The BT engineer arrives tomorrow pm. Pray for my broadband connection, that it may take its place without blame on my PC.
I blogged last year on the UK's Ashura processions and the associated flagellation with knives, or zanjeer. One of Eduardo Martino's photographs was of a young boy, head streaming with blood after cutting himself to show religious devotion.
Now I read this :
A man has been charged with child cruelty after two teenage boys allegedly took part in a religious ceremony involving flagellation. Syed Mustafa Zaidi, 43, of Station Road in Eccles, Salford, is due before magistrates in Manchester on Friday.
The charge relates to the treatment of two boys, aged 15 and 13, in a traditional Ashura ceremony held at a community centre in Levenshulme. The investigation was carried out with the help of the local Muslim community.
My comment on the incident at the time was : "isn't he a little young to be doing that sort of thing ?" I really don't think something like this should be a matter for the police. A quiet word in the right ear should have been enough, and I hope Mr Zaidi is acquitted. After all, the wounds were self-inflicted in an excess of religious zeal. Mr Plod should take his flat feet out of it, and if the Shias of Manchester wish to cut themselves, it should be restricted to those of full age. I'd think Mr Martino is unlikely to be snapping away next year.
Grand Ayatollah Sistani's comments on the Shia sense of PR are still pertinent.
"People fear from Shiites when they see them doing Zanjeer Zani crazily and from head to toe covered with blood.