Bhopal: Eid means joy; it is time for get-together where one gets an opportunity to know the cultural richness of other’s religion. Besides, the occasion helps one realise that the maze of religions is but the roads which diverged as human beings journey to comprehend and reach out the God; it gives the message of love, humanity and peace. These are some of the salient reflections which the people from various communities shared with the Free Press on the meaning of Eid.
Swastika Chakraborty, 48, theatre artist
Mere liye jitna important diwali aur pavitra durga puja hai utna hi eid bhi hai …. . In my childhood , Eid for me was just a holiday. But when I got into college its meaning changed to eating and enjoyment with friends. I never cared which caste or religion my friends belong to. I hail from Allahabad but when I came Bhopal after marriage and join theatre, the festival has become an important part of my life. I have lot of Muslim friends here and I visit their home on Eid every year. I buy chocolates and flowers for children as Eidi and gifts for elders and I too get Eidi in return. I never return empty handed rather I come with loads of joy and warmth.
Maninder Singh,34, sports teacher
I celebrate Eid with the same feelings and zeal as I celebrate Baisakhi. I have some Muslim friends in the city and I visit their homes on Eid with family and enjoy a lot. I feel very happy to be part of it. Although, nowadays communal tension and frictions are being created by political parties in our country but I think we should not only respect all religions equally participate in their festivals. It will really help in bridging the division in the hearts of people on the lines of castes and religions. It will send out a message that we all are human beings first and our duty is to not just to maintain but also spread love, brotherhood, peace and humanity in the society.
Moris Lajras, musician
Eid gives me the same festive feelings as Christmas. The only difference in both festivals is that while I am host in Christmas but and in Eid, I am guest. When I was child, I would visit my friend’s home wearing new clothes to eat meethi sewai and would also get Eidi. In my college days my friends and I rejoiced in roaming in the old city market on chaand raat. Many things have changed now but still I visit my Muslim friends. Sewai is also cooked at my home on Eid. In fact, all Hindustani cuisine is made on every national festival.
Rahul Tiwari,28, Asst. professor in People’s College
Eid is also an Indian festival like Diwali and Holi. The only difference with the festival is that it is celebrated the whole month. And the big thing is that how one gets to avail Iftar with different set of people every day. For me, Eid is a healthy get-together. Bhopal is known for its rich heritage of Hindu-Muslim unity. I have lot of Muslim friends in Bhopal and I go for shopping on chand raat with them. I wait for Eid eagerly because on the day, I get chance to eat many types of sewai.
Prakurti Jain, 24, Marketing Manager, Courtyard by Marriott, Bhopal
I celebrate Eid with the same feelings with which we celebrate our own festival. I essentially visit my Muslim friends on Eid. I am a vegetarian so for my sake they cook special veg biryani and kheer. I also do special shopping and purchase new clothes for Eid. For me eid is -mere doston ke khushiyon mein shamil hona…
Keshav Raut, 31, painter
It is celebration for me. We wait for Eid just the way we long for Diwali. I am from Maharashtra but there I had no Muslim friends. But in Bhopal I have so many Muslim friends. They take me for shopping with them. On the day, we visit their homes to greet them. It feels very good and I really love Sewai especially on Eid. We also cook sewai in normal days but eid ki sewai baat hi kutchh aur hai…
Shalini Malviya, 21, student
I wait for Eid as just like Holi and Diwali. For me, Eid is like a get-together, and get an opportunity know other culture closely. It is also special for me because my Guru is a Muslim. So I never miss the chance to go his home and greet him. The atmosphere of the day is quite different. I try to spend the whole day with our Muslim friends and enjoy a lot.