In an area called Kalupur in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, is a nondescript mosque that you might miss if you weren’t looking for it. While it may not be very different than most mosques across the country, it’s history is rather extraordinary.
And it’s very existence today is a lesson in the importance of preaching kindness and humanity.
Photo source: Twitter
The 100-year-old mosque, which is situated in an area with a largely Hindu population, was abandoned after communal riots in 1984 and especially after the Babri Masjid demolition in 1993. It stood there a silent spectator to the region’s bloodied history until the communal riots that took place in 2002.
What should have created a further wedge between the Hindu and Muslim communities in the area, instead lit a desire for communal peace and harmony. In a bid to thaw the icy relations, a number of Hindus in the community reached out to the Muslims in the locality to help restore the mosque to its original stature.
This meant clearing the foliage that had grown around the mosque and repairing the considerable damage. As of 2016, the mosque was once again back to its former glory. Two Hindu locals who sell flowers near the mosque even have a set of keys to the place! One of them, Kaushik Rami, spoke to Times of India, noting, “We are happy that the mosque that was closed for over three decades is now filled with devotees.”
If Hindus helped restore the Kalupur mosque, then it was the Muslims in Kashmir who banded up to celebrate Shivratri in a show of solidarity with the Kashmiri Pandits who fled the region decades ago. Recently in Sumbal town, which is 25 km from Srinagar, hundreds of Muslims held placards outside a Shiv temple asking the Pandits to return to the region.
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A group also entered the temple to clean it as their way of paying respects to the place of worship.
Image source: Facebook
These places of worship along with the people stand as beacons of the very essence of humanity. And that’s a message worth spreading to the world.