Sikhs offer Gurdwara to Muslims for Eid namaaz

As the country was immersed was celebrating Eid Al -Adha on Saturday, Muslims in Joshimath, Uttarakhand were having trouble offering namaz due to heavy rains.

It was raining heavily in many parts of Dehradun since morning on Saturday. It was then that a Gurudwara (Sikh temple) in Joshimath offered their space to Muslims who had gathered to offer Eid’s namaz in Gandhi Maidan.

Muslims, who had started gathering in large numbers since morning on Saturday for the Bakr-Eid namaaz, were shocked to see that the open ground where they have been praying was completely under water.

They soon realised that there was no way they would be able to do their namaaz there.

Upset and anxious as time went by, they were wondering what to do when some Sikhs in the area came to know of the dilemma. After a few calls to each other, they knew what they had to do for their Muslim brethren. They offered their gurdwara some distance away to the Muslims.

The offer was immediately taken up and some 1,000 grateful Muslims from Joshimath, Govindghat and Pipalkoti did their Eid namaaz in the gurdwara’s premises, in peace and relative dryness.

Yogendra Singh (SDM, Joshimath), inspector Sanjay Kumar and members of the gurdwara management committee soon reached the venue and organised space for the prayers. To ensure everything went off smoothly, they remained there until the namaaz was done and the last Muslim man had filed out.

Buta Singh, the manager of the Joshimath Gurdwara Committee, said that “There is no mosque in the area and the Eid namaaz is offered in an open ground, at Gandhi Maidan, which is less than a kilometer from our Gurdwara. On getting to know that the ground was flooded and a huge gathering would not be able to pray at the spot, the gurdwara management quickly came forward to offer assistance. That was the least we could do.”

Mohammad Aslam, who sells vegetables in Joshimath, said, “We are deeply touched. This act by the gurdwara committee displays the true spirit of brotherhood. They saw to it that we were given proper space and time for the namaaz. We are extremely happy. This is something to be emulated by everyone.”

Inspector Kumar said, “While a substantial number of Muslims here keep shuttling between Bijnor, Saharanpur, Nazibabad and Moradabad, some of them are permanently based in Chamoli district. Muslims in the hill district are mostly small traders and vegetable sellers.” He pointed out that in the absence of a mosque, Muslims had nowhere to go for namaaz after Gandhi Maidan was inundated. “That’s when the Sikhs came in.”


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