Hindus, Sikhs hold Iftar for Muslims in Punjab

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In a true display of secularism spirit, Hindus and Sikhs in Punjab’s Malerkotla district come together to hold Iftar for their Muslim neighbours during the holy month of Ramzan.

A report by The Wire speaks on the visible communal harmony prevalent between different religious communities with Iftar being served in temples and gurudwaras of Malerkotla district, a dominant Muslim population. Muslims too have been inviting Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, and members of other religious communities to join them in special Ramzan prayers, the report said.

History of Malerkotla

Malerkotla was founded by Sheikh Sadruddin-i-Jahan, a ruler from Afghanistan, in the 15th century. During the 18th century, when forced Muslim conversion was taking place on the orders of the last Mughal emperor Aurangazeb, the tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh waged a war cry against it.

Guru Gobind Singh’s two little sons – nine-year-old Zorawar Singh and seven-year-old Fateh Singh – were kidnapped and soon to be executed.

The order was opposed by Nawab of Malerkotla, Sher Muhammad Khan, who being on the Mughal side, debated the execution was against the teachings of the Quran. The boys were however killed.

Later a Gurdwara named Haa Da Naara in Malerkotla was built to honour Nawab Sher Muhammad Khan.

In the world of Gyanvapi, a Malerkotla exits

In present times, where significant mosques are entangled in legal disputes over land possession, Malerkotla’s religious neutrality is illustrated with a temple and a mosque sharing a common wall.

President of All India Brahmin Front, Mahant Swaroop Bihari Sharma, said that Malerkotla remains far away from the politics of hate.

“Neither have we ever cared for the communal ideology of politicians nor would we let them preach to us. We, the Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, and Christians have been together for ages in Malerkotla. There are politicians who try to incite violence but no religion teaches hatred. Nobody wants to fight. I keep telling people that before they talk about religion, let us become humans first. We should celebrate all festivals together,” he was quoted by The Wire.

Shri Naina Devi Temple, which shares the wall with a mosque, also organises Iftar for their fasting Muslim brothers and sisters.

“Why should we stay away? Hindu-Muslim politics might work in Uttar Pradesh. Punjab is different from UP,” said the chairman of the Shree Ram Mandir Committee at Ahmedgarh, Deepak Sharma.

Locals strongly believe that Malerkotla is blessed by both Guru Gobind Singh and Sher Mohammad Khan and that is why it has been untouched by communal violence.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Kashmir Monitor staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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