Amal Chatterjee
8 min readFeb 11, 2024

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A worthy resolve

Source :Google photo of Shabnam Shaikh

Synopsis : A time comes in every generation when some youngsters and adults come forward to challenge the rigid society where they live under harsh laws imposed on them by the outdated religious leaders who prevent their aspirations of freedom to choose their faith and a new way of life . Moslems no matter where they live in the world also want to improve their life by getting the education and skills that can help them out of poverty and into a bright future but they also want to return to their ancestral faith they were forced to leave to become Moslem. The blog tells you the story of a brave young Moslem girl who made a worthy resolve to walk 1450 kms from Mumbai to Ayodhya where she will pray in the new temple of Lord Ram , her God ,to show her devotion and fealty to Ram.

I avidly followed the progress made everyday by a 21 year old Moslem girl who walked from Mumbai to reach Ayodhya to see the Lord Ram statue who was recently placed in the majestic new temple being built there.

She wore a black hijab to cover her head according to her Islamic faith but carried a saffron flag of Hindu devotees of Shri Ram to show her piety for Ram so one day she decided to walk to Ayodhya that is some 1450 kms from Mumbai . She told the world that Ram was for the humanity and not just the Hindus who revered him as their God . She declared that she was the descendant of Ram as all the humanity was.

It did not sit well with fundamentalist mullahs of Islam who did not like this young college student to declare that she being a Moslem revered Ram as her deity and was absolutely determined to walk the great distance alone carrying a 20 kg. backpack .

She was afraid of the hoodlums who were sent by the mollahs to threaten her so she asked the government to provide her with security that was provided.

She was ridiculed by some Moslems in Mumbai who gathered somewhere to show her their black flags and even threatened her with stone pelting but she was brave and continued her journey that presented her many challenges.

The cold of the winter season, thick fog , rain and lonely road passing through forested areas with no humans to be seen anywhere did not dampen her will to continue so she walked alone shivering but carrying her backpack and her firm resolve that no matter what challenges she faced, she will one day reach Ayodhya.

Her journey was flashed by her in You tube daily so her story went viral that brought her to the attention of millions in India and abroad who like me also followed her progress. She walked some 30 kms everyday not knowing where she will find some food and where she will spend the night but her story spread all over the route she had taken so at every stop people waited for her with food and flower garlands that they put on her neck and hugged her .

Some people touched her feet to show their respect and love for her and others greeted her with drums and flutes while some reporters walked with her for a while and posted their videos on their TV channels.

Soon two boys joined her and walked with her so they too could reach Ayodhya. She was given police protection while on the road so they too walked with her and asked other policemen to pick up the relay. Her feet swelled up and had blisters so she limped on as best as she could with a smile on her lovely face and never complained.

She told everyone that Lord Ram had called her and was always with her to give her strength and blessings so people marveled at her resolve because she had undertaken a great decision to walk the entire 1450 kms no matter how long she took to reach Ayodhya.

Her two Hindu companions who were impressed by her courage and devotion to Ram joined her to walk with her all the way to Ayodhya gave her foot massage and shoulder rub in the evening to ease her pain although they too were young and had blisters of their own. People greeted them everywhere with food and flowers but she asked to meet with the Chief minister of Madhya Pradesh who received her and the boys very warmly and ordered that she must have police protection all the way so that she does not come to any harm from the anti Hindu people.

Some people with medical training gave her ointment to sooth her blisters that they lovingly bandaged while others brought her bottled water, sweets and fruits but somewhere on the road some bad policemen treated her badly and called her names that made her cry so she appealed to the Chief Minister Yogi of Uttar Pradesh to give her protection that he ordered immediately and sacked the offending policemen.

Her name is Shabnam Shaikh who has become the media darling because she is a young Muslim girl who is walking all the way from Mumbai to Ayodhya to visit the Ram temple there and pray at the feet of Ram there which is quite unusual in India where Muslims discourage or threaten any Muslim person who shows piety to Hindu God and pray in Ram temple. The mullahs who pretend to be their spiritual leaders start issuing edicts to punish such a person . Shabnam ignored their threats and continued her journey making her You tube followers admire her more.She declared that she is not afraid of any mullahs and said that the country is governed by the constitution and not by some mullahs issuing ban on her. She was free to go anywhere and pray at any temple.

