By Najma Bibi Noor Mahomed
“I don’t need anything… there are people that don’t even have running water.”
These were the words of 48 year old Abdurahmaan Roopen, who despite his home gutted by a devastating blaze last week, is remarkably content. Roopen is the caretaker of the Shaykh Nurul Mubeen shrine on the hills of the mountain in Oudekraal, which was engulfed in flames after a fire broke out last week. His wendy house was completely gutted and him and his wife lost all their belongings in the fire. Despite the raging blaze, Roopen refused to leave the burial site.
The blaze swept across the vegetation around the kramat yet the shrine was miraculously not affected by the flames.
“I have been a caretaker here for about 4 years. Seeing all the plants and greenery going up in flames broke my heart. There was so much hard work put in for years to improve the condition of the kramat and seeing it in flames was very upsetting,” Roopen explained.
“I was actually coming back to the Kramat after Maghrib and I saw that authorities were letting people through. It was windy and there was a lot of smoke but I braved it because I saw people coming through. When I got up here I was sad to see the wendy burnt but the Kramat itself was untouched by the fire,” he recalled.
Roopen is very committed to his role as the caretaker and was steadfast in his decision to not move away from the mazaar. During this time he admitted to having some fear but his faith in the Almighty carried him through.
“The smoke was extremely intense. I did say at first let’s stay inside the kramat but we went down and by that time, the fireman were surprised to see that we were still up there. They said they didn’t know there were people up there and they didn’t even know there was a kramat there.”
The Cape Mazaar Society confirmed that miraculously none of the other kramats on the mountains slopes were burnt.
“The Mazaar society visited the site and they have discussed the cleaning up as well as the rebuilding of the wendy and so on. So there is something in pipeline,” Rupen said.
When someone loses everything they have, there is always a call for assistance. However in this case Roopen is not calling on assistance for himself but rather for people to assist in improving the kramat’s condition.
“People’s hearts have been so open thus far that Alhamdulilah I don’t need anything. If I think of the position I am in and its nothing compared to those who have nothing. There are people that don’t even have running water. There are people who don’t even have something to eat. Alhamdulilah I have something to eat everyday with the blessing of Allah,” he stated.
Roopen added that he does not require assistance for himself, but rather would like to see the community offer their assistance to the kramat.
“This kramat draws the poor, needy and even those with health and other issues. For me it would be nice to see the community come together because I have made this sacrifice as a Muslim brother to serve the kramat wherever I can. It would be nice if someone brings some paint or something to show they care. As Muslims we must remember that we always have something to give, it doesn’t have to be material it can even just be a dua or a smile.” VOC