14, Oct 2015
By Saurabh Vaktania |Posted 14-Oct-2015
Forgoing Rs 1 lakh in rent for a 2,500-sq-ft space in Dharavi, Hindu trader offers it to Muslim namaazis after mosque in his neighbourhood is demolished for redevelopment
While the lynching incident in Dadri brought simmering communal tension into national focus, closer home in Dharavi, a 53-year-old businessman has set an example of Hindu-Muslim brotherhood. With the local mosque closed for redevelopment, it is thanks to this Hindu leather merchant that the local Muslim community has a place to offer namaaz.
“Our masjid was very small and old, which is why we began its redevelopment in March. But after that, we had nowhere to offer our prayers,” said Haji Shaukatali, trustee of Noor Masjid in Mukund Nagar. When the community approached Dilip Kale, he did not hesitate to help them.
Kale, who runs a store called Jazz Leathers in Sion, owns a second shop right opposite the mosque in Mukund Nagar. This 2,500 sq ft shop was just right for the purpose, and Kale readily offered it to them. “They came to me for help and I readily gave them my shop to use. After all, these are my people. We have all been living together in this area for over 40 years,” said Kale.