India is truly unique.No riots or raging fires can really extinguish the humanity in Indian hearts and this story is a proof to this spirit. The call to prayer from the mosque near Bakri Pol in the communally sensitive Kalupur area of Ahmedabad is no ordinary azaan. Heard for the first time in 30 years in March 2016, it signifies the voice of compassion and respect drowning out hatred. It has to be read by every Indian in this age of religious hatred and doctored social media posts.

Kalupur, a criss cross of Hindu and Muslim ghettos, was bloodied by communal riots in 1984. The 100 year old mosque is located in a Hindu majority area and that too near Ramji,Hanuman and Shesh Narayan Temples , Muslims began to avoid it lest there may be troubles.silent mosque in Ahmedabad

source : Times Of India

This polarization  increased and intensified during the riots after Babri Masjid demolition in 1993. By that time the Kalupur Mosque was in ruins due to negligence and had begun to crumble .

silent mosque in Ahmedabad

source : Times Of India

But paradoxically, after the communal riots of 2002, which really cut open Gujarat, residents around the mosque were moved by a voluntary desire to save it, that too a collective one. Hindus reached out to their Muslim brethren, cleared the wild foliage, and contributed resources for repairs. The mosque reopened in March 2016.  Now a year later, people in the neighbourhood affirm that the reconstruction effort has cemented bonds between communities. So much so, one set of keys to the mosque has been entrusted to Hindus . Now isn’t that a change?

silent mosque in Ahmedabad

source : Times Of India

“One set of keys is with Poonam Parekh and Kaushik Rami who sell flowers near the mosque,” said Aziz Gandhi, a social worker in Dariapur. Rami said he lights incense sticks twice a day near the mosque. “We are happy that the mosque that was closed for over three decades is now filled with devotees,” he said. The priest of the Nagdalla Hanuman Temple, Chandrakant Sharma, said: “With Haji Usmangani Mansuri and other trustees of the mosque, we renovated the structure.”

silent mosque in Ahmedabad

source : Times Of India

He said that previously Muslim youths had to go to other mosques to offer namaaz. “Now, they don’t have to venture out of their locality,” Sharma said. Hamidullah Shaikh, a Dariapur resident, said: “Our Hindu brothers helped us bring labourers to renovate the mosque.”

Let us celebrate and share such stories more than the ones which we normally do . Lets make a conscious effort such stories reach people and lets hope that that will help India to be reconstructed again without the religious lines.

We thank and salute Time of India for bringing out the story and take the liberty to publish this so that it reaches more and more people.