Reflection: Ismaili Imamat – Mandate of the Imam defined

Imams whether they are Shia or Sunni, they have a duty to serve people. 

His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan IV - 49th Imam of the Ismaili Muslims - Silver JubileeThat is the nature of Imamat and, therefore, in countries where the Ismaili Imamat can bring support and help, that is our duty to do so, and we’re very happy to do so in Central Asia, like we are doing so in the Indian sub-continent, we’re doing so in East Africa; in West Africa.

So it’s part of the mandate of any Imam.

But it’s a big mistake to think that you can do development only for Muslim communities. Many countries have mixed communities and therefore you have to do development for all the people within a given area, whether they are Muslim or Christian or Jewish or Hindu or Sikh.

You have what I would call a civil responsibility.

– His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan, Central Asia, 2008

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