Ahead of Eid, meet Old Delhi’s bangi, who keeps an ancient Islamic tradition alive (video)

Mohd Rais has been waking the people of Old Delhi up in time for sehri for the past 14 years.

Written by Kashish Badar | New Delhi | Published:July 5, 2016 7:04 pm
bangi main_759_YT It takes Mohd Rais around one-and-a-half hours to call out names of almost 300 people.

Ramzan is an auspicious month for Muslims across the world. From giving charity to praying for extended hours at night, Muslims try to absolve themselves of their sins and please Allah during this holy month.

Mohd Rais, too, has been doing something special in order to please his lord. He takes to a being a ‘bangi’ during the month-long festivities and devotes the entire day to praying and working for the people. A ‘bangi’, as he is known in Old Delhi, is most often a man who is assigned by the local mosque to become a public waker for sehri – the pre-dawn meal Muslims have before they begin the fast everyday – during Ramzan.

Bangis are known as messaharatis in the Middle East. The bangi roams around in streets and calls out the names of the residents often carrying a stick to bang on the doors or plays a small drum. Rais has been a bangi for the past 14 years. He took over his father’s legacy. “During Ramzan, my day begins by waking up the residents of Jama Masjid area in Old Delhi. It takes me around one-and-a-half hours to call out names of almost 300 people.” His love for Allah and for his fellow Muslims is the driving force for the man.

Watch video: On Eid, meet the man with an unusual job, keeping an age-old tradition alive

 

He has also been given the responsibility of managing iftaar at the local mosque (Hauz wali masjid). Iftaar is the evening meal that Muslims have while breaking their fasts. Rais manages with the iftaar that the nearby houses send and distributes them to travellers and the underprivileged fasting people who stop by the mosque.

Technology has taken away the role of the bangi, but Rais claims that it would not die any time soon. There are people who love the call of the bangi and would like the centuries old tradition to be carried forward by each generation.

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  1. I
    IslamForFooools
    Jul 5, 2016 at 9:15 pm
    Fck Islam Fck editors of indianexpress, they are Islamic terrorists
    Reply
    1. I
      IslamForFooools
      Jul 6, 2016 at 3:54 am
      Mohemmed the Aisha repist was insane and u r insane to follow such child repsit
      Reply
      1. I
        IslamForFooools
        Jul 6, 2016 at 3:53 am
        U r Muslim, u r not even human, so u have no fit to speak about other religions of human beings. Islam kills everything, feel ashamed on your life, your parents gave birth to a piece of filth.
        Reply
        1. j
          jaihind101
          Jul 6, 2016 at 12:35 am
          ISLAM IS RELIGION OF TERRORISTS , QURAN IS MANUAL OF TERRORISTS, CRIMINALS AND BARBARIANS , AS YOU ARE ONE OF THEM YOU MAY NOT UNDERSTAND THE DIFFICULTIES FACED BY NORMAL, LAW ABIDING CITIZENS OF THIS WORLD, YES NOTHING BETTER IS EXPECTED FROM A MUSLIM LIKE YOU
          Reply
          1. j
            jaihind101
            Jul 6, 2016 at 12:37 am
            YOU MAY USE ABUSIVE LANGUAGE ,THE FACT REMAINS , ISLAM IS FOR OF AND BY TERRORISTS, CRIMINALS AND BARBARIANS AS YOU ARE ONE OF THEM WE EXPECT THAT FROM YOU AND YOUR ISLAM
            Reply
            1. j
              jaihind101
              Jul 6, 2016 at 12:32 am
              is it a holly month?? well they kill they terrorize in that month , they encourages criminal activities in that month , I BELIVE BEYOND ANY DOUBT THAT ISLAM IS RELIGION OF TERRORISTS, BARBARIANS AND CRIMINALS
              Reply
              1. M
                Munzir Baig
                Jul 5, 2016 at 9:55 pm
                Again an ic insane fool write and shows how illiterate you are.
                Reply
                1. M
                  Munzir Baig
                  Jul 5, 2016 at 9:53 pm
                  It seems you are an insane . Your language is so vulgar and show what type of human being you are.
                  Reply
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