Bangladesh PM prays at Ajmer shrine


Jaipur : Amid tight security, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Wednesday offered prayers at Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti’s shrine in Ajmer.

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“She along with 17 members of her delegation arrived at the dargah at around 12.50 p.m. and spent 50 minutes at the premises,” Ahmed Raza, dargah nazim (shrine official) told IANS on phone from Ajmer.

Laying a sheet over the grave of medieval Sufi saint Chishti, Hasina performed her ziyarat with the help of Khadim Kamaluddin Chisti, the official said.

She also gifted Rs.150,000 to the shrine, he added.

The officials who look after the shrine as a hereditary duty welcomed the Bangladesh premier and offered her a biography of Chisti and a sword.

The shrine in the Rajasthan town is one of the most important pilgrimage centres in South Asia for people of all faiths. Millions of people from all over the world go on the pilgrimage to Ajmer every year. This shrine is dedicated to the Sufi saint who came to Ajmer from Persia in 1192.

Unprecedented security arrangements were put in place at the shrine for Hasina’s visit.

The main market nearby was closed and even windows facing the shrine were not allowed to be opened. Commandos were deployed on roof-tops of adjacent buildings.

Earlier, Hasina arrived at Sanganer Airport here this morning with an entourage of 100 members.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot received her at the airport from where she and 17 other members left for Ajmer in an Indian Air Force helicopter, officials said.

The other members of her delegation went on a sightseeing tour of the Pink City.