Mumbai-Surat ‘train friends’ embody spirit of Hindu-Muslim harmony

Photo courtesy: Mahendra Parikh/The National

A group of “train friends,” daily commuters comprising Hindu and Muslim residents of Palghar district in Surat, 120 kilometres from Mumbai, have been embodying the spirit of interfaith harmony aboard the ‘Flying Rani’ train on the Western Railway Line.

During Ramzan last month, as the train left Andheri station in Mumbai, Hindu members would facilitate ‘iftar’ – breaking fast – for their Muslim friends, besides creating space near the footboard for their Muslim friends to pray. After the prayers, the iftar would turn into a communal get-together with dates and snacks shared among the passengers.

The Hindu-Muslim brotherhood of this group extends beyond Iftar and Eid celebrations. The Muslims offer fruits to their Hindu friends during the nine-day fast at Navratri. And during the Ganpati festival, they help their Hindu friends install a massive 5-metre idol in their neighbourhood, transporting the idol by road and participating in decorating it.

Read more at Iftar aboard Flying Rani: Mumbai train showcases spirit of Hindu-Muslim harmony by Shweta Desai 12 April 2023

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