Indian Christian builds Mary Mosque in UAE, serves 700 Iftar food daily

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Abu Dhabi — An Indian Christian businessman has built a mosque in Fujairah area of UAE and serves more than 700 Iftaar meals for workers of Industrial areas during the holy month of Ramadan.

According to Khaleej Times, Saji Cheriyan built the Mariam Umm Eisa (Mary, the Mother of Jesus) mosque in Al-Hail Industrial Area last year for thousands of workers in the emirate.

Cheriyan said that his humanitarian project enhances compassion between the workers and brings them together after a long day of work.

Before Cheriyan decided to build the mosque, he used to go to Government-sponsored Iftaar tents to distribute food to the workers, later he noticed that workers had to walk long distances under the scorching sun to reach the mosque, eventually he approached General Authority for Islamic Affairs and Endowments in Fujairah to obtain all necessary permits and started building the mosque.

When the locals and residents came to know about his gracious act, he received several offers to contribute for the mosque, but he decided to build it alone.

Cheriyan came to Dubai in 2003 with just 630 Dirhams with no proper job contracts. He started as a construction worker, then became a contractor and now he works as a real estate developer.

Abdul Qayum, a 63-year-old Pakistani bus driver, who had Iftar on Wednesday, was all praise for Saji’s efforts.

“The world needs people like him. If there are no people like him, the world will end. We are praying for him. Allah will bless him,” he said.

Vajas Abdul Wahid, an Indian assistant manager with a company in the locality, said the mosque and the Iftar hosted by Saji were beneficial not just for the workers in the area.

“There are employees of more than 50 companies living in this area. Senior employees and labourers are staying in separate accommodations. But, when we come here, we are all equal. We pray and have Iftar together,” Vajas said.

A mosque with the similar name is located in Al Mushrif, a central neighborhood in the city of Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates.

It was built in 1989 as Mohammed Bin Zayed Mosque but on 14 June 2017 Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan decided to rename the mosque to “Mary, Mother of Jesus Mosque” in order to exemplify the values of co-existence among religions in the UAE.

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