SUPERB Editorial in Ushta

Karl K. Sahukar

Dear members,

I give below the editorial note of the 3rd September 2000 issue of the USHTA NEWSLETTER. I am sure, this well written piece will be appreciated by you.


Karl Sahukar

"Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted, the indifference of those who should have known better, and the silence of the voice of justice, when it mattered most, that has made it possible for evil to triumph" in society (Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethopia). In the sordid drama that has preceded this World Congress at Houston, a Chamberlain-like compromise has been brought about. The wheels of history however, grind in an inexorable direction of its own. Chamberlain’s ‘peace with honour’, negotiated with Hitler, brought to mankind, in the 20th century, not just a world engulfed in World War II but the horrors of Auswitch, mass genocide and the scourge of Hitler who ravaged more than half the world. Nazism demanded total allegiance, it brooked no opposition and in its attempt to control the world made them faceless and voiceless. The fate of Europe, in 1939, fellow Zoroastrians, is the fate that awaits the Zoroastrians in North America as it has given Ali Jafarey the official acceptance of FEZANA which he desperately needs to consolidate his rather nebulous Islamic grouping within a Zoroastrian cocoon. Is it not significant that a world congress of the Zoroastrians should become the focal point of such incredible power play?

Do the Parsis who support Ali Jafarey, recognise that the Jafarey group will proceed without scruples, with their long chalked out plan to divide the Zoroastrians of Iranian origin from the Parsis of India? According to Jafarey’s cult, the Parsis are Hinduized in their beliefs and in their culture and of course, have been following a different religion for 3000 years. Now let us look at what the Jafarey cultists have to say about themselves. They of course, have been following the ‘pristine’ religion of ‘Asho Zarathushtra’ and we the original Zoroastrians with our teachings, rituals and practices, have it totally wrong, and the messiah of the new age, Ali Jafarey, is the only one to who divine truth has been revealed.

This fellow Zoroastrians, is a dangerous phenomenon that North Americans are brewing on their own home ground. By inviting Jafarey, FEZANA is offering to the Zoroastrian Youth of North America, a role model which is anththetical to everything that is representative of our faith on two very important grounds: A) Jafarey has disfigured and changed the prayers in the Khordeh Avesta. This is an undisputed fact as revealed on the net. By accepting him as a speaker, the FEZANA board has set the seal on the right of permitting an individual to distort and change our sacred texts. B) Jafarey has been academically dishonest by claiming to hold a PH.D degree from Karachi University. The University has denied awarding a degree to Ali Jafarey. FEZANA, therefore, is lending support to a man of questionable integrity. By accepting him, FEZANA is promoting the Untruth.

On these grounds alone, an un-Zoroastrian precedent has been set by FEZANA. Can we have an apex body of the community promoting the Lie over the “Truth-strong word” of Zarathushtra? Whatever be the political compulsions of the situation, should this be the path to take? FEZANA is not alone in promoting Jafarey, the World Zoroastrian Organization (WZO), which wishes to stake its primacy in Zoroastrian affairs, has for a long time been in the forefront of backing and honouring Jafarey, over the years. The compromise has been a dishonourable one, wrought with deceit, political manoeuvring, brandishing of the sword and threats.

Let us take the principle of inclusion, so well touted by these bleeding heart liberals, to its natural conclusion. Since the Jafarey cultists have been given backdoor acceptance, their next logical demand will be for FEZANA membership. After all, Ali Jafarey, is to quote his own words, the 'Ratu’ of the Zoroastrians and if he has the right to speak at the Zoroastrian congress, when no other non-Zoroastrian has been invited, then his cult has the right to be part of FEZANA. After all, the principle of inclusion must test itself by its very nature, to the finish. I am sure, FEZANA will, with its liberal ‘let’s not displease anyone’ philosophy, go out of its way to accept the Jafarey cult. The next step to follow soon after, will be for Ali Jafarey to stand for FEZANA presidency and we could have him voted in by the North Americans who are so insistent about inclusion.

However remote this may seem, the hijacking of Zoroastrian associations, is the immediate game plan of the Jafareyists; otherwise where else would they find a place under the Sun, certainly not under the banner of Islam? How will they achieve it? By broadening the already existing cultural and linguistic divide between the Iranians and the Parsis. Every effort will be made by the Jafareyists to widen this gulf and increase Iranian hatred towards the Parsis. Unfortunately, a small coterie of Parsis have vociferously used the net to promote Ali Jafarey. This is a stand based on hypocrisy for, how many of them who support him, would for instance, want Ali Jafarey to perform their children’s navjotes or weddings or for that matter, perform their death rites? The Iranian Zoroastrians, on the other hand, must choose whether they owe allegiance to the language and culture of Iran which they share with Ali Jafarey, or do they wish to uphold the religion of Zarathushtra at all costs.

Manekji Limji Hataria, Ardeshir Edulji Reporter, the Panday family, Dinshaw Petit, Kaikhushrow Shah Rokh, Dinshaw Irani, and a host of other Zoroastrians did everything to bring the Iranis and Parsis together at time when Irandian Zoroastrians were ruthlessly persecuted by the Qajars in Iran. Their efforts, are now being consigned to the dustbin of history, by the promotion of Jafareyism.

Perhaps it is worth noting, that among the great and good of Iran, there was pride in being associated with the Parsis. Kaikhushrow Shah Rokh, perhaps the most famous Zoroastrian, addressed himself as ‘a pure Parsi from Kerman’. This is something to think about and lastly in modern times, when Zoroastrian Iranians were stranded in India and Pakistan, it was a Parsi group, Zoroastrian Studies, which initiated, spearheaded and helped the largest single contingent of displaced Iranian Zoroastrians to migrate to North America and certainly not Mr. Jafarey, who in fact, persistently worked against it. It is time for Iranian Zoroastrians and Parsis to unite and sweep out the forces of disintegration or face religious and cultural disintegration. Let North American members of FEZANA not become the architects of disaster and cultural suicide.

This editorial has been written for creating Iranian and Parsi unity and is part of a three-part initiative towards bringing harmony in the Zoroastrian community.

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