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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

7 reasons why Kumbh Mela cannot be compared with the Tableeghi Markaz meeting

The anti Hindu cabal does not leave any occasion to defame Hindus and Hindu dharma. This was in evidence on yesterday as one of the chief snans of Haridwar Kumbh 2021 was taking place. Social media was filled with posts comparing the Tabhleeghi Jamaat gathering of last year with Kumbh gathering. The Kumbh was declared a super spreader and sensing the mood, propaganda portals like The Print and The Wire published opinion pieces validating the anti-Hindu jamaat. However, here are the 7 reasons the comparison is totally out of place :-

  • The Kumbh in Haridwar comes once in 12 years according to the Hindu calendar. Even if we include the other 3 Kumbh, it is only once in 3 years that a Kumbh Mela is organised somewhere in the country. This is the world’s biggest religious gathering and is an inalienable part of Hindu dharma. In fact, one can calculate the dates of Kumbh to happen around 1000 or 2000 or any number of years from today, because it follows the well established rules of astronomy. Compared to this, Tableeghi Jamaat is only an organisation of Muslims for promotion and spread of Islam. There was no religious obligation to gather at a place for Jamaatis as this is not written anywhere in their religion.
  • The Jamaatis not only gathered, they broke the official rules and flouted the orders with impunity. It must be remembered that many foreign Jamaatis were found hiding in various parts of country. They were helped in this by local Muslims and mosques despite widespread knowledge that they were required to be quarantined. This was when there was a nationwide lockdown in progress. This is not the case in Kumbh as the lockdown is not in existence anymore.
  • The behaviour of the leader of Tabhleegi Jamaat is another issue which has not received adequate media attention. Maulana Saad the leader of Tabhleegi Jamaat made the following statements:-
    •  “If you think you will die if you assemble in a masjid, let me tell you, there is no better place to die.”
    • “This is not the time when you leave your prayers, meeting people just because doctors are saying. When Allah has given this disease, then no doctor or medicine can save us.”
    • “This is the time when mosques should be populated. I feel pity for those who are saying that this is a time when people who should not go or stay inside mosques. This is the time when we should be not be scattered and leave mosques. If we gather inside mosques then Allah will create peace and comfort in the world.”

For a community many of whose member believed that “5 times namaz” was the cure of Coronavirus and “sumaiya tara” would end the epidemic, this coming from the mouth of a revered religious figure is encouragement enough to gather together even when the government has forbidden it. One cannot show a similar statement by any Hindu religious figure during the current Kumbh gathering or before that. It must also be remembered that Maulana Saad remains at large even today.

  • The Kumbh is being organised with a standard operating procedure and protocols are being followed to restrict the spread of CoVID. People have to bring negative RTPCR reports or vaccination certificates to get in Haridwar city. Thousands of vehicles and people were returned from the borders of Haridwar for not completing these formalities. A network of cameras is keeping an eye on the rules being followed. Hindu religious bodies and government are together working to ensure that the CoVID spread due to Kumbh remains minimal. The data of cases by the Uttarakhand government shows that despite almost five times the samples being tested from Haridwar in comparison to Dehradun, the daily positive cases from Haridwar are less than that in Dehradun. This shows that the restrictions by the government are working in containing the spread.
  • The capacity of the health system has also seen significant increase since the early days of the epidemic. While the Jamaati gathering was in the initial days of pandemic, when quarantine facilities, doctors and beds were not available at such a scale. Now, more than 300 doctors are deployed in the mela premises and adequate facilities for quarantine and hospitalisation have also been provided for those who are infected.
  • One must also remember that when the Jamaatis were gathered in Markaj, all other kinds of gatherings were banned all over the country. There were no political rallies; offices and factories were closed and not even a single person could go to temple alone on foot. Compare with the situation today where all political parties are addressing rallies in Tamil Nadu, Assam, Bengal etc.; offices and factories are operating at full capacity and all means of travel are open. Thus clearly, the situation is not comparable.

The status of pandemic has changed from the days when Jamaatis took the infection to all parts of country. Now we are in a stage when all parts of country already has the virus as well as established systems to treat the same. Thus, the comparison of Tableeghis with Kumbh is not only frivolous, but positively mischievous. The comparison clearly has one goal and that is to paper over the irresponsible behaviour of Maulana Saad and the despicable acts of Jamaatis in  quarantine.

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Pawan Pandey
Pawan Pandey
Pawan Pandey is an Educator based in Dehradun, currently working as Senior Staff Writer with HinduPost. He is an Engineer by training and a teacher by passion. He teaches for Civil Service Exams as well as for Common Law Admission Test. He has deep interest in politics, economy, culture and all things Bharatiya. He fancies himself to be a loving husband and doting father. His weakness is Bharatiya food, particularly sweets. His hobbies include reading, writing and listening to Bharatiya music.


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