Malerkotla, Punjab’s Newest District, Has No Room for Religious Bigotry
On May 14,… Malerkotla had officially become Punjab’s 23rd district, fulfilling a demand the people of the Muslim-majority city had been making for over two decades…. The Punjab government incorporated the non-Muslim areas of Ahmedgarh subdivision and Amargarh mandi into its 23rd district, which helps the residents of these areas to easily access their district headquarters too…. Many people believe the city serves as a lesson at this time of heightened religious conflicts….
While Hindu-Muslim tension has often flared up in India, Malerkotla has always remained peaceful, added the professor. “When the whole of Punjab burned at the time of partition, Muslims in Malerkotla were safe,” said Harjeshwar. “When the Babri Masjid was demolished, people of all faiths gathered to keep the peace. Malerkotla serves as an example for the rest of the country.”
The decision of the Punjab government to name Malerkotla’s new medical college after Nawab Mohammad Khan is a testimony to the role that the Muslim rulers of Malerkotla had played in keeping communal amity alive, said local journalist Anwar Mehboob