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Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Starting and breaking fast with Cannon blast in Raisen: Age-old tradition during Ramzan in Madhya Pradesh

It is an age-old tradition that continues till date.

Everyday during the holy month of Ramzan, the devout start and break their fast with the sound of cannon blast in Raisen.

The cannon is taken up to the fort on the top of the hill just before Ramzan [Ramadan] every year, in this Madhya Pradesh town.

This old cannon is kept in the Collectorate's treasury for the remaining part of the year.

However, during Ramzan, it is taken to the fort, and it's fired twice--before dawn when the 'roza' [fast] begins and later in the evening, to signal the 'iftar' [breaking the fast].

It is probably the only place in the country where this tradition continues. Raisen is now a district but was once part of Bhopal riyasat, the princely state of Bhopal, and is situated nearly 35 km from Bhopal.

Sakhawatullah now has the responsibility to fire the cannon. The Shahar Qazi, municipal corporation and local Muslims jointly bear the expenses of the gunpowder that is used every year to fire the cannon, here.

The cannon blast sound is heard for several kilometers as it is fired from the top of the hill. People in the town and scores of villages nearby break their fast with the 'top ki awaz'. Photo Courtesy: Dainik Bhaskar

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