Kochi: It could have been just another post by a son mourning the death of his foster mother. But for a twist. It was a Hindu man mourning the loss of his Muslim foster mother that brought many to tears. (Also read: Jharkhand Minister Caught ‘Taking Bribe’ in Viral Video, 1 Held)
Subaida Thennad died last month and it would have been a quiet affair in her village had her foster son Sreedharan not put up a Facebook post recently saying “my Umma (mother) has honoured the summons of Allah. Please pray for her soul”. The post and the subsequent comments on it revealed a maternal love that went beyond religion and faith.
It turned out that Muslim couple Subaida and Abdul Azeez Haji had fostered Sreedharan and his elder sisters Ramani and Leela from the day their mother Chakki died, when Sreedharan, now 46, was one.
The trio grew up in Subaida’s house practising Hindu rites along with the Muslim couple’s three biological children. In the mornings, three of them went to the temple and the other three to the madarsa.
Likewise, in the evenings, the Muslim children read the Quran while Subaida’s foster children prayed to god with folded hands. “Our foster parents brought us up like their own children and educated us. They got my sisters married. Though we were taken in at an impressionable age, they never tried to convert us. For us, she is no foster mother; she is our own mother,” Sreedharan reportedly said in his FB post.
News of Subaida’s death shattered him. He sat crying in his room in Oman, holding bottles of perfume he had bought for his mother. Reportedly, he couldn’t get himself to rush back home as he couldn’t muster the courage to see her body.
“If there is heaven, Subaida is sure to be found there,” a leading daily quoted social worker AP Ahamed as saying. “In these days of forced conversions and religious fundamentalism, such paragons of goodness have to be celebrated,” he told the daily.
Ahamed is now planning to hold an all-party meeting at Kalikavu to commemorate Subaida. He said he was sure such stories of harmony will help reduce the gulf between the secular and those who follow different faiths.