In the presence of a board of religious, cultural and academic figures and representatives of the supreme religious authority in Najaf in addition to two figures from the Indian Parliament and a large gathering of believers and lovers of the Ahl al-Bayt (peace be upon them), the annual cultural festival of the Commander of the faithful (peace be upon him) held under the slogan "the Commander of the Faithful (peace be upon him) the proof on people and the guider to the wisdom" by the Iraq's shrines under the auspices of the al-Abbas's (p) holy shrine in the Indian City of Calcutta in its oldest Hussayniyat of Fadl al-Nisa, has concluded its first phase in Calcutta, to be resumed in the city of Chernih on Sunday.
The ceremony began with a recitation of verses from the Holy Quran and recitation of Surat Al-Fatihah in memory of the believers from the Shiites of the Commander of the Believers (peace be upon him) and the martyrs of Iraq in particular. Followed by the word of the Iraq's holy shrines delivered by Sheikh Mustafa Abi Tabooq the head of religious affairs at the holy shrine of Imam Ali (peace be upon him).
Followed by a welcoming speech of the Indian Parliament Member Nadim al-Haq (Calcutta representative in Parliament) and of his fellow member of the Indian Parliament, Mr. Sultan al-Haq, who is also an Indian Parliamentarian representing Calcutta, thanking everyone who participated in the establishment of this festival.
Then came the speech of Dr. Mohammed Hafeez Rahman bin Mohammed Awais, assistant professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University in the Indian capital New Delhi. Followed by Hajj Agha Sultan from the Indian city of Bangalore, one of the coordinators of the festival in its previous session held in the city mentioned above.
Then there was a speech of the representative of the supreme religious authority in the city of Lucknow, India, delivered on his behalf by his elder son, Mr. Farid, who has expressed his deep thanks to the holy shrines that suffered the hardships of travel in order to attend and commemorate the birth anniversary of the Commander of the Believers (peace be upon him), In India for the fifth year in a row. He also called on the attendees to the importance of adhering to the Book of Allah and the Prophet's household (peace be upon him and upon his holy Household).
After that, the draw of the participants in the competition of the festival of the Commander of believers (peace be upon him) was conducted to make 15 participants win full travel cost of Ziyarat to the shrines of Iraq, 10 of which are paid by the al-Abbas's (p) holy shrine and 5 by the holy shrine of Imam al-Hussayn (peace be upon him).
The ceremony also included poetry breaks and stanzas about Ahl al-Bayt (peace be upon them). This phase of festival was concluded by honoring the holy shrines with the festival's shield, and all those who have contributed in the success of this festival.