Mowlud-e-Sharif – also called Milad-un-Nabi, which literally means “birth of the Prophet” – has been hosted annually by the Ismaili Council for Afghanistan since 2002, when Mawlana Hazar Imam established Jamati institutions in the country. Similar ceremonies were also held in Baghlan, Bamyan and Badakhshan, each drawing several hundred attendees.
The Kabul ceremony opened with a recitation from the Qur'an-e Sharif and the rendition of a qasida by younger members of the Jamat. Afterwards, various speakers addressed the audience, often recounting stories from the life of Prophet Muhammad, and the importance of his seerat (path) in the lives and faith of people today.
Mohammad Ali Setaigh and Shukria Barakzai, both Members of Parliament, also addressed the gathering. They expressed their admiration of Mawlana Hazar Imam's work and his contribution to Afghanistan. Noting the Ismaili community's tolerant and peaceful reputation, they added that the celebration of such events provided a platform for different communities of interpretation within the ummah to share their views and contribute to a more pluralistic culture in Afghanistan.
Aleem Khalili delivered a message on behalf of his father, His Excellency, Karim Khalili, the Second Vice-President of Afghanistan, who regretted that he was unable to attend in person.
Shair Baz Hakemy, President of the Ismaili Council for Afghanistan, Karim Bakhsh Hashuri, Vice-President of the Council and Ruknuddin Urfani, Chairman of the Ismaili Tariqah and Religious Education Board for Afghanistan, each spoke at the event. They emphasised the importance of pluralism, good ethics, equality, humanity and unity for all.
“It is a glorious and well organised celebration,” commented Din Mohammad Mobariz Rashidi, Afghanistan's Deputy Minister of Culture and Information. Ismaili volunteers from all Jamatkhanas in Kabul worked closely with Jamati institutional committee members to ensure that the event unfolded successfully.
Following the speeches, all the guests were treated to a grand lunch hosted by the Ismaili Council.