Muslim sisters in Kovai recite Bhagavad Gita

via M Rafi Ahmed @ published on September 7, 2009

COIMBATORE: Muslim girls reciting the Quran is no news. Two Muslim school going girls, sisters, have learnt to recite the Bhagavad Gita and have carved a niche for themselves in singing the shlokas (verses) that have become a regular feature at their school prayer.

Taking a cue from Salma Sulthana of Godur village in Andhra Pradesh, who had mastered reciting Sanskrit shlokas, the sisters — M Shajitha Banu and M Madina Parvin — developed an interest in this art.

Banu, a Class XI student of Ramnagar Suburban Higher Secondary School, told Express that she was enthused after listening to shlokas from the Bhag­avad Gita recited by Bavadharini, a Brahmin classmate  during school prayers.

“I was very much attracted to it and expressed my desire to learn the shlokas. My friend (Bavadharini) came forward to teach me the shlokas from Bhagavad Gita, without any second thoughts,” says Banu.

“I started practising it right from Class VI with her help. She taught me one sloka everyday which I used to memorise and recite the next day and my friend used to rectify mistakes. Slowly and steadily I learnt the nuances of reciting the shlokas with ease and accuracy. All credit goes to my friend Bhavadharini who took the pain to spare time and teach me,” she says with gratitude.

Banu taught her sister Madina Parvin, a Class IX student of the same school. While Banu can recite 12 shlokas, Parvin has learnt six. While memorising all 700 verses is a difficult exercise, the duo are determined to make an attempt to learn it completely.

Although they do not know the meaning of the shlokas, they were able to give a synopsis of the Bhagavad Gita by saying that it is part of Mahabharata and is the conversation between Krishna and Arjuna that took place at the battlefield before the start of the Kurukshetra war.

The sisters have now become a centre of attraction at the school with their headmaster G Subramanian encouraging their pursuit.

Interestingly, their parents were only too proud of their daughters’ feat. Despite poverty, their father Mohamed Ali Jinnah, an autodriver is determined to educate them.

While Banu wants to pursue a civil engineering degree, Parvin’s interest is to pursue medicine and specialise in cardiology.

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