[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]


20/8/1318 [12 November 1939]


To the Esteemed Members of Cabinet, may their existence continue


Requesting compassion, I bring to your attention that my son, Mohammad Vatani, married Fatemeh Khamasi on 21/2/1318 [12 May 1939] according to the Baha’i religious requirements. As there was no office designated to register the marriage, in order to perform his duty and report the information [of his marriage] to the authorities during the ceremony, a report and a copy of the civil deed [of marriage], in which the mentioned marriage was registered, were sent to the local Marriage Registry Office, the Ministry of Justice, and the Bureau of Statistics. On 6/8/1318 [29 October 1939] the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Semnan summoned him, and after interrogation, orders were issued for his arrest by the police department, and he was asked to deposit 2,000 rials in cash at the Finance Department. They did not agree with our engaging the services of a reputable lawyer. It is 15 days since he was sent to jail. I request administration of justice and an investigation to be carried out, so that it becomes clear what sin my son has committed, except that he married according to the requirements of his religion and his conscience and has reported his marriage to the relevant authorities. Of course, Your Excellency is aware that the Notary Public Offices only register [the marriages of those who are from the religions of] Islam, Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Judaism, and we Baha’is have never been included in any of the above religions. When the matter is related to conscience, we have to follow our own religion’s practices.  We have to do our duties and report to the authorities the actions we have taken. I am hoping for justice.


Humble Soghra Vatani, mother of Mohammad the prisoner.