Communal harmony comes to fore in hoisting temple flagpole

The father-son duo of Akbar Ali and Ismael Ahmed being honoured by the Hanuman temple committee on Monday.  

It was a moment of reckoning when the flagpole of the Hanuman temple at Nandi Hills was up in the air facing west instead of east. A panic-stricken priest raised an alarm at the development. “The dhwajasthambam of a temple is very important and the bells on the top known as mekhalalu should face the gopuram. I became worried,” said Seshacharyulu, priest of the temple.

“Rotating a four tonne, 46-foot flagpole after it is up is challenging. I became breathless when I did that,” says Akbar Ali, the crane operator, a little relaxed after the three-hour operation.

His son Ismael clambered on top of the temple to loosen the tensile straps as his father manoeuvred the pillar. As the devotees and visitors cheered and chanted ‘Jai Sri Ram’, Akbar Ali managed to rotate the pillar to face the gopuram. “Sab logon ki dua hai (it is a result of everyone’s prayers),” he said after finishing the job.

After the dhwajasthambam was successfully hoisted to its correct position, the temple committee honoured both Akbar Ali and Ismael with a shawl. “It was a proud day for us and luckily, these two gentlemen saved the day,” said Ramdas, son of the man who built the temple in early 80s.

“Incidentally, the area gets its name from Nandiah who built most of the villas in the hilly area,” informed Srinivas Murthy, an architect who videographed the dramatic turn of events on Monday morning. “It was a warm feeling that the community can come together to solve problems in these troubled times,” said Mr. Murthy.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2022 4:35:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/communal-harmony-comes-to-fore-in-hoisting-temple-flagpole/article37761941.ece

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