DAKANĪ, REŻĀ-ʿALĪŠĀH, also known as Shah ʿAlī-Reżā (1094-1204/1683-1799), leader (qoṭb, lit., “pole”) in the years 1154-1214/1741-99 of the Neʿmat-Allāhī Sufi order in Hyderabad (Deccan), India. Nothing is known of his background, except that he was a disciple of Šams-al-Dīn Dakanī, who initiated him into the order. He is best known as the man responsible for reviving the Neʿmat-Allāhī order in Persia through the dispatch of Sayyed ʿAbd-al-Ḥamīd Maʿṣūm-ʿAlīšāh Dakanī to Fārs in around 1190/1776. Reżā-ʿAlīšāh preached in a city mosque every Friday and initiated many distinguished persons into the order. According to Maʿṣūm-ʿAlīšāh, he enjoyed special favor with the Asafjahid ruler of the Deccan Neẓām-ʿAlī Khan (1175-1218/1762-1803) and his vizier, Arasṭū Khan. After the death of Neẓām-ʿAlī Khan a certain Bahrām Jang, who nursed a grudge against Reżā-ʿAlīšāh, threatened the ḵānaqāh but retreated when Reżā-ʿAlīšāh went out to meet him. Reżā-ʿAlīšāh’s tomb is next to that of Mīr Moḥammad Dakanī, located beside a mountain 4 km outside Hyderabad. He apparently did not leave any literary work, but a robāʿī composed by him was quoted by Reżāqolī Khan Hedāyat (p. 451). His successor as qoṭb of the order in India was Ḥosayn-ʿAlīšāh.
R. Hedāyat, Rīāż al-ʿārefīn, Tehran, 1315 Š./1936.
J. Nūrbaḵš, Pīrān-e ṭarīqat, Tehran, 1358 Š./1979; tr. as Masters of the Path. A History of the Masters of the Nimatullahi Sufi Order, New York, 1980, pp. 74-75.
Maʿṣūm-ʿAlīšāh Šīrāzī, Ṭarāʾeq al-ḥaqāʾeq, ed., M.-J. Maḥjūb, III, Tehran, 1345 Š./1966, pp. 332-34.
Originally Published: December 15, 1993
Last Updated: December 15, 1993