Hindu-Muslim garba gets nod in Surat

Recently in Bharuch, organisers of a garba event named Raas-e-Bharuch called it off, citing protests by saffron groups and non-clearance from local police.

By: Express News Service | Surat | Published:October 1, 2016 4:08 am
garba-759 Dancers during the rehearsals at the GMDC ground on the eve of the 9-day Navratri festival that begins Saturday, in Ahmedabad on Friday. Javed Raja

Days after a garba event, being organised by a group of realtors, including a Muslim, was called off in Bharuch following protests by saffron outfits, police in neighbouring Surat have allowed a similar programme by a business group in which one of the four proprietors is a Muslim.

The garba event, being held at L P Sawani School Cricket Ground in Adajan area of Surat, will begin on Saturday with the start of the nine-day Navratri festivities. It is being organised by a real estate group run by Manu Chaudhary, Dhaval Chaudhary, Bharat Chaudhary, and Altaf Patel.

“I have come to know that Raas-e-Bharuch event had been cancelled, but in Surat, nobody opposed or protested our garba event. We have not put names of the organisers on publicity material. Our motive is clear that funds raised from this garba event will be used for a CBSE school in Surat… We have not barred any community from the event,” said Altaf Patel.

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When contacted, ACP (G Division) P R Desai said, “We have given permission for the Navratri event… They have fulfilled all the security standards and there is no issue.”

Recently in Bharuch, organisers of a garba event named Raas-e-Bharuch called it off, citing protests by saffron groups and non-clearance from local police. It was being organised by a group of realtors — Asif Patel, Jasu Patel and Jaydeepsinh Raj.

The VHP had first objected to the garba event, forcing the organisers to ban entry of Muslims and also take off Asif Patel’s name from publicity material. Other saffron outfits, including Shiv Sena and Bajrang Dal, however, continued to protest. When the event was cancelled, permission from Bharuch police was still awaited.

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