[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]
[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]
[Personal information has been redacted.]
[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]
[Newspaper:] Nabard-e Mellat
[Date:] 2 Khordad 1334 [24 May 1955]
[Issue No.:] 119
Interview of a Parliamentary Reporter (Nabard-e Mellat) with Mr. Haj Seyyed Ahmad Safaie, Clerical Member of the National Consultative Assembly
…Last week’s interview by our parliamentary reporter (Nabard-e Mellat) is provided below for consideration of the loyal readers.
Question 1 - At the beginning of the holy movement, Your Honour prepared a plan against atheism and the illegal perverse sect known as Baha’i, which, in four articles, explicitly and clearly determined the fate of this destructive gang forever. In Your Excellency’s opinion, what steps has this plan taken and what will be its fate?
Answer - This plan was signed by 27 esteemed members of the National Consultative Assembly, and with the good intentions of the esteemed members, I imagine it will be approved by an overwhelming majority in the Assembly when it is proposed. However, I believe that this plan was signed by a majority of the members before it was submitted.
Question 2 - Who has signed this plan so far, and are there any elements in the parliament that will sabotage this holy plan?
Answer - The persons whose names are mentioned have signed the plan: Ghanatabadi, Seyyed Mostafa Kashani, Abdol Saheb Safaie, Ameli, Behbahani, Amidi Nouri, Arsalan Khalatbari, Kazem Sheibani, Bozorgnia, Heydar Ali Boroumand, Farid Araki, Khakbaz, Dr. Jazayeri, Foroud, Dr. Amir Niroumand, Pour Sartip, Kharazi, Ghazanfari, Mir-Ashrafi, Shahrokhshahi, Ebrahimi, Qareh Gowzlu - Sadegh Naraghi, Pirasteh, Yarafshar, and Seyyed Ahmad Safaie. I must also say that because sabotaging this plan is against the constitution and the holy religion of Islam and the feelings of the Muslim nation of Iran, I do not think anyone will sabotage it.
Question 3 - Your Excellency, do you have regular contact with Grand Ayatollah Borujerdi in this great struggle?
Answer - The leader of this holy movement is Ayatollah Borujerdi. I have always been in touch with His Holiness, and whenever I have been honoured to be in the presence of His Holiness, he has complained about the crimes of the Baha’i sect and has instructed me to fight them legally.
Question 4 - What is the opinion of Grand Ayatollah Borujerdi on this plan?
Answer - I found him completely in agreement with the principles of this plan, as I know the ayatollah has sent a message to a group of members and has asked them seriously to agree to the plan.
Question 5 - In your opinion, was the government’s policy in fighting these corrupt elements in line with the holy goal of the Muslim nation of Iran, or was more seriousness expected from the government in this regard?
Answer - The work done to fight this sect in order to harmonize with the demands of the Muslim nation of Iran is commendable; however, these measures are not enough to achieve the sacred and honourable goal of the nation, and the people expect the government and the esteemed members of parliament not to refrain from taking fundamental action in this regard.
Question 6 - What is your opinion about the report that was read by Mr. Alam, the minister of interior, and approved by the members in the open session of the National Assembly?
Answer - As I stated in the private and public sessions of the National Consultative Assembly, the government report is not enough to achieve the goal of Muslims. Such reports will be ineffective if the following three matters do not become lawful: 1. The confiscation of Baha’i public property and propaganda circles; 2. Their dismissal from their offices; 3. The guarantee that their provocation will be punished by sentencing.
Question 7- Has the government’s duty in this great religious and national jihad ended with presentation of the report? From now on, should the parliament do whatever it deems appropriate, or do some government members think it should be the initiator of the next steps?
Answer: As mentioned, the task of the government and the parliament is not over yet. The government and parliament are obliged to work to fight this sect until it reaches its ultimate goal, and whoever from amongst these two who undertake this task and take the initiative, will be honoured.
Question 8 - It is heard that the Baha’is have spent about thirty million rials to carry out their malicious purposes. Do you know about this?
Answer - I do not know this in detail. But as the evidence shows, Baha’is have spent money on their malicious purposes. And by doing so, they have taken over newspapers and equipped them against the Muslims.
Question 9 - What is your opinion about the land and building of the former Haziratu’l-Quds, and how and by what means is it better to use it?
Answer - In my opinion, the property of the Haziratu’l-Quds should be taken from the Baha’is. After doing this, I have no particular opinion and it is safe to use it in any way.
Question 10 – Please explain whether there is any explanation or information about the plan to recognize the perverse Baha’i sect as illegal, in order to enlighten the cynical minds?
Answer - It is obvious that the fight against any disruptive, anti-religious and anti-national sect must be fundamental, and the struggle is fundamental when it is based on the rule of law. I have prepared a plan for the legal struggle against the perverse Baha’i sect, which includes the following four Articles.
Article 1 – The corrupt population of Babis and their affiliates, Azalis and Baha’is, has been declared illegal and against the security of the country.
Article 2 – From now on, membership in this group and pretending to be dependent on it in any way is a crime and the perpetrator is sentenced to two to ten years in solitary confinement and deprivation of civil rights!
Article 3 – The immovable property that is the community centre and affiliated organizations of this population, or the proceeds [income] of which are spent on related affairs of this population, are transferred to the Ministry of Culture to be dedicated to establishing educational organizations and disseminating basic religious knowledge and the principles of godliness.
Article 4 – Individuals from this population who are serving in government departments and their affiliates will be dismissed from government service from this date and will not be subject to the employment law in any way.
Now I will explain about the materials.
Of course, according to the constitution, the Baha’i political party is illegal. In fact, many things that are declared illegal in the constitution, when it comes to action, are legally permissible. The constitution considers the religion of Islam and the Jafari sect to be the official religion of Iran and deems illegal any act contrary to Islamic law. Therefore, the provision, buying and selling and consuming of alcohol is illegal, according to the constitution. Despite this, a law banning intoxicating drinks was passed by the parliament, which, unfortunately, has not yet been implemented.
Some cynical and biased people have made criticism about this plan, to which I have responded in my parliamentary speeches. However, to clarify for the public mind, I will briefly explain:
Some say that this plan is against the Charter of the United Nations, because according to the Charter of the United Nations, all religions are free. In response to this, I must say that the Charter of the United Nations recognizes religions as free, not any disruptive political party. What is certain is that the Baha’is are a political party, not a religious community. This point has a lot of historical evidence. There is no doubt that the establishment of this party was politically motivated. That is why the Baha’is were opposed to the libertarians at the beginning of constitutionalism and were strengthening Mohammad Ali Shah. They were the implementers of the colonial policy of Tsarist Russia. The description of the history of the emergence of this party and its historical events are beyond the scope of this interview.
No wise person doubts that the Baha’is are a political party and follow the materialist school. If any provocative party should be free according to the Charter of the United Nations, the Tudeh Party must also be free and the struggle against this party would be considered contrary to the Charter of the United Nations.
Some say confiscation of Baha’i public property violates Article 8 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Here I have to explain that, according to Article 8 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, no property can be abstracted from the owner except by paying the price. Article 3 of this plan, which deals with the confiscation of Baha’i public property, provides for the payment of a price. Therefore, the plan is flawless in terms of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
In conclusion, I must say that no opportunity should be missed, and no negligence should be allowed in the fight against corrupt and provocative populations. It is certain that negligence in this matter will cause irreparable damage to the country and the government.