Source: Sify News
If the recent riots made Bareilly cry for peace, the trouble-torn district in western Uttar Pradesh is now witnessing a rare show of communal harmony now -- Muslims taking up the construction of a damaged temple and Hindus joining hands to restore a mazar (mausoleum).
The Hanuman temple, popularly known as the Bajrangi Mandir, and the Peer Bhai Meer Zafar Ali's mausoleum -- both situated a few metres away in Kohadapeer area in Bareilly, some 250 km from Lucknow -- were damaged on March 2 during communal violence.
"Hindus are restoring the mazar and Muslims the temple just to give a befitting reply to those who want to widen the Hindu-Muslim rift for vested interests," Vikas Sharma, a Kohadapeer resident, said.
"In our opinion, those who damaged the two religious places cannot be of any religion. They were just anti-social elements, who have nothing to do with Hinduism or Islam. Our ongoing cooperation for restoring the religious places would definitely counter communal forces to a considerable extent," added Sharma (40), who is an English lecturer at a college here.