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PICS: Zardari offers prayers at Ajmer; donates $1 million

Last updated on: April 8, 2012 18:52 IST

PICS: Zardari offers prayers at Ajmer; donates $1 million

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Sandip Dahiya in Ajmer

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on Sunday offered prayers at the historic 13th century dargah of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti in this pilgrim town after which a $1 million donation for the shrine was announced.

At the end of his visit to the shrine marked by tight security, Zardari said he felt "a great spiritual happiness" after coming to this holy place which was "beyond description."

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Image: Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari (C) waves after offering prayers at the shrine of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti at Ajmer
Photographs: B Mathur/Reuters

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PICS: Zardari offers prayers at Ajmer; donates $1 million

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A million-dollar donation (Rs five crore) for the welfare of the shrine was announced on behalf of Zardari by a member of his delegation, according to the Anjuman Committee's  vice president Syed Khalimuddin Chishti.

Clad in a blue shalwar kameez, 56-year-old Zardari, accompanied by his son Bilawal, Interior Minister Rehman Malik and members of his 44-member delegation, stayed inside the Sufi saint's mausoleum for 20 minutes where he offered a 42-square metre long red 'chadar' and floral tributes.

Bilawal  offered a green chadar. Chadar is a ceremonial cloth inscribed with religious verses. A chadar was also offered by Union Minister Pawan Bansal on behalf of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Bansal, the minister-in-waiting for Zardari's visit, prayed for peace and harmony.

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Image: Bilawal Bhutto Zardari (3rd R), son of Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari, walks after offering prayers at the shrine of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti at Ajmer
Photographs: B Mathur/Reuters

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PICS: Zardari offers prayers at Ajmer; donates $1 million

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"Is mukaddas mukam par akar mujhe jo ruhani khushi mehsus hui hai wo na kabi e bayan hai. Alla tala se dua hai ki wo tamam insaniyat ke liye asaniya paida kare. Amin" (I feel a great spritual happiness after coming to this holy place. It is beyond description. I pray to god to create favourable condition for the humanity. Amen," Zardari wrote in the visitors book.

Zardari performed 'fateha' (supplication) and went around the premises comprising mosques, graves of the Khwaja's disciples, a pool and two big cauldrons used for cooking  food during the annual Urs. Pervez Musharraf and Zia-ul-Haq were the previous Pakistani Presidents to offer obeisance at the revered shrine.

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Image: Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari (C) waves after offering prayers at the shrine of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti at Ajmer
Photographs: B Mathur/Reuters

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PICS: Zardari offers prayers at Ajmer; donates $1 million

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The President landed at Ghugra helipad in Ajmer in a helicopter from Jaipur where a special aircraft carrying him and his delegation brought him from Delhi after a meeting   with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who also hosted a lunch for him.

The convoy then moved to the Dargah Sharif, 12.3 kms by road from the helipad.


Image: Bilawal Bhutto Zardari (3rd R), son of Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari, walks after offering prayers at the shrine of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti at Ajmer
Photographs: B Mathur/Reuters

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