As the nation is witnessing a time when religious intolerance is escalating, a ray of hope for communal harmony still remains in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada district.
In Maa Danteshwari temple of Dantewada, ghee lamps are lit in the names of at least seven Muslims. According to a tradition, members of these Muslim families got their diseases cured after they had promised to light ghee lamps in the temple.
According to News18, once a Muslim man had gotten ill and even the doctors treating him had given up hope for his recovery. It was then that his father promised to light a ghee lamp in the temple if he gets cured and miraculously the patient got cured.
Other Muslims on whose names lamps are lit include Sweety Alam, Manan Miraz Hussain, Zahida Khatun, Soham Kabir, Seikh Sahid, Shakeel Ahmad and Salim Raza Usmani.
Harendra Nath, who is an assistant priest at the temple stated that this is a tradition which is in practice from a very long time and no one even raises any objection over this.
During Navratra, people from both Hindu and Muslim community gather and participate in the puja without any differences.
Apart from lighting the ghee lamps, members of the Muslim community also arrange fruits for the devotees and other pilgrims who fast during the Navratra. They also participate in special Rath Yatra of Maa Danteshwari (Durga).
Mohammad Hamid of Anjuman Islamiya Committee said, "We celebrate the festival along with our Hindu friends without any problem and we hope peace and harmony prevails in the country."
(with inputs from PTI)