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Muslims join hands for Hindu neighbour’s funeral

Pic: Fikrokhabar

Bhabanipur, Bengal: An excellent example of spreading communal peace took place, when Muslim residents of Bhabanipur village near Malda’s English Bazaar came forward to help arrange the funeral rites of a Hindu woman.

Her two daughters could not arrange for the amenities for performing the rites, so the Muslims came forward to help them. Nirmala Rabidas, a 63-year-old woman lived with her two daughters, Archana and Tuni, as her husband died 13 years ago and elder daughter Rekha moved to Pukhuria village after marriage, reports Fikrokhabar.

She had been suffering from multiple ailments due to old age, including malnourishment, for a long time. She suffered a heart attack on Friday night and died before she could be taken to a hospital.

Their neighbours Enamul Momin, Sharif Momin, Kalu Sk, Ajmal Sk, Siraj Ali and others started collecting money from the locals for her funeral. They managed to collect around Rs 10,000 within a few hours, Times of India News reported.

Nirmala supported her family by working as a domestic help and sometimes binding bidi, neighbours said. Her daughters could not continue studies due to poverty.

“We were aware of the family’s condition. They had no source of steady income or a man to conduct the rituals. Nirmala’s daughters were helpless,” said neighbour Mirza Golam Mustafa.

District magistrate Koushik Bhattacharya visited the family on Saturday morning and handed over Rs 2,000 under the Samabyathi scheme and assured to provide education to the youngest daughter.

“It’s an excellent case of communal harmony, and we want to uphold such example for others in the state to follow,” Bhattacharya said.

However, the neighbours found nothing special in what they did. “We have been living together for years. What kind of humans are we if we can’t stand by our neighbours in times of need?” asked Mustafa.