The initial tests of 79 contestants of the 16th session of the Dubai International Holy Quran Award will conclude today, with the last three from Burkina Faso, the USA, and Morocco taking to the stage. The best three of the best ten contestants with most melodious voices in reciting the Quran shall be then honoured in the presence of senior official and dignitaries.On Saturday, the competition saw its youngest participant this year; nine-year-old Malik Kharievich Khizhin, who represents Kazakhstan in the Award.
He is simply a genius. Not only was he able to recite tunefully with no mistakes, but also was ready to brief the judges about the first, middle and last verses of any chapter whose verses he was asked to recite.
Khizhin told Khaleej Times that he started memorising the holy Quran when he was six, and completed the sacred mission in just one year at the age of seven. “I used to memorise two pages per day, and then revise seven pages at a time, and read ten (200 pages) of the 30-part holy book every day.”
Encouraged by both his father, who is a religious scholar, and mother who fully memorised the Quran, Khizhin was sent to his cousin, a professional teacher of Quran, in a neighbouring country, to learn the Quran. “I stayed at my uncle’s house in Tajikistan for one full year to finish the job and proudly return home honoured with God’s final and infallible message to mankind.”
Though the Grade-4 student is the eldest, his three sisters and two brothers are also memorising the Quran. “My mother has always been a great help to all the family members.”
Wishing to satisfy Almighty Allah by memorising His holy book, Khizhin wants to be a scholar. “I want to be best of the best as our Prophet Mohammed (Peace be upon him) advised us when talking about the Muslims who learn the Quran and teach it to others.”
Showing good performance in memorisation and recitation of the Quran, Khizhin came first in two local Quran contest. “This is also my second international participation after the King Abdulaziz Quran Award in which I came third.”
Meanwhile, 20-year-old Abdulrahman Ahmed Mohammed from Yemen, looked very self-confident and affirmed that he is going to rank first in the Award. “Thanks to Allah, I have made not a single mistake in both morning and evening sessions.”
The three advanced certificates Mohammed got in reciting the Quran has sharpened and perfected his memorisation and recitation. “I feel touched by the tuneful and inspiring recitation of eminent Saudi reader of the Quran Sheikh Saad Alghamidi.”
Talking about his journey with the Quran, Mohammed started memorising the Quran when he was 10 and finished at 13 at the Muaz Centre for Quran service in Taiz city which houses his College of Islamic Sciences, Taiz University.