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Imam Husein made supreme sacrifice for democratic legitimacy

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TODAY is the Holy Ashura, the day of noble sacrifice of Imam Husein, the grandson of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SM) on the 10th Muharram 61AH (October 11th 680 AD). The Muslim Ummah observes the day remembering his great sacrifice with solemnity all over the world.

On this day Imam Husein with 71 of his family members and loyal companions were brutally killed at Karbala on the bank of river Euphrates in Iraq in his fight against tyranny and misdeeds of Yazid as his father Mu-awiyah declared him the monarch usurping the power and disowning the authority of the Caliph of the Islamic nation run from Madina.

The Imam traveled the long way from Madina to Iraq to organize the people against Yazid to restore a legitimate government in the province of Iraq and was killed by Yazid forces bringing conspiracy and sedition in running the Islamic nation destroying its foundation to elect the ruler through democratic consensus.

The Muslims remember Ashura with public mourning and prayers and the Shi-ite community particularly brings out Tazia or horse laden cart and perform blood staining street rituals of grief on the occasion. Imam Husein laid his life for the sake of truth over falsehood. The tragedy of Karbala represents a conscious confrontation and courageous resistance to the illegal rise of people to state power by corrupt and dishonest man like Yazid.

Imam Husein took the responsibility upon himself to save the Islamic nation from falling into the hands of an unelected tyrant and as it appears his fight and principle still hold valid from country to country far from his time.  History said, Imam Husein took the decision to travel to Iraq at the invitation of the people of Kufa to save the Caliphate from the tyrannical hands of Yazid who was an evil person posing a serious threat to the Islamic State of Madina.

It is for this reason that the sacrifice of Imam Husein is commemorated annually throughout the Muslim world. It acted as guidance how to resist evils and restore legitimate government -- no matter it demands supreme sacrifice. Imam Husein left behind a rich legacy to be cherished by the Muslim Ummah to seek democratic legitimacy of their governments.

We have also tyrants in our times and Imam Husein has left the message that usurpers' and undemocratic rulers must not have any place and be resisted unitedly to establish the rule of law and justice in public life. Muslims are now globally facing Karbala at many places like Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egypt, Philistines, Turkey and such other regions. The Rohingya Muslims are the latest edition of such misrule. Disunity and domination of vested interest are destroying most Muslim nations and only selflessness and respect to people's authority and aspirations can help us avoid the tragedies. We remember Imam Husein's great sacrifice. May Almighty Allah keep his soul in peace. Ameen.

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