Iftar Party for Members of the North East Community hosted at Nilasandra: A Report

In the last few days the Nilasandra area in Bangalore has gained infamy across India as  it came up as the name touted over and over again as the most sensitive area in Bangalore and the one which featured in most  rumours about potential attacks against members of the north east community.

In a remarkable show of camaraderie and generosity the Muslim community called for an iftar party in the Akbari Masjid in Nilasandra and dozens of members of the north east community were invited along with members of the state administration. Over a thousand Muslims from Nilasandra, Anepalaya and Austin Town collectively vowed to safeguard the north east community living in Nilasandra.

In a touching speech one of the officials of the Akbari masjid Sadr Saab said that it was unfortunate that Nilasandra had shot to fame in this manner, and that residents of Nilasandra wanted to prove the world wrong by ensuring that there would be no violence of any kind in the days to come. A seventy year old man belonging to the Gurkha community similarly stated that he had lived for a long part of his life in Nilasandra and had never encountered anything unpleasant so far and did not expect to  in the future either.

There have also been similar exercises in trust building that have taken place in other parts of the city and lets hope that these gestures of friendship will contribute towards lessening the atmosphere of distrust and fear that currently exists.

7 thoughts on “Iftar Party for Members of the North East Community hosted at Nilasandra: A Report”

  1. Some eight years back on my way to office on Church Street most days I would eat lunch at a small restaurant in Nilasandra. They served good meat, and in those days that was the only thing I could afford with my trainee salary. I stayed at Ejipura, about 500 steps from Nilasandra. There is also a church on the main street, a mosque nearby and a shop that sold good pork. Although very crowded and a place that most would call “LS”, it was never a hostile place for anybody. No person from the Muslim community has ever troubled anybody from the Northeast in Nilasandra because there is nothing, no basis and no stake over which people from both communities can get angry at each other, although if you wore a saffron robe and went there it may be a bit unsettling due to some reasons. Nevertheless, this place is not a haven for goons and drunkards as most upmarket Bangaloreans believe it to be. And that is a serious problem. There are richie rich snobs there as there are in Mumbai and Delhi, and they are the ones who judge people in more vicious ways than a corrupt prosecution lawyer. On a sidenote, the Mysore ‘intellectual’ lobby has been strangely silent on the entire issue. The popular blog Churumuri has only posted two photos on the issue along with super cynical headlines, when as a matter of routine it happily comments on the commodification of women and other male-ego-massage trivial things. It seems the supposedly good journalists of Churumuri are taking some sort of pleasure on how things have played out for them, because they don’t like both beef and port eaters, so to speak. Of course they have to serve their ‘market’ and the NE issues doesn’t exactly interest them, but at least an opinion should have come from their pool (or cesspool) of writers. I am upset over the people behind Churumuri, who can do so much but their sight is coloured with some weird sense of… superiority? In a small district near the Myanmar border where I studied till class 2 before coming to Mumbai and then Bangalore, my math teacher was from Karnataka. He gave me tuitions, too. He was a nice man, though I can’t remember his face. So people move in search of a better life (quote Life of Pi), and there is goodness in everybody.

    Well, I would have gone to this Iftar party if I were there. Eid mubarak.

  2. Thank you, Lawrence.
    It would be helpful if the state machinery could facilitate such shows of solidarity.
    Elected representatives and the officialdom in Karnataka could have acted early to reassure everyone.
    Police need not come down in force against harmless citizens appealing to the government to offer protection to people from Northeastern India (such as the small group that gathered at the eastern end of Bangalore’s Cubbon Park near the Gandhi statue, where you too were present.)
    State machinery could be better deployed elsewhere.

  3. It is a really welcome move to reassure the North-Eastern brethren that Muslims stand for peace. A common worker or a student in Banglore has nothing to do with the anti Muslim violence in Assam and the perpetrators of any violence in Assam or Banglore should be severely punished. Let not the criminals be let off this time as was done in 1983 in Assam.

  4. For more then 10 years i have stayed in annepalaya. We have celebrated each festivals wit peace n harmony. They invite us in their family weddings n treat us just like a family member. Misunderstanding will be resolved soon n we will be once again invited in their special occasions .

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