For different faiths to co-exist harmoniously in a society, the contribution of every single individual is imperative.
This is particularly necessary in present times, given the gradual manner with which communal discord is potently infiltrating its way into the minds of people living across different cities and towns in India, where religion has always been a sensitive subject.
While there have been several unfortunate incidents which have resulted in brutal communal riots, there have also been times when different religious communities have come together and worked towards a common goal through absolute solidarity.
One shining example of such camaraderie was witnessed when Nambiarthodi Ali, from Wandoor in the Malappuram district of Kerala was approached by the temple committee of the Kundada Shiva temple in Chathangottupuram with a request to purchase a 4.7 cent plot of land with a pond in his compound.
Now one would assume that Ali might have refused the proposal point-blank or probably traded it for a higher value. Instead, he gave away the requested piece of land to his Hindu brethren for no cost!
“The pond is a must for the temple as per their custom. There is no pond in the temple land. Though they offered me a price, I decided to donate the pond, which is meant for public use. There is nothing big in it,” a modest Ali told Deccan Chronicle.
In fact, he even permitted the temple authorities not just to take any amount of land to serve the purpose of the pond but also the right to use a pathway in his compound that leads to the water source. Even the identified plot will be registered in the name of the temple committee.
In recognition of his generosity and selflessness, the committee honoured Ali during the Shivratri celebrations organised at the temple on Tuesday. “The temple was in dire need of a pond to keep up the religious traditions. We are happy that besides giving a pond, a strong message has also been conveyed to society through Ali’s gesture,” said V Shiva Shankaran, one of the committee members.
Inspiring individuals like Nambiarthodi Ali make us want to believe that even in times when threats of communal violence are prevalent in the air, consideration towards each other’s religious beliefs can hold a society together.