Reformists renew call for struggle against clergy
The two-day 15th All World Dawoodi Bohra Conference concluded in Udaipur on March 12, after a successful convention attended by reformist Dawoodi Bohras from all over the country. This event, held at Lok Kala Mandal, was organized by the Central Board of Dawoodi Bohra Community (CBDBC) with support from the Bohra Youth Jamaat and Bohra Youth Association, Udaipur. more
The Evolution of al-Qāḍī al-Nuʿmān’s Theory of Ismaili Jurisprudence
Shiʿi Ismaili law, codified by al-Qāḍī al-Nuʿmān (hereafter referred to as Nuʿmān) in his enduring work Daʿāʾim al-Islām (The Pillars of Islam) with the approval of the fourth Fatimid Imam-caliph al-Muʿizz li-Dīn Allāh, is almost a millennium old.1 Ever since its promulgation, most probably in 349/960 as the official code of the Fatimid empire, the Daʿāʾim has reigned supreme, particularly with the Mustaʿlī- Ṭayyibī Ismailis of Yemen and the Indian subcontinent after the fall of the Fatimids in Egypt in 561/1171. The Evolution of al-Qāḍī al-Nuʿmān’s Theory of Ismaili Jurisprudence as Reflected in the Chronology of his Works on Jurisprudence (PDF).
The wretched of the Bohra commumity
The Bohra community at present is passing through a period of turmoil. (It was true in the early 80s when the book was written as it is now in the late 90s.) Many members of this community, especially those who have taken part in the rebellion against the authoritarian Bohra priesthood, are undergoing intense suffering and mental torture. more
No separation please, we are Dawoodi Bohras
Anyone who has tried to argue the Bohra reformist case is sooner or later met with this response: if you have problems why don't you separate and start your own 'religion'. This response is typical of a mindset that's best captured by the cliché: "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen." more
Bohra issues: archive of eye-opening articles and posts

This website and Forum have many interesting and thought-provoking posts submitted by various members over a period of many years, and which are difficult to locate. We have gathered this material in one place to provide easy access, and a starting point. Do yourself a favour, read this today.

Islam and modern age
Every religion prescribes its own prayer system, Islam also does. Every religion has its own unique system and it is this uniqueness which is precious. Islam prescribes its prayer system without challenging prayer systems of other religions as it recognises the uniqueness of prayer systems of other religions. more
Religion and economic justice
It is usually thought that religion is on the side of establishment and vested interests – economic as well as political and it can never become a resource for justice. more
Ramzan, iftaar and nostalgia
During the Cold War American presidents had a handy way to manipulate the masses. All they had to do was cry out “Russians are coming, Russians are coming” and the gullible Americans would be spooked out of their wits. Similarly, there is a way to spook the Muslims? No, it’s not “the Americans are coming”, although that is more terrifyingly true than one can imagine. I’m referring to something closer to home, something integral to their faith. more
Farzana Doctor: Making the write choice
Her mother died when she was eleven, and she remembers vividly the commotion that followed. The argument, she recalls vaguely, was of religious nature, something to do about burial. Farzana wanted those people, those angry voices to go away, leave her in peace. This encounter with religion was not a happy one. It seared her young mind. Read full article (external link)
  • News & Events
    Features
    Bohra scholar who speaks truth to power
    On a cool December morning I knock on the door of a house in a posh Los Angeles county. A diminutive man opens the door. He is Ismail K. Poonawala, former professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at UCLA. There is renovation going on in the house, Prof. Poonawala apologises for the mess. We make small talk as he gives me a tour of his study, it is lined with books on three sides, the fourth is held up by glass doors overlooking the Pacific Ocean in a distance. more
    Islamic perspective
    To the Islamic orthodoxy science is still dangerous
    I cannot quite decide which is the more dangerous of the two: George Bush and his obsession with ensuring U.S. global military dominance or the exploding power of brutal fundamentalist religious forces in countries such as mine. more
  • Bohras and Reform
    21st Century and the Bohra reform movement
    In the opening address Dr. Asghar Ali Engineer described in detail the various aspects of the Bohra reform movement. He said that the reform movement in the Dawoodi Bohra community started at beginning of 20th century on the issue of modern secular education. more
    On the Dawoodi Bohra Reformist Struggle: Interview with Abid Adeeb
    The Dawoodi Bohras, ethnic Gujaratis, are a roughly million strong group of the Mustalian branch of the Ismaili Shia Muslims. They are controlled by an elaborate hierarchy of priests, headed by the dai-e mutlaq, who claims to be the representative of the 21st imam of the community, who is believe to have gone into seclusion or ghayba in the eleventh century. Faced with stern Sunni opposition, the 24th dai of the community shifted to Gujarat in the twelfth century. The present dai, Syedna Burhanuddin, is the 52nd dai of the community, and this year he will celebrate his 100th birthday. more
    Multimedia
    Interviews and talks
    Few people understand what the reform movement is about. They think reformists are against the Dai. This is not true. Check out a series of long-ranging interviews and talks to understand why reformists are fighting and what they are fighting for. more
    Your story
    › Tell us your story, write to us.
    How can we stop Kothar’s juggernaut?
    I was born in 1939 in a Dawoodi Bohra family. Having been brought up in a traditional Bohra household and later having migrated to North America I ensured that my children were raised in the same tradition. I taught them to read, write and recite Arabic, how to perform wudhu and offer prayers, explained Islam and its sects down to what we are as Dawoodi Bohras. more