At every stop she chanted victory to Lord Ram and long live mother India that the crowd around her joyfully repeated while dancing and beating their drums.

Her shoes were ripped and clothes were in tatters so she finally stopped in a town to buy her new shoes and fresh clothes. Sometimes she and her two companions who had become her fast friends slept in police stations or in hotel rooms that the owner provided for free and gave them all the food they could eat.

The whole country was watching this brave girl and her determination of walking even in the rain but she smiled and kept on walking while keeping her parents in Mumbai posted by her cell phone on her progress in reaching Ayodhya.

She shivered because of winter temperature but somehow tried to keep herself warm .Her companions also suffered the cold air but kept her company and tolerated the pain in their legs as well but they never complained.

Then one day Shabnam arrived in Ayodhya after walking for 41 days where she and the two boys were given a rousing welcome by the people and the religious priests who put flower garlands on them and put vermilion paint on their forehead that all Hindus wear to show their devotion To Ram.

What Shabnam achieved was something that made her parents proud but it also encouraged thousands of Moslems who walked great distances to reach Ayodhya to show their devotion to Ram. It was unprecedented in India to see Moslems walking with Hindus in great harmony to go to Ayodhya and show their respect to Lord Ram.

Shabnam entered the temple where she prayed and received the blessings of the priests and took selfies with them in front of the statue of Ram. Another Moslem girl also called Shabnam walked from Delhi to Ayodhya and covered some 750 kms to show her veneration for Ram.

The Indian moslems were converted to Islam by the Moghul kings who came to India to establish their empire using brutal force and intimidation . The Hindus were given the choice of accepting to become Moslem or die so they became converted out of fear. The Moghal kings looted the wealth of the country, destroyed thousands of Hindu temples all over the country and spread Islam using threat. They built mosques at the looted site of temples like in Ayodhya where the Hindus after waiting for justice for over 550 years took the matter into their own hands and demolished the illegal mosque there . They have also vowed to take back all the destroyed Hindu temples from the Moslems and rebuild them to restore them to their former glory.

Please read the blog called The day the river ran red in this context at the link given below.

https://aumolc.wordpress.com/2023/12/30/the-day-the-river-ran-red/https://aumolc.wordpress.com/2023/12/30/the-day-the-river-ran-red/

This process has already started in Benares and now in Ayodhya. Now many Moslems like Shabnam say that Hindus should be given back all their places of worship and the country should be declared a Hindu nation. Hundreds of thousands of Moslems have rejoined their ancestral faith and have vowed the fealty to Ram . All over the world, very large number of Moslems are reconverting back to Hinduism because they say that only Hindu religion can bring peace among people. These ex moslems are blazing the trail of returning home meaning becoming Hindu again because they see no future in Islam that preaches hate against the non Moslems .

Now they acknowledge that only through peace the country can make progress to become a developed nation so they are willingly joining hands with others to march in harmony and brotherhood toward a brighter future for themselves and the future generation.

The fundamentalist Moslems say that their faith comes first before the nation but this outdated belief system has only brought them poverty and misery because hate for others who are not like them kept them backward and uneducated so they cannot join in the process of nation building. The vast majority of Moslems fall into the category of poor and backward class called Peshmanda Moslems who eke out a poor living and now want to change it. Their children are now getting the education they need to join the work force to lift their living standard for the first time since independence of 1947.

Girls like Shabnam are a new breed of youngsters who have come forward to defy the status quo and are challenging the old hardliners who refuse to welcome her vision of a bright new India where everyone has the right to join the workforce to make India a 20 trillion dollar economy in the next 10 years. One can already see what is happening now in India that is well underway to become a developed country in the decades to come.

I admire the courage of this young lady and thousands like her who are the leaders who will bring about the change to a brighter future for them by taking the bold steps and to live in harmony and peace with others.

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Amal Chatterjee

I am the village bard who loves to share his stories.