KHARTOUM (Sudanow) - Sudanese were bereaved Friday by the untimely death of the nation’s most popular Holy Koran recitation talent, Sheikh Norain Mohammad Siddiq, who was killed in a car crash together with three of his associates on the outskirts of the city of Omdurman here.
The four men, all of whom are known to have learned the Holy Book by heart, were on their way back from a religious trip to the Wadi Halfa City in the extreme North of the country, towards the common border with Egypt.
The late Norain (38) was so publicly popular for his touching recitation of the Koran along the Aldouri recitation method that many favored to liken his voice to the biblical ‘David’s Whistles’.
“It is because of Sheikh Norain’s captivating voice, that we have seen thousands of converts to Islam,” said radio broadcaster A’arif Hamdan.
The social media was awash of grief over the departure of Sheikh Norain and his colleagues, with many sharing or replaying video footages of Sheikh Norain reciting the Koran in his solemn, tender voice.
Sheikh Norain was born in the Alfarjab village, near the town of Bara, in Northern Kordofan State in the country’s mid-west. He learned the Koran by heart in its different recitation methods as a young boy, though the Aldouri reading method was always his favorite style.
In addition, he researched heavily in the Koran, its sciences and its interpretation.
Then he moved to Khartoum where he taught the Koran in the City’s Grand Mosque for a long time. In recent times he led the prayers and taught the Koran at the Alnoor Mosque in the Kefori neighborhood here.
Broadcaster Hamdan, who first presented Sheikh Hamdan to the public through the Koran Radio in 2003, considered Sheikh Norain “the most beautiful voice ever to have recited the Koran in our age. That is my humble view of him.”
Adds Mr. Hamdan: In the fasting month of Ramadan of the year 2003, I was passing at night near the Abujinzeer roundabout in Khartoum, east of the Grand Mosque. I noticed that the policeman in charge of the area was confused about something. This situation prompted me to ask the man what was up. He said to me: “They have brought to us a young boy to lead the prayers in the Grand Mosque. This is creating huge crowds here because everybody started to pour in from different areas to pray with him. Because of that, the night prayer in this Mosque needs a special effort to control the traffic around the place.”
When I reached the Mosque, I was taken by great surprise: Sheikh Norain was reading the last verses of the Surat Alzumar. I could not hear him very well because worshippers outside the Mosque were weeping loudly as they followed his reading of the Koran.
Later on I hosted him at the Radio station. He entered the studio .. the program was live for two hours …a quarter an hour after he started reciting, tens of the Radio workers broke into the studio, which then looked like a place of mourning with everybody weeping to the effect of Sheikh Norain’s captivating voice.
God gracious.. Sheikh Norain looks very much like the great Egyptian Koran reader Mohammad Siddiq Alminshawi in terms of age, his journey with the Koran and in the way people loved him. If people would opt to journey to where Sheikh Norain leads the prayers, the same had used to happen to Sheikh Alminshawi, adds Hamdan.
In an obituary, Chairman of the Sovereign Council, General Abdelfattah Alburhan, has conveyed his condolences to the family of the late Norain and the people of Sudan at large.
In a tweet Burhan prayed for Allah’s mercy for Norain and his three colleagues,
For its part, the Council of Ministers has expressed sadness for the death of sheikh Norain and his fellow Koran learners Ali Yagoub, Abdallah Awadalkareem and Mohannad Alkinani.
“Sheikh Norain and his fellow Koran readers had perfumed our days and nights with the verses of the Great Koran and have risen to heavens while back from a Koran recitation event in the North of the country.”
“We pray to Allah the Almighty to reward them in paradise for what they have been doing,” the Cabinet’s obituary further read on Saturday.
In similar sentiments, Minister of Religious Affairs and Endowments Nasr Eddin Mufarrih said he was deeply shocked by the death of these scholars “who enlivened our souls with the Holy Koran.”
Throngs of Sheikh Norain’s lovers had gathered at the Omdurman Teaching Hospital’s Morgue to bid him and his fellow readers their last respects.
Many persons from around the World who converted to Islam because of Sheikh Norain’s attractive reading have also tweeted expressing deep grief for his departure.
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