53-year old cycles 700 km to pay respects to late Syedna

Home About the Bohras The Dai al-Mutlaq

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Shabbir Ghadiyali with cycle, and friends made along the way

December 4th 2017, Mid-Day, Mumbai

Every year, on the occasion of the death anniversary of the 52nd Dai-al-Mutlaq, the late His Holiness Dr Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, nearly 75,000 Bohras from across the globe, converge on Mumbai to pay respects to their leader. But one man has gone the extra mile to prove his devoutness.

Meet Shabbir Ghadiyali, 53, a resident of Partapur village in Rajasthan, who, has cycled more than 700 km to Mumbai city to attend the event. Ghadiyali is in the city to listen to the sermon of the 53rd Dai, His Holiness Dr Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, at Badri Mahal Masjid in Fort. “I left from the village last Saturday at 2 pm. When the late Syedna had passed away in 2014, I’d come to Mumbai by foot to pay my respects. At the time, it took me 13 days to complete the one-way journey”, he said.

However, this time, Ghadiyali, who owns a small sales and service shop in his village, where he lives with his daughter and son, managed to complete the journey within six days, and was in Mumbai by Friday. “Miraculously, I found myself having completed my journey and reading the jumme ki namaaz (Friday prayers) at Raudat Tahera on Friday. I will now attend the sermon today, before heading back to my village.”

Ghadiyali’s route wasn’t an easy one. He left Partapur on his bicycle on Saturday and made pit-stops at Galiakot, Varodra, Surat and Vapi, before arriving in Mumbai. “I completed the last 190 km stretch from Vapi to Mumbai in one go without stopping as I really wanted to make it on time for the Friday prayers.”