Investigative team alarmed by claims that 15th-century Gujarat dargah was originally a Hindu temple
“The site reflects the rich composite culture of India where Hindus and Muslims come to both pray and perform rituals according to their beliefs,” the report notes, giving Rozi Roza details: “During the reign of Begada, Hazrat Mubarak Saiyyad was a minister and his son Hazrat Pir Minar Saiyyad built the Roza in memory of his father. The Roza is also the resting place of Pir Minar Saiyyad and other family members. It is decorated with domes, arches, columns and finely carved stone grilles.
He continues: “A little further on, on the opposite side, is Rozi, which houses the memorials of the wives and other women of the family. The Rozi is a simpler brick structure with some work inside the domes. The original structure had two minarets, one of which is still standing. You can see work on the minaret.
According to the report, on the occasion of Navratri, the Maha Ashtami (Atham of Navratri) on October 13, 2021, a group of people including women, teenage girls and boys entered through the door of the Roza Rozi dargah under the pretext to offer a puja in the small temple that appeared in 2014 inside the dargah compound.
The crowd, after entering the dargah compound, instead of going towards the temple, which is located at the back of the dargah in the same compound, entered the dargah. He danced throughout the procession, stopped in front of the dargah and played music on a DJ set.
Meanwhile, the report states: “Some people from the crowd entered the dargah and placed a picture of the Hindu Goddess Khodiyar and played aarti and sprinkled gulaal and lit a lamp (diya). Video of the whole incident was recorded and it went viral on social media.
Various Muslim groups, political parties and leaders raised the issue and submitted a memorandum to the tax collector and the police commissioner for action. Officials, including the collector, visited the site. The police uninstalled the photo of the Goddess the next day and ensured the cleaning of gulaal in the dargah. Protection has been granted to the site.
Pointing out that a temple-like structure, which appeared in 2014 inside the dargah compound, is dedicated to the goddess Khodiyaar, according to the report, since locals “claim that the idol of the goddess appeared mystically at the site of the temple.
Claiming that this marked the origin of the dispute and the narrative, which led to the statement that Roza Rozi was originally a temple, the report states, “Pooja began to be offered in the small temple on various occasions. Meanwhile, a separate entrance has been assigned to access the temple within the compound. Devotees wanting to access the temple offered puja have started using this entrance.
However, on the day of the incident, the crowd entered the compound through another gate of the monument and according to the guardian (mujavar) he allowed them to enter as he thought they were going to offer the puja in the temple. The crowd stopped in front of the dargah, DJ’d and danced. Among them, a person went inside the dargah and performed pooja after placing the goddess picture.