[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:] Ettelaat

[Date:] Tuesday, 19 Ordibehesht 1334 [10 May 1955]

[Issue No.:] 8673


The Fight Against the Baha’i Sect Was Discussed in a Private Session of the National Assembly

The Speaker of Parliament Said:

“We Agree With People in Suppressing This Sect, But in Such Matters, We Must Act With Full Study and Foresight.”

Attendance of the Government Representatives in a Private Meeting

The deputy prime minister stated, “I also believe this sect is a misguided group, but there are hands working to catch fish from the muddy water.” After the prayer of Ayatollah Borujerdi in the Grand Mosque of Qom, in the presence of thousands of people, things were said about the Baha’i sect and the closing of the Haziratu’l-Quds.

Telegram of the Emperor and Ayatollah Borujerdi to Ayatollah Behbahani

Baha’i Activity Will Be Banned In All the Cities.

An order was given by the Ministry of Interior in this regard to the governorates. The officers in charge of the Ministry of Interior are in charge of preventing Baha’is from operating in the country.

Today, our correspondent reported from Qom by telephone that, during [the month of] Ramadan, Ayatollah Borujerdi holds prayers at noon and evening in the Grand Mosque, which is one of the oldest mosques in Qom. Many people follow His Holiness and after performing the prayers, Mr. Borghei, the famous preacher, goes to the pulpit and gives lectures on religious matters in the presence of thousands of listeners.

Yesterday afternoon, Mr. Borghei, following the performance of the evening prayers by Ayatollah Borujerdi, went to the pulpit and presented a detailed history of the creation of the Baha’i sect and expressed his satisfaction with the closure of the Haziratu’l-Quds, the centre of their propagation in Tehran. He gave a comprehensive explanation about the need for this action and thanked His Highness Homayouni, who has always been a supporter and promoter of the holy religion of Jafari, and thanked the military governor of Tehran and the officials who occupied the centre.

He gave a comprehensive explanation of the necessity for this action and thanked His Majesty the King who is always a supporter and promoter of the holy religion of Jafari, and the military governor of Tehran and the agents who occupied the centre.

Our correspondent added at the end of his telephone report that, in these two days when the news and rumours of the occupation of the Haziratu’l-Quds was published in the press and the general public is happy with this action, many telegrams have been sent by the public expressing gratitude to the Tehran authorities.

Activities in the Cities

The news and information that has reached Tehran from the cities and provinces in the last few days generally indicates that extensive activities have been launched by government officials in provinces and cities to prevent Baha’i propaganda, and the [government] agents are seriously preventing the activities of the followers of this sect.

Informal Sect

The recent rumours indicated that the governors had been instructed by the Ministry of Interior to prevent Baha’i propaganda and activities. In this regard, our correspondent contacted Dr. Parviz Khanlari, deputy minister of interior, and he said, in response to our reporter’s question, “The general duty of the Ministry of Interior and its officials is to prevent the activities and propaganda of informal groups. Preventing the activities of this sect is not new, because according to state regulations, such a sect is not recognized in Iran. In 1329 [1950/1951], the then prime minister gave an order to the Ministry of Interior to inform the governors and the governors general that government officials have no right to name the Baha’i sect in their correspondence, because this sect is not official in Iran; this order of the prime minister was communicated to the governors and governors general in a circular. Our laws stipulate that in addition to Islam, which is the official religion of the imperial state, there are three religious minorities in Iran. [Aside from] these three sects, no other sect in Iran, regardless of its name or title, is recognized by law, and government officials are required by law to prevent such sects from operating.”

At the end, [the deputy minister of interior] said that this trend had long been common throughout the country and is not a new affair.

Telegram to the Emperor and Ayatollah Borujerdi

On the occasion of the occupation of the Haziratu’l-Quds by law enforcement officers, two telegrams were sent by Ayatollah Behbahani to His Majesty the King and to Ayatollah Borujerdi. The text of the two telegrams reached the attention of our esteemed readers yesterday, and now the response of His Majesty and Ayatollah Borujerdi to the telegram from Ayatollah Behbahani can be viewed by the dear readers as follows:

Royal Satisfaction

Your Honour, Hojjatol-Eslam Haji Mirza Seyyed Mohammad Behbahani, may your mercy be perpetual,

Your telegram containing congratulatory notes and sincere prayers was viewed and caused our gratitude and satisfaction.

As you have heard from us many times, you have always considered yourself obliged to implement the rules of Islam. We ask God Almighty for your continued success.

17 Ordibehesht 1334 [8 May 1955] – The King

The Telegram from His Holiness Ayatollah Borujerdi

Tehran – Your Honour Hojatoleslam and Muslims, Mir Seyyed Mohammad Behbahani, may your blessing be perpetual,

Your telegram indicating His Majesty’s action to close down and seize a place that was built solely for anti-Islamic propaganda―which naturally causes national disunity and anti-independence of the country and weakens the monarchy―made me delighted.

Of course, the general Muslims of the world and the learned scholars, [as well as] the Imam of the Age, may our soul be a sacrifice to Him, are pleased with this action.  

It can be said that, according to the wise men of the country, it is one of the inevitable duties of the monarchy. May God protect the sacred religion of Islam and the kingdom of Iran from the harm of the enemies and disruptors and safeguard your blessed being for the Muslims.

Hosein Tabatabaei