Bareilly,Sep.22 : A man in Bareilly is promoting Hindu-Muslim brotherhood with his unique hobby to collect currency notes bearing 786, the numerical form of Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim, as their last three digits.
Forty eight-year-old Anjai Agarwal, who is a Hindu by religion, has managed to collect 571 currency notes worth rupees 58,000.
Anjai started collecting such currency notes in 1980s after his father motivated him to do so.
"My motive was to do something for Hindu-Muslim unity and this currency note collection came into my mind. My father remained my inspiration as we had good relations with Muslims who used to attend our family functions and we also attended theirs. This was the only thought that came into my mind and indeed, I have felt proud doing this," said Anjai Agarwal, collector of currency notes bearing the numbers 786 as the last digits.
Many Hindus and Muslims believe such an interest of collecting currency notes carrying 786 is a good gesture that promotes harmony between members of both the communities.
He has today raised a collection of over 100 currency notes, each worth a hundred rupees, three notes each worth a thousand rupees, over two dozen notes of worth 500 rupees and several notes worth rupees 50, 20 and 10.
Anjai is keen to collect currency notes worth five, two and one.
Even at time when Anjai needed money, he didn't use his collection of 786 currency notes.
Local Muslims including clerics in the city often visit Anjai's house and take a look at his note collection. They are happy to notice that a Hindus revering 786 with utmost devotion and interest.
"786 is the numerical form of ' Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim'. We read the same number at a lot of places. When we came to know Anjai Agarwal's secular deed many people came to meet and share their good wishes. All have praised him for this unique act and nobody else has done something what he has done," said Mohammad Mateen, a former Principal, Malik Mohammad Jaisi Inter College.
Anjai's daughter Anshika says that she was unaware about her dad's passion when she was quite young. She would ask him to give her money from his currency collection.
"Initially, we thought these notes were of no use to us. But later, we understood his passion for this collection. Now we don't feel awkward about his hobby. We also help him whenever we can," said Anshika Agarwal, daughter of Anjai Agarwal.
Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim' (or, In the name of God, the most gracious, the most merciful) has a special significance for Muslims, who are to begin each task after reciting the verse.
The total value of the letters of "Bismillah al-Rahman al-Rahim" according to one Arabic system of nume]rology is 786. By Nazia Anjum