Devotees throng Ajmer shrine to mark 801st Death anniversary of Khawaja Moinuddin Chishti

Ajmer, May 11 (ANI): Devotees in large numbers thronged the shrine in Ajmer during the 801st Death anniversary of the Sufi saint Khawaja Moinuddin Chishti, and took part in religious rituals to mark the commemoration 'Urs' of Khwaja Gharib Nawaz.

"This is the 801st death anniversary of the Sufi saint and there is a ritual of sandal. On this auspicious day we clear the sandal offered by the devotees in the past one year and later distribute it among the devotees coming from far and nearby places. We also keep the sandal for those devotees who could not attend the ceremony and later we give them when they visit the shrine. It is believed that sandal cures various diseases and that is the reason devotees take the sandal, keep it in bottles of water and drink that water throughout the year," said Qutubuddin Sikkhi, serviceman at the shrine.

Six days of Urs of Khwaja Gharib Nawaz is observed every year in the first week of Rajab, the seventh month of the Islamic calendar.

"I get peace here and the peace I get by coming here, I don't get in anywhere. I have come here with a hope and with god's grace my prayers would be heard. I have come on a very auspicious day which comes once in a year, today the ritual of sandal is performed and I feel lucky to be here. If Khwaja Garib Nawaz blessed me, my dreams would fulfill," said Gulfisha Mirza, television actress.

People belonging to various faiths from across the country thronged the shrine in the heart of Ajmer to pay obeisance and seek blessing of the Sufi saint.

Devotees were lucky to witness and be part of the sandal ritual which was performed.

The sacred sandal which is pasted throughout the year at the shrine is cleared on this day and distributed among the devotees.

Devotees take the sandal to their homes and keep in the water filled bottles and drink that water throughout the year, as it is believed that the sandal cured various diseases.

The 'Dargah' of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti is one of the most revered shrines of the country and it presents a perfect example of religious harmony.

During Urs devotees from various parts of the country and abroad visit the shrine to seek blessings .

Urs is observed to mark the death anniversary of any departed saintly figure. Although it is an Islamic tradition, people of all faiths participate with equal reverence.

Hindus and Sikhs also visit the shrine, which lies some 350 km southwest of New Delhi, and is seen as a symbol of communal harmony.

Qawwalis (chorus singing) are performed in the praise of the almighty and the shrine is decorated with lights and fresh flowers during the Urs.

The Muslim shrine opened its main gates called the 'Jannati Darwaza' (Gateway to Heaven) early this morning .

It is said that whosoever performs the act of crossing the gate towards the holy tomb is sure to secure a place for him in heaven.

Devotees believe that the saint fulfils their wishes during this time. (ANI)

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