Mysuru: In troubled times, religious difference are bound to disappear and it’s happening in Kodagu district where a popular madrasa and a Hindu matha have opened their doors to offer refuge to people of all faiths, displaced by the floods and devastating landslides.
This is happening ahead of Eid on Monday which makes the gesture all the more significant. The madrasa and Shadi Mahal (marriage hall) at Nellihudikeri in Somwarpet taluk and Kashi Matha in Bagamandala besides Basaveswar Bhavan in Virajpet have opened their doors to the victims setting an unique example.
“Hindus offered prayers at the nearby temple on the occasion of Varamahalakshmi pooja on Friday and we all are all set to offer Bakrid prayers at the mosque and madarasa here on Monday. Kodagu is often portrayed as communally sensitive and the natural calamity has come as a blessing in disguise for us to prove our communal harmony. I sleep amid Hindus under the same roof, eat the same food cooked for all of us by our gram panchayat member Annamma, who is a Christian and her son Jibin. Some of us are fasting for Eid and so we are provided biscuits, bananas and coffee before sunrise,” said 49-year-old Safiya Mohammed, a three-time member of Nelligudukeri gram panchayat who herself is a flood victim and is housed at the Nellihudikeri madrasa. “While helping others out, I could not carry with me vital documents from my house which was flooded. With the help of ZP member Latif, my husband, Muhammed, son Nauphal, daughter-in-law Arifa and grandchildren Nihaali and Nishma were shifted to the madarasa," she said.
At the relief centre at Shadi Mahal in Nellihudikeri, there are 170 people of whom only 10 are Muslims with 15 out of 20 volunteers serving there belonging to the minority community. The madrasa has 580 people of whom 300 are Muslims while the volunteers are from the Hindu, Muslim and Christian communities.
Among the 108 victims at Kashi Matha in Bagamandala, seven are Muslims while Basaveswar Bhavan in Virajpet has 267 people. "The government is managing the relief centres but the authorities at Shadi Mahal, the madrasa and Kashi Matha too are extending support to us" said Kumar H.T., nodal officer.
Bharath, from Baradi Colony in Nellihudikeri, a social worker, has ended up as a victim at the relief centre in Shadi Mahal along with his daughter Chaithanya, a LLB student, and wife, Vaarija a social worker. “It was at midnight on Friday that water gushed into our house forcing us to flee for our lives," Bharath said....