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Posted at: Jun 15, 2018, 12:21 AM; last updated: Jun 15, 2018, 12:21 AM (IST)

It calls for a feast

Setting up an example of harmony, these tricity people are bridging the religious gulf by throwing Eid party for their Muslim friends

Jasmine Singh

The ancient temple on the banks of River Gomti in Lucknow set a perfect example of harmony when its mahant Divyagiri hosted an Iftar party on the temple ghats. On this occasion, temple priests welcomed Muslim guests and offered them pure vegetarian delicacies. 

In times when it has become a norm to hurt religious sentiments, some people in Tricity and around do their bit for their Muslim friends on Eid whereby spreading the message of communal harmony. 

Chanchal Manohar Singh, chairman, Society For Promotion Of Peace, held an Iftar party for his Muslim friends in city. “There is so much tension and hatred around, this Iftar party was a message to the minority community that they are loved and cared for, and that they are as much a part of this country as we are. So, for the first time, an Iftar party was held at a Sikh’s house where both Sikhs and Hindus served their Muslim friends dates, fruit chat, dahi balla, Rohafzah, followed by dinner.” 

Even though, for a long time now, Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims and Christians have been celebrating each other’s festivals, with ‘religion’ being discussed and approached with sensitivity and care, small steps to mend communal harmony will help solving many problems. 

Amarpreet Singh, Khalsa Aid’s Asia-pacific director from Patiala, has received a lot of invitations from Muslim communities from region to celebrate Eid with them. “Khalsa Aid has funded Ramadan fresh food for 5,000 Syrian refugees daily in Lebanon.  The project was run by partner group SAWA for Aid and Development. They had been running the operation for a month. Also, our volunteers purchased new shoes for over 500 children refugees in Mosul.” Amanpreet and his volunteers believe that religion and caste create divide, “in order to serve humanity, which is the aim of our organisation.”

The heart warming examples of inter-community companionship are the answer to many problems. February this year, two neighbours, Rajender Kumar and Shabbir Khan, residents of Jind, booked the same banquet hall for the marriage of their daughters Shaalu and Shabnam, an event that was widely covered. 

“This is called love and respect for each other’s religion, no political game can alter this as long as we respect the religious sentiments of other communities as well,” shares Zaheer Ahmed Butt, a fitness trainer from Zirakpur, who has been invited by his friends Manish, Navjot and Upansu for an Eid party. “Ideally, I should be the one treating them, but they are the ones organising a party for me. My friends make this day so much special. Even though they don’t know much about how to organise an Eid party, they’d definitely manage to do their best.” 

jasmine@tribunemail.com

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