Source: Official Website of Grand Ayatollah Montazeri
Date: Sunday, March 28, 2010
In the name of God,
A lady passed a way today; a lady who was known to the world through her husband, and through her son. The respectable Ms. Rabbani, spouse of Grand Ayatollah Montazeri, was someone who had fought [in the resistance against the Shah] anonymously and without any expectations [of fame]. She had waited [for long periods] at the doors of the Shah’s prisons for a few minutes’ conversation with her son or her husband. She was a loyal companion and friend to her husband during his exile. Most importantly of all, she was a source of support and spirit to those families involved in the resistance; [families who had loved ones detained or martyred]. However, the victory for the Islamic Revolution did not put an end to her pains and misfortunes.
Now, less than 100 days after her honorable husband passed away, she has passed away as well. Normally, [various] institutions and organizations would have sent messages of condolence, and the Martyrs Foundation would have organized a memorial ceremony. Normally, husband’s students, who are now among the leaders of this establishment, would have visited the descendants to show their sympathy. But, [rest assured], her descendants have never expected anything. Her descendants have experienced a life of ungratefulness, and they have seen how certain groups have a way of making problems worse rather than solving them. The descendants only wanted to organize a normal funeral ceremony just like any other normal citizen would. However, [we were surprised to find that] officials are even afraid of that. They sent a representative from the Intelligence Office in Qom to convey a message to the family – that we are forbidden from organizing the usual funeral ceremony for our respectable lady.
In response to the representative, I voiced my strong disagreement and told him that it would be better if he did not create a problem for himself, for us or for the establishment. Some of our friends continued negotiating and the representative visited our office at dawn. Seeming to withdraw a bit from his original position, he said that we can organize our gathering in the St. Masoumeh memorial mosque, and continue our rituals 150 meters away from the mosque, close to the burial site.
On Sunday and in the midst of tight security control, we took our departed to the mosque. After the prayers, lead by Grand Ayatollah Shobeiri Zanjani, security officials transported the body of our departed to the burial site. Later, we ourselves transported an empty casket while chanting “God is great, and there is no deity to be worshipped other than God.” People also used slogans that criticized this grave wrong. And, talking about new forms of oppression and injustice – we performed funeral rites without the body of our departed.
Despite the fact that people heeded my calls to organize a calm and peaceful ceremony, security officials [still] apprehended about 30 of the attendees, both ladies and gentlemen, on our way back from the burial site. I condemn these detainments, and believe they are not part of a democratic establishment. I hope that these people will be freed as soon as possible and that adequate thought be put into future actions and decisions.
— Ahmad Montazeri