Fire erupts during Muharram procession; Hindu family helps avert disastertext_fields
Udaipur: After a fire broke out on a "tajiya," a structure carried during the Muharram procession, just a few metres from the shop of killed Udaipur tailor Kanhaiya Lal, a family of Hindus assisted in preventing a serious accident.
The entire region was on edge when Lal, a tailor, was brutally murdered more than a month ago in a hate crime by two men who said they were retaliating for an insult to Islam.
Tuesday night, when the procession moved through the congested streets of Mochiwada street, the top of a 25-foot-tall tajiya caught fire.
Muslims following the tajiya did not immediately detect the fire, which was discovered by bystanders seeing the procession from their balconies on the second or third floor, according to PTI.
Locals, when they spotted the fire, did not waste time and took it upon themselves to put it out and started throwing water at it.
Ashish Chowadia, Rajkumar Solanki and their family members kept pouring water on the structure from their balconies till the flames were doused, the police said.
"Not only was the incident averted, but it also became an example of communal harmony. This incident has won everyone's heart," district collector Tara Chand Meena said.
Senior police officer Shipra Rajawat, who was also present there, said the fire was probably caused by a short circuit or sparks from the incense sticks. After the Hindus extinguished the fire, Muslims thanked them by clapping, she said.
She said that Mochiwada street is close to Mal Das street where Kanhaiya Lal was murdered on June 28.
Kanhaiya Lal was murdered by two men - Riaz Akhtari, who is also referred to as Riyaz Attari, and Ghouse Mohammad.
After the murder, the two released a video wielding the cleaver with which they hacked Lal, and said that he was beheaded for insulting Islam.