Tajik president listed among world’s 500 most influential Muslims

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Tajikistan’s grand mufti Saidmukarram Abdulqodirzoda has also been listed among the world’s 500 most influential Muslims.


This publication, which has been published since 2009, sets out to ascertain the influence some Muslim have on the worldwide Muslim community. Influence is: any person who has the power (be it cultural, ideological, financial, political or otherwise) to make a change that will have a significant impact on the Muslim World. The influence can be of a religious scholar directly addressing Muslims and influencing their beliefs, ideas and behavior, or it can be of a ruler shaping the socio- economic factors within which people live their lives, or of artists forming popular culture.


The publication notes that the Top 50 are dominated by religious scholars and heads of state. Their dominant and lasting influence cannot be denied, especially the rulers, who in many cases also appoint religious scholars to their respective positions. This doesn’t discount the influence from other sectors of society.


The publication selects Muslim individuals from a range of categories of influence, 14 in total: (Scholarly, Political, Administration of Religious Affairs, Preachers and Spiritual Teachers, Philanthropy/Charity and Development, Social Issues, Business, Science and Technology, Arts and Culture, Qur’an Recitors, Media, Celebrities and Sports Stars, Radicals, and Issues of the Day).


The publication notes that Emomali Rahmon has been President of Tajikistan since 1992, winning his fourth term in office in 2013. He has been a supporter of Tajik cultural roots, changing his name in 2007 from Rahmonov to Rahmon following a decree that banned Slavic names endings and other Soviet-era practices. Many of his family hold senior government roles, according to the publication.


As far as Saidmukarram Abdulqodirzoda is concerned, the publication says he is the state-selected Grand Mufti and thus head of Tajikistan’s Muslims, most of whom are Sunnis, and whose tradition includes following the Hanafi school in matters of ju-risprudence and the Naqshbandi spiritual path. They belong to the Persian-speaking Tajik ethnic group who share a language, culture, and history with Afghanistan and Iran.


President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdoğan tops the list of 500 most influential Muslims of the world. He is followed by King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud, King of Saudi Arabia, Grand Ayatollah Hajj Sayyid Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, King Abdullah II Ibn Al-HusseinKing of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and Sheikh Muhammad Taqi Usmani, Scholar and Deobandi Leader


His Highness the Aga Khan, the 49th hereditary Imam (spiritual leader) of the Shia Ismaili Muslims, is also listed among Top 50 most influential Muslims of the world.


Presidents of Azerbaijan (Ilham Aliyev) and Turkmenistan (Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow) were also listed among 500 most influential Muslims of the world.


Source: Asia Plus