At a time when controversy over performing yoga is on, a group of Hindus in Uttar Pradesh’s Mahoba district has decided to observe Roza with their Muslim neighbours during the holy month of Ramzan starting on Friday.
“We have decided to observe fast with our Muslim brothers from Friday at Udal Chowk crossing in Mahoba. We will be sitting in a group of about 60 persons including at least 25 Hindus and will attend ‘Sehri’ and ‘Iftar’...,” Tara Patkar, coordinator of Bundeli Samaj, said.
Patkar said that the move would serve dual purpose: On one hand it will spread the message of religious harmony and on the other it will boost their campaign for setting up of All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Mahoba.
“We want policy makers to acknowledge our unity and take a positive decision for setting up of AIIMS in the district as poor health services in this area affect all, irrespective of caste and creed,” he said.
“Though politics is going on over the issue of performing yoga on International Yoga Day (on June 21), we have invited politicians of all parties to show our unity for a cause,” he added.
He said that this would be part of their AIIMS-Mahoba campaign under which they wrote over one lakh letters to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 18 languages.
“Under this campaign, Muslim youths and children wrote to the PM in Sanskrit while Hindus wrote in Urdu, besides in other languages like Sindhi, Punjabi and Malayalam.
“Camps were set up at many prominent places like railway stations, bus stops and hospitals to make the campaign a success. Even schools were involved in the campaign,” he said.
Explaining the logic behind the demand, Patkar said the district is situated at the heart of Bundelkhand and does not have proper health care facilities.
“Patients admitted to primary health centres are referred to Kanpur, Lucknow, Agra and to districts of neighbouring Madhya Pradesh. Setting up AIIMS will help the entire region spread over seven districts in UP and five of MP,” he said.
Patkar claimed that their voice had reached the Prime Minister’s Office, which sought details of their campaign.
Image: A group of Muslim girls do yoga in school. Photograph used for representational purposes only.