Mohsen Qara’ati in the picture frame

The word mullah is derived from the Arabic word mawlā , meaning “vicar”, “master” and “guardian”.The term has also been used among Persian Jews, Bukharan Jews, Afghan Jews, and other Central Asian Jews to refer to the community’s religious and/or secular leadership. In Kaifeng, China, the historic Chinese Jews who managed the synagogue were called “mullahs”.