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External Affairs Minister Jaishankar unveils plaque at historic Indian Hospice in Jerusalem

According to legend, Sufi saint Baba Farid came to the Holy City of Jerusalem from India in 1200 AD and meditated in a stone lodge for 40 days.

Published: 18th October 2021 09:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th October 2021 09:45 PM   |  A+A-

Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (Photo| Twitter)

By PTI

JERUSALEM: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Monday unveiled a plaque at the famed Indian Hospice inside the walls of Jerusalem's Old City, symbolising India's age-old civilisational connection to the region.

The plaque read: "Indian Hospice, Estd.12th century A.D., supported by Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi".

According to legend, Sufi saint Baba Farid came to the Holy City of Jerusalem from India in 1200 AD and meditated in a stone lodge for 40 days.

Ever since, Indian Muslim pilgrims on their way to or from Mecca have visited the site, eventually being called the Indian Hospice.

Hospice generally refers to a hospital or care centre for terminally ill persons.

Addressing a gathering of the Indian community on Sunday evening, Jaishankar had said "India's connections with Jerusalem goes back 800 years in time".

"One of our revered Sufi saints, Baba Farid, meditated in a cave inside the city walls in Jerusalem. And this place later became a shrine and a pilgrim lodge for travellers from India. Today, this Indian Hospice symbolises India's presence in the Old City," he added.

The street connecting the hospice is named 'Zawiyat El-Hunud' meaning "the Indian corner".

During World War II, the Indian Hospice was utilised as a leave camp for the Indian soldiers who served in the British Army in the Middle East.

The government of India has been contributing for the upkeep and maintenance of the hospice since 1960.

Later, Jaishankar visited the Israel Museum in the capital city.

"Visited the Kadavumbagam Synagogue at the Israel Museum. So happy to meet the younger members of the Cochini-Jewish community there," the minister tweeted, attaching photographs of a section at the gallery dedicated to the Jewish place of worship in Ernakulam, Kerala.

The 820-year-old Kadavumbagam Synagogue is one of the oldest centres of Jewish heritage in India.



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