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A simple man, not a hero, says man who saved 50 Amarnath pilgrims

To felicitate him, a Pune based social organisation Sarhad organised an event at the SM Joshi socialist foundation, near Navi Peth, on Tuesday.

pune Updated: Jul 26, 2017 13:42 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Amarnath,Terrorist attack
At the event, which had dignitaries like Dr Baba Adhav present to honour Sheikh, the horrific episode of the terror attack which left 21 injured and seven dead, was revisited with Sheikh’s firsthand account.(HT PHOTO)

“I am simple man, not a hero. Whatever I have been able to accomplish is because of God’s help,” said Salim Sheikh, India’s hero, who saved 50 Amarnath pilgrims who had been attacked on July 10.

To felicitate him, a Pune based social organisation Sarhad organised an event at theSM Joshi socialist foundation, near Navi Peth, on Tuesday.

At the event, which had dignitaries like Dr Baba Adhav present to honour Sheikh, the horrific episode of the terror attack which left 21 injured and seven dead, was revisited with Sheikh’s firsthand account.

“The group which was travelling was from Gujarat. I still remember, how one of them use to prepare wheat chapatis for me since hailed from Maharashtra and was use to eating that, as opposed to the rice flour roti they consumed,” he shared. She could not be saved, Sheikh added.

Driving a 56-seater for more that 2 kilometres despite a flat tyre and bullets swishing by, through a dark mountainous range, he saved fifty lives. His act of bravery goes beyond all borders, communal especially, pointed out Dr Baba Adhav.

Declining the existence of a communal disparity, he said, “I was born in a village in Maharashtra, where 25 houses were of Muslim families and the rest 350 houses were of Hindu families, and even in school, in my class I was the only Muslim student, yet I have never realised or experienced any sense of difference between Hindu and Muslims. After this I came to Balsar village in Gujarat, where again I did not experience any sort of communal divide. So this sort of thought has never harboured in my mind. And, on that day, we were all in a good mood, having visited Baba Amarnath. The accident was unfortunate.”

“The people who have done this heinous deed do not have any religion. Islam does not preach violence, and their ideas could never have roots in it. I have never grown up exclusively as a different Muslim individual, I am an Indian and I am proud of it,” he added.

“If opportunity permits, I will once again go for Baba’s darshan,” he said.

First Published: Jul 26, 2017 13:42 IST