Hadji Murad of Khunzakh. Portrait by G.Gagarin, 1848. Wikimedia.org

31 May 2019, 23:49

Dagestani authorities refute information on reburial of Imam Hadji Murad's remains

The information about the reburial of the remains of Imam Shamil's naib Hadji Murad in the Khunzakh District, scheduled for June 2, is incorrect, the Khunzakh district administration reports.

On May 30, Magomed Amirkhanov, the chairman of the organizing committee for the reburial of the Hadji Murad's remains, announced that the ceremony of the reburial of the Hadji Murad's remains would be held in the Dagestani village of Khunzakh.

Hadji Murad, a participant of the liberation struggle of people living in the Caucasian mountains, was the Imam Shamil's naib during the Caucasian War, but in 1851, there was a break between Imam Shamil and his naib, and then Hadji Murad fled to Chechnya and was killed on May 5, 1852. The head of Hadji Murad was cut off after his death and was sent to Petersburg. The body of Hadji Murad was buried in the village of Tangyt in the Gakh District of Azerbaijan.

On November 2, 2017, the leader of Chechnya called on to rebury the skull of Imam Shamil's naib Hadji Murad, whose head was stored in the Kunstkamera in Saint Petersburg. Members of the public committee "Heritage of Leo Tolstoy and Dagestan" announced that descendants of the Imam Shamil's naib wanted to bury the skull in Azerbaijan, but the solution of the problem was postponed.

Scientists have pointed to the political and psychological background of the "fight for the Hadji Murad's skull."

Political analyst Ruslan Kurbanov believes that "some representatives of the Dagestani elite resist" to the solution of the problem with the burial of the Hadji Murad's remains. According to the political analyst, in the late 1990s, the solution of the problem was prevented by the people who did not want "not their man" to become a hero in the eyes of the society due to the transfer of the Hadji Murad's skull to the republic.

Besides, according to Ruslan Kurbanov, many experts believe that the Hadji Murad's skull is to be buried in Dagestan, since its burial in Azerbaijan may provoke resistance.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on May 31, 2019 at 12:24 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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