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Archive for January 12th, 2010

Sarita Apartments

17 Apartments

15 Familes (divided into) :-

– 2 Jains
– 2 Christians
– 4 Muslims
– 9 Hindus

– Gujratis
– Marwaris
– Maharashtrians
– Andhraites
– Kannadigas

1 PG accomodation

4 Shops

This is where I stay. Sarita Apartments. A Small stand-alone building. You would hardly be able to recognise it from the imposing buildings flanking it.

Honestly, the first time I saw it, I was less than impressed. Unsure of why the BF had invested so much in it.

But three years after I stepped into it, I love it. I love living here.
I love the neighbours. I love the children in our society.
It has been an eye-opening experience. People here are so diverse, coming from different regions, religions, yet living with such harmony. Its amazing. Really.

We hear of so much discord in housing societies, with neighbours less than tolerant of each other’s cooking, children, lifestyle, etc. But here, its all hunky-dory. We rarely keep our doors locked, as the society kids are welcome any time of the day. Its the same across all the other flats. The twins are taken away by our neighbours regularly.

Sometimes, it just feels like we are one big happy family. There do exist a couple of families who are not so outgoing. But when they do meet us, its with genuine pleasure and warmth. Except for the girls staying in the PG accomodation,all the residents are flat owners. Which is good, because there is very little chance of people moving away.

Being a hot-pot of different religions, our building celebrates each festival with equal fervour. So the whole building is lit up for Diwali, Eid, Christmas, New Year, Baisakhi, Republic day, Independence day, etc. You name an event, and out come the string lights!!! It is routine for us to distribute ‘Shirkurma’ and ‘Sewai’ to all the houses on Eid. Similarly, come Diwali and our kitchen table top is laden with ‘Faral’ and ‘laddoos’. On Christmas, we are loaded with fruit cakes and ice-cream 🙂 .

Even otherwise, when someone is cooking something special, they make it a point to distribute it to all the families in the building.

This friendship and camaraderie is not an act. It is true that people nowadays prefer to stay in societies where people of the same culture/background/race/caste/religion stay. But in Sarita Apartments, we have people of all different castes and religion. And yet, we all stay together as one. We are all tied to each other. Every family makes an effort towards this,and it shows.

It proves that tolerance is not just a word to be used during elections. It is a sentiment which becomes a habit IF you want it to. Its not that there are no differences between the different families. But tolerance allows us to forgive and forget and move on.

The advantage??

We can give our children the security of knowing that they can be friends with anyone. The religion or caste does not matter.

We can give our children the opportunity of learning the ways of worship other than our own.

We can give our children a chance to FEEL the love for people different than them.

We can teach them to be tolerant of other people.

And best part, we teach our children to be loving responsible citizens.

I seriously wish, people come out of their ghettos and learn to mix with people who are unlike them. Take the opportunity of mixing with different cultures.

I wish there were more such Sarita Apartments in this country!!

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