“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one remembers to put on the light” — this famous quote from a Harry Potter movie is having real-life examples in the strife-torn Nuh district of Haryana.
Setting an example of harmony, people from the minority community in Marora village are guarding a temple and gaushala in Nuh district, which witnessed communal violence on July 31. Around 30-40 youths from the Muslim community can be seen guarding a temple and a gaushala from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. to maintain communal harmony in the area.
The decision was taken after the sarpanch of Marora village held a meeting on August 1 (a day after the communal violence broke out in Nuh) and asked the youths and elderly people of the area to keep the temple safe. The sarpanch has also barred entry of outsiders into the village.
Mushtaq Khan, the sarpanch, told IANS, “What happened in Nuh city did not affect the cordial relationship between people from different communities in our village, which has about 10,000 residents with over 3,500 voters.”
He also said that a day after the communal clashes in Nuh, people from the Hindu community in the village were scared. “I immediately called a meeting of ‘chattis biradari’ (36 communities) and directed people from the Muslim community to guard the temple and gaushala in the village until everything is sorted out. We also barred the entry of outsiders into our village so that no one could disturb law and order or create any kind of nuisance.
“At the meeting, it was unanimously decided that 20-40 youths from the minority community will guard the village from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. till further orders. We have also asked people to organize ‘thikri pehra’ so that no outsiders can disturb the harmony.
“People are creating a wrong perception of Nuh. We have been staying peacefully in this village for years,” Khan said, adding that the police had arrested two youths from the village who were sent to jail. Ved Prakash, caretaker and priest of Maharishi Dayanand Arsh temple and gaushala, confirmed that youths from the minority are guarding the temple since August 1.
“We were deeply concerned after clashes broke out in Nuh. We were about to seek help from the police. But the villagers decided to help us by asking the youths to guard the temple. The villagers did not allow any outsiders to come near the temple,” Ved Prakash said.
A police spokesperson also confirmed that youths from the minority community are guarding temples in the Nuh district. “We have also asked the residents of different villages to take care of their neighbors if they are from different communities. Sarpanches of the villages are playing an important role in bridging the gap between communities,” the spokesperson said.
Meanwhile, Nuh Superintendent of Police Narendra Bijarnia said that the search operation to arrest the accused persons in connection with the communal clashes that broke out in Nuh during a Braj Mandal Yatra is underway.
“We had already announced that those who are innocent need not fear the police. The police will only arrest the guilty. So far, eight teams have been formed under the leadership of senior police officers which are raiding places linked to the accused persons. An SIT has also been formed under the leadership of three DSPs.
“So far, 60 FIRs have been lodged and 264 people have been arrested in different cases. A total of 88 persons, including police personnel, were injured in the clashes. The local administration has relaxed the curfew timing from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. In order to maintain law and order in the district, 1,900 additional policemen have been deployed. Flag marches are being taken out regularly,” Bijarnia said.
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