Arrests Begin

Translated by M. B. Khoshnevisan


Following the martyrdom of Haj Mustafa Khomeini, we published and distributed open leaflets, which were suspected and persecuted by SAVAK for signing, printing and distributing them. In fact, not long after the martyrdom of Haj Mustafa and the holding of ceremonies for commemorating him, the SAVAK (Shah’s secret police) began the arrests. Those who had signed the anti-government leaflet were either imprisoned or sent to exile one after another. One of the signatures of the leaflet was in my name that is Seyed Taqi Dorche’ei. Thus, I was again persecuted by SAVAK, so I had to live in hiding for a while. The regime agents prosecuted the signatories to arrest them , seeking to arrest the perpetrators, as well as all of those involved in the process of printing and distributing the leaflets. One of the problems of the campaigners in those days was the arrest of the signatories. Everyone was afraid that the prisoners would name them. I was one of those scared and anxious people. One day, the SAVAK went there with the address they had from the house of my brother Mr. Seyed Hossein Dorchehe’ei, but it turned out that because they had not seen me and my brother, their only clue was that Mr. Dorche’ei was a prayer leader and resident in the neighborhood of Ibn-e Bab-eVey.

At any rate, they had gone to the house of my brother Mr. Seyed Hossein with two cars and arresting officers and inquired about Mr. Dorche’ei. Supposing that he was a signatory to the open leaflets of the Clergy Association and they wanted to talk to him, my brother had introduced himself as Dorche’ei while my brother had just a few signatures and I was the one who signed all the leaflets without exception. In addition, I was involved in publishing or signing leaflets. My brother was asked to put on his clothes and go with them. In response to his question, where and for what are they taking him? They said that the security organization wanted you and you should come. "What is the reason?" My brother asked again. "When we go there, we will tell you," they replied. He puts on his clothes and gets in the car with them and sets off.

In the car, one of the officers asked my brother, "What is your first name?" He replied: Seyed Mohammad Hussein. Then they looked at his face and asked: Is not your first name Seyed Taqi? My brother had replied: No, I am Seyyed Mohammad Hussein, Seyyed Taqi's brother. The officers, who had not believed, asked for his ID card. So he returned to his house to see his ID card. He got out of the car and went home to bring his ID card and give it to them. After seeing the ID card, they put my brother in the car again and drove about fifty meters farther than the house and asked: "May we call the security organization from your house? Then, they came to my brother’s house and called the organization. They said, “The man we have arrested is Seyed Mohammad Hussein Dorche’ei, namely the brother of Seyed Taqi Dorche’ei.” Apparently, the person behind the line wanted Seyed Taqi Dorche-ei not Seyed Mohammad Hussein. Therefore, they released my brother. The agents had asked my brother to give my address, to which he had said: It is alley after alley, and then they went directly to the Security Organization of Shahr-e Rey to get the exact address of my house from the Security Organization, and to come to me for arrest. After my release, my brother had not considered it advisable to give me this news over the phone. He sent his son to my house, I had just returned home from school and I was taking off my clothes, when the doorbell rang. I went to the yard door hurriedly. When I opened the door, I saw my brother’s son, he told me the story, and I no longer considered it advisable to stay at home.

I passed alley after alley and went straight to the house of Mr. Seyyed Mohammad Baqer Mousavi, who was one of the fellow citizens and the prayer leader of the Javad al-a’emmeh Mosque in Shahr-e Rey. When I entered his house, I was careful not to be seen by anyone. As soon as I entered, I told Mr. Mousavi, “The agents want to hunt me”. He warmly welcomed me; I stayed at his house for a few days, and he gave me a room where I could study day and night and exchange the news and information over the phone, sometimes with his children, and sometimes with him.

After a few days, I saw that it was not advisable for me to stay in one house, because all my works have been left unfinished, and after consulting with the friends, I decided to leave Tehran with a friend. One night I moved to Qom in plain clothes and a private car. In Qom, I came and went freely and comfortably in clerical clothes for a while. At first I was terrified and anxious lest they should follow me and find out about my hiding place, but after a while, when it became free of danger, I was relieved.

New leaflets were being published by the Combatant Clergy Association on the same day. Since its signatures had been collected by Mr. Mousavi Kho’einiha, he asked me, “Now that you are a fugitive, should I write your name under the leaflet or not?” I preferred to sign it in those circumstances. I was engaged in campaigning in Qom for many days, and since then I secretly returned to Tehran and lived in various houses.

Source: In the Realm of Love (Memoirs of Hojjat al-slam Valmoslemin Seyed Taqi Mousavi Dorche’ei), compiled by Abdolrahim Abazari, Tehran, The Institute for Compilation and Publication of Imam Khomeini’s Works, Orooj Publications, 1389 (2011), pp. 365-368. 


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