Original Articles

Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims of Indianapolis host blood drive, with message of peace and solidarity

Blood donors begin lining up outside the blood mobile. Sat, Sep 15th, 2012, Muslims gathered at Zainabia Community Center, a Shia Mosque to honor the victims of 9/11 by donating blood as part of the second annual nationwide “Muslims For Life” Campaign organized by the Shia Muslim Community and the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. The campaign’s goal is to collect 11,000 bags of blood. (Michelle Pemberton/The Star)

On Saturday, 15 September 2012, dozens of Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims gathered at the Zainabia Community Center (a Shiite Mosque) on Indianapolis’ Northwestside as a part of Muslims for Life blood drive organized by both communities.

The purpose of the “Muslims for Life” blood drive is to honor the victims of 9/11 and spread the message of peace.

The event was organized by the Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslim communites of Indianapolis Indiana USA. The organizers described it both a gesture of civic goodwill and a counter-response to the violent anti-U.S. demonstrations that broke out last week by Takfiri Salafists and other radical Muslims in Libya, Egypt and other countries.

The turnout of more than 30 donors, most of them Muslims, was more than the local blood center’s bus could handle during the two-hour collection in the parking lot of the center on West 56th Street.

Dr. Asia Naqvi, one of the blood drive’s organisers stands in front of the blood mobile. (Michelle Pemberton/The Star)

“The majority of the Muslim community, they believe in peace. They believe in compassion and love for their neighbors and their community,” said Asia Naqvi of Indianapolis.

Naquvi says she hopes all Americans realize the violent acts overseas aren’t representative of all 73 Muslim sects. She says it’s just a small group that’s catching media attention around the world. “We are Shia Muslims; Shias are pro-life”, she says.

“They love such moments,” Naquvi explained. “The movie was made, and the extremists use such things to incite hatred.”

They hope the act of giving of themselves through a blood drive will be a show of solidarity throughout the United States.

“The Muslim community stands with them, and condemns the acts of terrorism,” added Naquvi.

Across the nation, organizers are hoping to help 33,000 Americans with this nation-wide blood drive.

Blood donor Ahmed Ibrahim and his daughter Sakina Ibrahim. (Michelle Pemberton/The Star)

Ahmed Ibrahim, a member of the 2-year-old center, called the blood drive “an example of how we can be good citizens and promote good. It is our way of saying, ‘We love America, too.'”

Ibrahim condemned the anti-American uprising and said members of the community center, which serves as a mosque, don’t support its violence.

“Muslims are Americans just like any other religious group. We’re Hoosiers. … We’re peace-loving people. There’s a perception that Muslims are a violent group. But that’s a fringe group (taking part in the mob violence). When you see the events in the Middle East, as Muslims we feel it does not represent our sentiments.”

The blood drive was part of a national blood drive called Muslims for Life sponsored by Muslim organizations at more than 200 locations across the country.

The Zainabia Muslim center’s president, Mir Zaheer, said the center’s leaders hope to make the blood drive an annual event. It comes as the local Muslim community speaks out against a YouTube video defaming Islam’s religious leader and the Anti-American violence erupting around the world. At the Indianapolis mosque (Zaniabia Centre), members talked about Muslims and bloodshed. Not just the worldwide images that raise fear and suspicion, but the ones that validate the sanctity of life.

That’s the message the Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims wants to share through a blood drive campaign in observance of 9/11. Their goal is to donate enough blood to save as many as 3,300 Americans nationwide.

“Islam really is about peace,” said Muzaffer Ahmad, a member of the Ahmadiyya Community and the local coordinator of the blood drive. Ahmad said it’s aimed to “physically do something to help our fellow Americans and to honor those who lost their lives.”

It also comes as violence spreads across the Middle East in response to an anti-Islamic video that insults Islam prophet Muhammad.

“Muslims for Life” condemn the video and the violence. “It’s totally ridiculous, but this, this reaction…, especially this unfortunate killing of the U.S. ambassador,” said Ahmad, who lives and works in Indianapolis. “I think that people should be fearful because of all these people all over the world that have this negative idea in their head that they need to do something to hurt somebody or scare somebody,” said Ahmad, disappointed in what he says is a break in Muslim teaching.

Tahir Naqvi pumps his fist while giving blood. (Michelle Pemberton/The Star)

Congressman Andre Carson (D-Indiana), a Muslim and a former Indiana counter-terrorism officer, says he too is concerned (by recent events). Carson says the golden rule, to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” transcends all religions and is a good place to launch conversation, not violence.

Phlebotomist Meghan Collins cleans the arm of donor Idris Mccollum, A Gannett employee, before drawing his blood.





About the author

Abdul Nishapuri


Click here to post a comment
  • Just a small correction: Ahmadiyya Muslims is a wrong statement because Ahmadis or Qadiyanis are not Muslims and should not try to call themselves as such. This is LUBP so one can’t expect rationality to prevail thats why despite unanimous declaration of Qadiyanis as Muslims they are called Muslims which is condemnable.

  • First, thanks to all the Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims in Indianapolis for donating blood: it’s a great gesture, and is really appreciated.

    Second, may I suggest that, in America, Sunnis, Shias, and Ahmadiyyas may all call themselves Muslim? After all, Mitt Romney calls his own faith, Mormonism, “Christian” even though I, personally, based on how I define Christianity, would not agree. But, I definitely support his right to call himself Christian. He’s a fine man, and does no dishonor to the term.

