Alot (Madhya Pradesh): In times when communal intolerance and debates over it are ripping through the country, there are still places in the state where harmony stands tall.
For instance, there is a village in Ratlam district where Hindus and Muslims worship within the same compound wall that houses both a temple and a mosque side by side.
Makanpura village near Taal village in Alot tehsil of Ratlam district has had the Jai Shri Khedapati Veer Hanuman temple and the Noorani mosque in one place since time immemorial.
People following both religions come to worship at the temple and offer respect to the mosque as well, and vice-versa. Even during the festivals of either community, both the mosque and temple are equally decorated as people come together to celebrate, disregarding the faith to which they belong.
All the religious activities and temple management are taken care of by its priest Madan Guru, while the Sadar of the mosque is Abid Khan Mew.
Elders from the village say though the administration and local police consider the village sensitive and have deployed some police personnel after a recent violent incident, people from different communities here worship together.
"The Creator is the same, only the names are different," says temple priest Madan Guru, "If we worship one, how can we disregard the other?"
The priest of the mosque Mew, holds similar views, "We respect each other's faith. There has never been any clash between the two communities here."
Time and again, when communal violence has reared its ugly head in India, the temple and the mosque have continued to be tended with peace and care, with no collision among their followers whatsoever.
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