Due to the pandemic, the walk has been turned into a virtual event since 2020. “With the pandemic continuing, we will be hosting a virtual interfaith iftar evening on May 12 from 5.15 to 6.30 pm. For this year’s iftar evening, we have invited people from different spheres. Ashok Khubchandani of Sufidar Trust is one of the participants. The Sufidar Trust volunteers are mainly from the Sindhi Hindu community in the city - they have been serving the nombu kanji and other refreshments required to break the fast at the Wallajah Mosque in Triplicane for more than three decades. Another participant is Fr Joseph Victor Edwin SJ, he is a Jesuit (Catholic priest) teaching Theology and Christian-Muslim relations at Vidyajoti College of Theology, Delhi. He will be talking about the importance of Ramzan,” says Anwar.
The filmmaker, who works on the history of Muslims in Tamil Nadu, tells us that today there is a lot of misunderstanding about Islam. “Through this virtual event, we are looking at breaking the stereotypes. People should understand that Muslims are not a monolithic community. There are many cultures among Muslims and we will be talking about it. Though the focus is Ramzan, we are also looking at different diverse voices in the community. Other participants are Prof. PK Abdul Rahiman, who heads the JBAS Centre for Islamic Studies at the University of Madras, Shazia Andaleeb, a freelance writer who studies Islam and Gender and works in the non-profit space focussing on girl’s education, Tasneem Akbari-Kutubuddin, who works on Bohra history in Chennai, Huda Ahsan, a student of architecture, who is currently doing research on gender, sexuality and inclusivity in Islam and musician Izza Ahsan. We will be talking about our shared heritage with the focus on gender, inclusivity and diversity of beliefs and cultures within Islam,” he adds.