There seems to be a persistent effort to portray the tragic death of Zaireen as a “stampede”. Regardless of whether a structure collapsed or not, we simply cannot absolve management for their poor handling of the situation.
The Bani Tawarij have done this ritual for centuries without an event of this scale in terms of casualties.
We can contest whether structures collapse or not. But we must also acknowledge the sad reality that some lobby groups are obsessed with blaming the victims (Zaireen) while giving a free pass to management.
Whether a structure collapsed or not, we cannot ignore that the space for Zaireen has been chocked off by those who are intent on creating a conflict between the Farz ritual of Salat and the Devotional ritual of Ziarat.
We are seeing this conflict lobby happen at different points and we first saw this lobby in Yazeed’s army when they wanted to hastily slaughter Imam Hussain (as), the beloved grandson of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Yazeed’s Army was in a hurry to slaughter Imam Hussain so that they could get back to praying Asar prayers where they will have to invoke the name of the Holy Prophet.
Woe be on to those who place these two essential rituals in conflict.
Inevitably one of these nonsensical basements (sardaabs) collapsed during the Ashura processions, for decades the ONLY intent and purpose of these shrines was to ensure smooth movements of throngs of mourners, it’s in the last 6-7 years when massive holes have been dug under courtyards with some fetish obsession with ‘sardab’ to create a two-pronged deadly hazard,
A) the roofs of these basements WILL collapse with the sheer weight of people, and
B) stairs and escalators are huge obstacles blocking basic circulation.
Currently 70-80% space is usurped in the name of ‘namaaz’ in shrines as well as in ‘mabain’ (in between) two harams the entire space is choked for namaaz and free boarders practically living there, even right at all the gates of shrines people are permanently parked, it’s like if Saudis start allowing hajis to live in the path of tawaf and create massive ‘mussalas’ (prayer halls) in the path of ‘saee’ sawa-marwa hills, even Saudis have managed to understand the dynamics of pilgrimage to make hajj safer, but the jokers in Iraq have deliberately thrown away the wisdom of their ancestors and turned these shrines into death traps during special days with outrageously bad management and more crucially by not understanding the real purpose of the pilgrimage which is to do ziyarat and mourning rituals which require the entire Harums and the space in between to be completely obstacle-free, which it was until 2009-2010 before this incompetent and confused madness descended on them.
“During one of the rituals inside the shrine of Imam Hussein in Karbala city called the “Tweireej run,” the roof of a basement collapsed leading to the deaths and injuries of dozens”, sources.