On June 10, 2018, at Gurgaon Nagrik Ekta Manch, an interfaith community-based organisation, organised an Iftar in the sector 27 community centre, Gurgaon.
The GNEM was formed a few months back in Gurgaon (by the efforts of the couple Rahul and Saba) to take on the growing hate in the city and stop the nefarious designs of trouble mongers to stir up communal strife in Gurgaon by trying to stop the reading of namaz on Fridays and threatening violence.
Addressing the people who gathered for the Iftar, Altaf Ahmed explained the significance of Roza.
What is Roza? After sighting the Ramadan moon, Muslims observe complete fasting (no food or water) from dawn to dusk. This practice continues till the sighting of the new moon when Eid al-Fitris is celebrated.
Altaf added, “The Prophet says roza or fasting becomes worthless if the person observing it continues to engage in negative activity like back-biting and harbours feelings of hatred, jealousy, deceit and corruption. Elaborating on the significance of the Ramadan fast, the Prophet once said, ‘Roza is a shield’ that protects us from misfortune, malaise and untoward happenings. After describing roza as a shield, the Prophet explained the use of this shield by saying that whenever anyone proceeds towards you with nefarious intentions, you should tell him, ‘I am observing roza.'”
As Shabnam Hashmi said “None of the religions is in jeopardy in India. What is in jeopardy is the Constitution of India which grants an equal right to all citizens to practice their religion.”
Maybe this a test of the resolve of peace-loving Indians to either live a life of loving and caring for each other or permanently descend into a state of strife and hate. This example provided by our younger brothers is an eye-opener.
May love triumph over hate was the message of the Iftar.