TIRUPATI: In a display of religious amity, large numbers of Hindus and Muslims exchanged rotis at the Bara Shaheed Dargah on the banks of the Swarnala Cheruvu in Nellore during the annual ‘Rottela Panduga’ (roti festival) this week.
As a thanksgiving gesture following fulfillment of wishes, devotees exchange rotis between them, as more and more of them pray for the same in future. The unbroken chain continued year after year, drawing pilgrims from far and near to this festival.
“Irrespective of religion, caste and creed, people get together and offer prayers at the Dargah. There’s no discrimination between devotees. Rotis exchanged by Muslims are accepted by Hindus and vice-versa,” says an ardent devotee.
The five-day festival was revived this year after its suspension for two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Large numbers of devotees made beelines to the Dargah on the occasion of Gandha Mahotsavam, the main ritual, on Wednesday. Even after its completion, the Dargah was bustling with devotees.
This time, there was a huge demand for health rotis, followed by exchange of rotis for business success, education and wealth.
The civic staff from Nellore Municipal Corporation maintained hygienic conditions in the premises of the Dargah and also on the banks of Swarnala tank. The police department was continuously monitoring the premises to prevent any incident.
Sood Foundation Charity and other organizations have arranged free food and drinking water for the devotees.
Additional SP (crime) Chowdeswari and DSP Abdul Subhan regulated the traffic in the city.
On Friday, Nellore city MLA and former minister Anil Yadav offered free food to devotees and also received roti from city mayor Sravanthi on the banks of the Swarnala tank. Collector Chakradhar Babu and city commissioner Haritha also offered prayers at the Dargah....