As Muslims around the world observe the holy month of Ramzan, a man in Assam broke his fast to donate blood to a Hindu man. Twenty-six-year-old Panaulla Ahmad from Mangaldoi district decided to break his fast to help a patient in dire need of blood.
Resting after his ‘sehri’ (pre-dawn meal) recently, Ahmad noticed his roommate Tapash Bhagawati was worried about something. Bhagawati, who is part of the Team Humanity — an all-India organisation that links blood donors to patients, had received a call the previous night about a patient who needed two units of O-positive blood. The Assam chapter is headquartered in Jorhat and has a network of 200 active workers, 90000 members and 25,000 regular donors. However, despite a rigorous search and online appeals, Dhemaji district’s resident Rajan Gogoi’s family failed to procure donors.
“On 5th, I got a call requesting blood. Next morning, I couldn’t find any donors — as I was making numerous calls, my roommate Panaullah walked in. Since he was observing Roza, I naturally did not ask him,” Bhagawati told indianexpress.com.
A few minutes later, Panaullah offered to donate the blood himself seeing there were no donors available. Both Ahmad and Bhagwati work at Guwahati’s Swagat Super Speciality Surgical Hospital and immediately rushed to another hospital where Gogoi was admitted.
“He made a few calls to his hometown in Sipajhar to ask village elders if it was okay break the fast. He got varied responses but finally, he decided to go ahead and donate,” Bhagawati added.
“Roza is a religious belief we choose to follow. My decision came with the realisation that I could always do Roza the next day, but today was the only chance I had to save a person. So I chose to save him,” Panaullah told indianexpress.com
Proud of his friend’s selfless act, 22-year-old Bhagwati said, “I am very proud to have a friend like Panaullah. He chose humanity over religion.”
The photo of the two friends was shared on Facebook by a page and it quickly went viral. The page urged others to donate blood regularly just like the duo.