New Delhi: “Sarva Dharma Sambhava”- a multi-faith prayer ceremony was observed at Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh on Sunday. People of different faiths came together to observe this prayer in Shaheen Bagh, where anti-citizenship law protesters have been demonstrating for almost a month now.
During the inter-faith ceremony there were a traditional Hindu-style “hawan” and chants of Sikh “kirtan“, and participants also read out the Preamble of the Constitution and took an oath to preserve its “socialist, secular” values.
“Scriptures from the Gita, the Bible, the Quran were read and Gurbani held. Then the Preamble of the Constitution was also read out by people from varying faiths who are supporting this movement,” Syed Taseer Ahmed, one of the organisers of the protest, told news agency PTI.
The crowd gathered from hundreds to over a thousand by the afternoon. Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor was among those who addressed the protest in the evening. Being a Sunday and the weather relatively warmer, more people could join the protest, he added.
The concept of ”sarv dharm sambhav” (equal respect for all religions or peaceful co-existance of all religions) was popularised by Mahatma Gandhi during India’s freedom struggle against the British rule to promote inter-faith harmony.
Hundreds of protesters, including women and children, stayed put at the Sarita Vihar-Kalindi Kunj road at Shaheen Bagh on Sunday, as their movement for the withdrawal of the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and a proposed pan-India National Register of Citizens (NRC) was set to complete a month on Monday.
People have been protesting at Shaheen Bagh and nearby Jamia Millia Islamia to oppose the CAA and the NRC. Besides Delhi, protests have unfolded in several parts of the country over the contentious law since it was passed on December 11 and have led to clashes at several places including Uttar Pradesh, where over 20 people have died.