Alwar: In a world where coexistence seems close to impossible, Rajasthan’s Alwar district sees Hindus and Muslims offering prayers underneath the same roof.
The integral shine of Sayyed Darbar and Sankat Mochan Vir Hanuman Mandir are two structures that aren’t even isolated by a wall. Sitting atop Moti Doongri Hill, the ambience is essential as communal tension is on the rise following the murder of Pehlu Khan by cow vigilantes.
On Thursdays, the moment the bhajan ends, the exact same microphone and loudspeakers play qawwalis praising Allah. Saffron and green flags flutter together in the compound.
Devotees enter the compound from the gate regarding the temple where they pray and gives their forehead for a tika. The devotees then proceed to the dargah, where they cover their heads and bend down to touch the grave. Those that go to the site say the smoke from maha aarti (of camphor and wicks soaked in ghee) when blended with roshni-kirasm (burning of loban during the dargah) creates a fragrance that simply cannot be compared.
Offerings at both the mandir and dargah come from a typical thali.
Sushma Agrawal is a normal devotee and originally visited the place almost a decade ago. “Initially, I thought my in-laws would be taking me to two different places but I was shocked to see that the two places exist in complete harmony,” said Agrawal talking to Times of India.
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Mahant Nawal Baba could be the chief caretaker of both places and objects to those who find themselves surprised at the peaceful coexistence. For a long time, he has performed early morning aarti on the site.
“Both the places show the same path and are equally revered. What’s the problem,” asks Das.