. People tolerated us and ignored our weaknesses; they should be dealt well,” said Mawlana Abdol-Hamid.
“Give up to the will of the people and respect them,” he urged.
The country’s sick economy will not change until there is no change in domestic and foreign policies
The famous Iranian Sunni scholar went on to challenge the wrong policies of the country, saying: “The economic problems rooted in political issues. The policies are wrong. The sick economy of the country will not improve until there is no any change in foreign and enteral policies. Economic issues are rooted in political problems. To solve these problems, use the opinions of elites and consult with different strata of people. We should be careful how the next generation and history would judge about us. Islam teaches us that we should be merciful to people.”
“We all are in pain when we see that the people of Iran are in trouble. We hope that the New Year will be a blessing year; a year when the Iranians overcome all the problems. The fact is that all Iranians including women and youth are suffering from problems. Some mistreated with women; this made us painful. Mistreatment against women and youth was agonizing. You have to compensate these shortcomings,” said the Friday Imam of Zahedan.
In free elections, people choose their capable candidates
Urging that most elections in Iran were selections, the Iranian top Sunni cleric said: “We have had elections in the past, but they were not real elections, they were selections and appointments; we voted to elect representatives and presidents, but they were selected in fact. People have choices in free election to elect among competent candidates. They vote for their own candidate. However, in Iran, the Guardian Council selects some weak people who are not capable to run the country.”
Imam of the Grand Makki Mosque expressed his opinions and said: “In real elections, people are free to choose. This is not the election that candidates are already determined. In a real election, people choose the capable people, regardless of their religion and sect. In Muslim majority countries, if a Muslim was capable, he has a priority; otherwise anyone can occupy the post in my opinion.”
“We see that some officials engage their close relatives, including their children, sons-in-law and daughters-in-law. In many cases, strong and competent managers were rejected, and weak managers were appointed. Such treatments caused a great dissatisfaction in the country. If there were no treasures and capitals in Iran, half of the population would have died from hunger today. Allah has given this nation resources, capital, and talent. We hope Allah Almighty to solve the problems in this New Year,” Shaikh Abdol-Hamid added more.
Not in the past, not now, I ask you something for myself
The eminent Iranian Sunni leader further said: “I am going to tell the authorities that the problems of the country are not only economics. The problems are wrong internal policies. I am a well-wisher to the nation and the government. I did not want anything for myself in the past, neither now I want anything. I want nothing, but the pleasure of Allah Almighty.”
Shaikh Abdol-Hamid said in his last points: “For us, we do not raise religious issues. Religion is important, but we think on humanity and national interests. They are the people of Iran and have the citizenship right. Everyone should have freedom and speak. Do not count the performance of Muslims to the religion. If you see a mistake in my deeds and in the people around me, do not give it to the account of religion, but they are personal issues.”
In the first part of his Friday speech of Zahedan, Shaikh Abdol-Hamid inspired Muslims to increase their good deeds in the holy month of Ramadan. He considered the piety as the biggest result of fasting and urged on avoiding all kinds of sins and returning to the Allah Almighty.
The prominent Sunni cleric of Iranian Balochistan encouraged the people of the province to show a good behavior with the Nowruz travelers and respect them.