Nizamuddin shrine, the ornately divine seat of spiritual solace, was heavenly lit and engulfed in the groove of qawwali. Blended with biryani aroma, topped with smoke of the incense can move anybody and that day was no different. A sweet child with a skullcap over his head, sat all attentive in the courtyard of the Tabib-e-Dil, as a solace seeker amidst the human chaos. Such a sight can put anyone in trance, I was no exception. I met another seeker while he was in queue, waiting for his turn to fetch some tabarruk (blessings) for him and his friends; of course love for biryani surmounts all the bans. These three friends might have been twenty-something, but the way they carried themselves, anybody could’ve figured out that they were regulars.
Sheroz sat beside me, along with a friend who had gleaming eyes, a saffron wrist band wrapped religiously, thick long hair and a visibly impoverished background. It was apparently impossible to afford a harmonium for this league of harbingers of communal harmony. Flash of an eye and magic took over the shrine, enshrining everyone in the realms of divinity. His friend was sitting just next to main qawwal. A few words of praise were due and I delivered them in no time, “What an artist!”
Shehroz replied to my compliment taking great pride, “You haven’t heard him sing yet”, and in a jiffy he started singing, ‘Bhar do joli meri ya Muhammad’.
Everyone was mesmerized and out of curiosity, I inquired about his name. Shehroz did not answer. He was in absolute trance listening his friend singing mellifluously, with tears rolling from his eyes, I dared to repeat my question again, “Who’s that boy?”Shehroz looked at me with teary eyes, blanketing the visible religious contrasts under his warmth of affection for his friend.
He called on his friend, “Vivek! Let’s go, we are getting late”. They both left the courtyard holding hands, smiling and left behind a question for our souls. “Are we even qualified to judge humanity on basis of our scarce understanding of it?”