Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India Pakistan and The World

Vada Dasturji Meherjirana on the Udvada Land Issue

Below is a message from Vada Dasturji K N Dastur Meherji Rana on the Udvada Land Issue received via email from Kaizad F Keravala.

The matter of the Udvada land near Paak Iranshah Atash-Beheram has reached the judiciary and is pending before the Gujarat Revenue Tribunal, Ahmedabad.

We, the six Vada (Chief) Dasturs are trying our best, with one voice and unanimity, to prevent the impending onslaught on our Holiest of the Holy Atash (Agni), which is burning without extinction for over a thousand years, and the village presently housing the Padshah Saheb for about three centuries.

The Parsi Community stands united in its request to the Gujarat Government to confer heritage status on the Holy Shrine and its surroundings in Udvada. The imminent question is the smooth observance of age-long religious tenets, traditions and practices related to the Holy Fire, which include certain restrictions and checks on the areas surrounding the Holy Building. The whole community is very much conscious of these religious requirements. The concept of a world tourist centre or world heritage site is far away from the present imminence and can be dealt with if (at all), as and when it arises.

We beseech and implore all the well-wishing and well-intentioned Parsis not to rush to the Press or media or internet with random talks or rumours or gossip. This creates impediments in our difficult task apart from the fact that it may attract the law relating to contempt of court in view of the pending litigation.

We are extremely thankful to Parsis all over the world who have awakened to the gravity of the situation. Please pray and continue to pray to Ahura Mazda and all the Divine Forces in nature including our Asho Pegamber and the Holiest Iranshah Atash (Agni) Padshah Saheb to disperse the gathering storm.

We, all the six Vada Dasturs and the Mobeds – Priests (Purohits) as also the entire Parsi community are thankful to the Government of Gujarat for their help and cooperation in the matter. We assure the Government that, for the Parsi Community, this is a religious situation touching the very existence of the spiritual life of the Parsis and therefore there are no two opinions on the point.

We wish the Gujarat Government and all its Officials a happy Divali and New Year and we pray to Ahura Mazda for their happiness, peace and success in the years to come.

Yours in His Service,


K. N. Dastoor Mehrjirana

For and On behalf of all Chief Dasturjis