    Third, once again, thank you very much for the blood drive.

    Your fellow American in San Francisco


  • @Malik Please just don’t confuse people by sharing links of such videos. Here is a fact all sects believe in Finality of Prophethood and Qadiyanis don’t so it makes only Qadyanis non-muslims. There are minor difference between all sects but not on the issue of the base of Islam i.e Finality of Prophethood…

  • @Abbas Ahmad: That makes all the false 72 sects on one side while one single true sect separate from all of them as per hadith of 72 sects;

    “Seventy-two (of the 73 sects of the Muslim nation) will be in the fire, and only one will be in Paradise; it is the Jama’ah (i.e. Ahle Sunnah Wa Jamaah).” (Abi Dawud, Ad-Darimi, Ahmad)

    By accepting that you are part of 72 sects who are together you put a stamp to your falsehood. Thank you for clarifying it yourself.

  • Jama’ah (i.e. Ahle Sunnah Wa Jamaah): ie the true followers of Sunna ie Ahmadis who are also a jamaat under a single leader.

  • Another version of 72 sects hadith;

    “The people of scripture (Jews and Christians) were divided into 71 or 72 religious sects but My ummah will be divided into 73 sects. All of them will be in the Fire except one and that one will be those who (will follow on what) I and My followers are today.” [Saheeh Muslim, No. 976]

  • From Mahmud Bin Ghilan on the authority of Abdullah bin AMRU: The prophet said: it will come to my nation what came to the Israelites, shoe for shoe and if they (the israelites) had one that came to his mother clearly, then in my nation one that will do that. The Israelites were divided into 72 ways and my nation will be divided into 73, all of them in hell except for one. They said : what is it. He said: Who is on what I am and my companions. [Tirmidhi]

  • “There are minor difference between all sects but not on the issue of the base of Islam i.e Finality of Prophethood…”

    @Abbas Ahmad: Minor differences? Is that why are they killing each other? Doesn’t seem minor when throats are being cut. Just because you say minor doesn’t make it so.

  • The differences among sects are not minor but the only issue they are united on is opposition of one single true sect the Ahmadiyya, apart from that they would gladly cut each other’s throats.

  • Abbas Sahib, why are you so jealous? Sura Falaq is for people like you..You are not ”thekadar’ of Islam. You should ask for God’s mercy and we do same for you. Ahmadiyyat is a blessed seed planted by ALMIGHTY ALLAH. It is bound to flourish and by
    the grace of ALMIGHTY ALLAH, you are bound to be failed and ‘NA MURAD’ amen

  • Abbas sahib, you are more like ‘damaghbandi’ instead of deobandi. Ahmadis are the only one who believe in Khatam e nabuwat in true sense. The word is ‘khatam’ and not urdu word ‘ khatum’. Just a clarification. May God bless you

  • Could you please provide a list or proof of the assumption that christians and jews were divided into 71 or 72 sects and also a list of 72 sects of muslims ?

  • @Malik Your arguments are simply ridiculous…

    You talk about the Hadiths which says 1 sect is right and 72 are wrong… O.k Here we go… Islam came to the world in 610 AD and Qadiyaniat in 1890(If i am not wrong) assuming that Qadiyanis are that one rightful sect< there were no muslims for 1200 years. Oh come on.. You can only confuse people and thats the only way Qadiyanis try to argue as they can't argue on facts…

  • Muslims sects are cutting their throats for political reasons.. The sect leaders hate the others and then there are proxy wars of Iran and Saudi Arabia which is fueling the situation. Otherwise the differences are minor. They all agree on the non-muslim status of Qadiyanis without a shadow of a doubt….

  • Qadiyaniat the fastest growing community on earth! Joke of the year. As a matter a fact more people are being exposed to the dirty propaganda of Qadiyaniat but the Muslims are also doing their best to expose the fitna of Qadiyaniat…

    Qadiyaniat has strong support from its creator, British government and the HQs of both Qadiyani groups are operating in protection of British Government…. without its support Qadiyaniat would have died now…

  • All the links of the videos that you are giving are merely Qadiyani propaganda… Qadiyani propagandist sitting in London, edit the videos of Muslim scholars in such a way that only a certain sentence which suits Qadiyaniat is included in the video out of context. If YOutube was not blocked in Pak, I would have shown you how…

  • @daud Munawar you can call me whatever you want but I consider it to be apart of my faith to expose those who don’t believe in finality of Prophethood… Qadiyanis consider all Muslims Kafir, This is what Zafarullah said in a Karachi rally and Thats why he did not attend Funeral of Quaid-e-Azam….

    Qadiyanis falsely claim that they are muslims but their founder has said a lot of wrong things about the Holy prophet PBUH His companions and wives which is disgusting. Books of Mirza Qadiyani are written in Urdu, arabic and Persian and I am sure not a common Qadiyani has read all of his books because If they read them they will revert back to Islam the very Moment

  • Abbas Ahmad@All the Muslim sects have minor differences even though they are so divided. All these Arab countries have american bases and they are falling over each other to help American and israilis to defeat Iran. By the grace of Allah ahmaiyat is the fastest growing sect at the moment and people like you burn in thier own jealously. Muslim countries who destroyed Iraq, Libya and now they are destabilizing Syria. Of course they have minor differences. People like you live in the heavens of fools so Much for Muslim ummah.