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news details
Chamblyal fair: BSF, Pak Rangers talk ‘peace’ at IB
6/25/2009 10:43:20 PM

Early Times report
Jammu, Jun 25: Despite recent tensions emerged between the two neighbours India and Pakistan after Mumbai terrorist attacks, it was bonhomie that was witnessed today at a religious fair at Chamlyal as both Border Security Force (BSF) and Pak Rangers shared hugs and discussed restoration of peace at an annual Baba Chamliyal Fair organised on International Border (IB) at Zero Line in Ramgarh Sector of Samba district.
They exchanged sweets and gifts to observe the annual affair as thousands of people from different parts visited the shrine of Baba Chamliyal on both sides of the border.
Religious fervor and spiritualism once again have enveloped the border town, as the fair (mela) is being organised in the memory of saint Baba Daleep Singh Manhas, more popular as ‘Baba Chamliyal’, who spent his entire life in preaching peace and love.
Pakistan Ranger Sector (Sialkot) Brigadier Masud told reporters, ‘’the festival will serve as a strong foundation for the ongoing peace process. It has brought the people of the two neighbouring nations close to each other.’’
The Pak Ranger however, who arrived at zeroline accompanied by other officers said, ‘’thousands of people on both sides of the border visit the shrine every year and pray for peace and harmony.’’
Earlier DIG BSF, A K Sharma said, ‘As confidence building measures (CBMs) are in progress and they are coming up besides our frequent meetings.’ The DIG added that both the agencies are acting as facilitators as BSF and Pak Rangers are functioning as per the policies framed by their respective governments.
We are acting as per the policies of our governments. Efforts are on to maintain and restore peace and tranquility in the regions, said Mr Sharma.
However, the border rules apparently became soft for the moment when a group of people across the border met and exchanged pleasantries and gifts on the zeroline to celebrate the day and devotees danced at the shrine of Baba Chamlayal.
A great enthusiasm among the people regarding the celebration of this annual fair was also noticed from the zero line as more than one lakh people assembled on Pakistani side at village Saidan Wali to celebrate the religious day.
The historic Chamliyal Mela is a ray of hope for the people suffering from skin diseases as the legend reveals that anyone suffering from skin ailments can be cured by pasting Shakkar (clay) and drinking Sharbat (water) at the shrine.
Meanwhile Pak Rangers as per tradition, this year also offered ‘Chaddar’ for the tomb of the Baba while BSF in return gave ‘trolleys of Shakkar’(soil) and ‘Sharbat’ (holy water) which was received by the DIG BSF A K Sharma amidst the holy lores sung in favour of Almighty and Baba ji.
Lakhs of devotees within and the neighbouring states paid obeisance at the shrine of Baba Chamliyal. The fair would conclude at Chamliyal late this evening while on Pakistani side it would conclude after two days.
According to legends revered Baba Chamliyal,- Daleep Singh Manhas, a resident of village Chamliyal, was known for his powers. He was beheaded by some criminals, who dropped his body at village Saidan Wali in Pakistan, 300 meters from International Border and head on the opposite side now famous as Chamliyal.
Every year in the month of June, this historic Mela is organised at the shrine of Baba and been recognised as a symbol of Hindu-Muslim unity and brotherhood on the zeroline having age-old tradition of maintaining love, peace and amity.
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