Hubli: The day after Milad-un-Nabi, the birthday of Prophet Muhammad, sees the Aasar Shariff Dargah in Aasar Mohalla here crowded with Muslim women, who arrive here from different parts of the country for its two day annual fair.
With men barred from entering the dargah during the two- day fair that has been organised for over a century here, thousands of burqa-clad women converged on it on Wednesday with their children.
After viewing the 2.5-inch hair from the beard of the prophet preserved in a box at the dargah and offering prayers for peace and prosperity, the women got down to enjoying the fair, believing that their wishes would be fulfilled following their visit to this holy place. Many offer sweets and pray for the marriage of their children on the occasion.
The hair from the prophet’s beard, which is said to have been brought here from Mecca more than a century ago, has turned the dargah into a major pilgrimage centre of North Karnataka.
While men regularly visit it all through the year, come the day after Milad-un-Nabi and they respectfully stay away from it, making way for their women to enter it for the fair in its grounds.
“Women and children enjoy the fair while the men stay away from the dargah. There has been a considerable increase in the number of pilgrims arriving here every year as Muslim women use this opportunity to the fullest,” said Hubli-Dharwad Municipal Corporation councillor , Altaf Kittur.
The dargah, with a mosque beside it , has also become a symbol of communal harmony as Hindu women too take part in the fair along with their Muslim friends.