In a time when we are witnessing a massive divide between different communities owing to race, caste, class, and religion, a group of young Muslim men from Mumbai have set a heartwarming example of communal harmony.
According to reports, Maharashtra’s textile town Ichalkaranji near Sangli has been suffering from dire floods. The group of Muslim volunteers took on themselves to clean the famous temples of the area that had been dirtied because of the floods.
Ichalkaranji is the same place where 10 years ago communal riots took place at an alarming rate.
Hence, it came as a surprise when 900 Muslim men gathered in front of Jama Masjid on Friday morning to participate in the cleanliness initiative. They divided themselves into groups and assigned each of the different temples to clean in the area.
“One of the teams that were assigned the Nadi Ves area of the city cleaned even the Margubai Temple in the area,” said Husen Kalawant, one of the volunteers.
The volunteers had 10 tractor-trollies, 2 earthmovers, and other cleaning materials like brooms, shovels, etc. that helped them get rid of the accumulated dirt.
They started with the Margubai Temple which is considered to be the main and the most revered in the village. They then went on to clean the Baudha Vihar, Makhtum Darga, Mahadeo Mandir and Sikandar Dargah.
“After cleaning the road and other areas around the temple, Maulanas who look after the Masjid in the city were entrusted with the task of cleaning the temple from inside. They bathed the goddess idol and even draped it with a new saree as per the Hindu tradition,” said Atul Ambi, who is a resident of Ichalkaranji town and too had participated in the cleanliness initiative.
Sources revealed that each of the volunteers considers cleanliness as godliness – cleaning their surroundings is as holy as worshipping God. What’s touching is that they didn’t discriminate between Hindu and Muslim gods.
We hope this stands as an inspiration to end communal disharmony!