On Saturday, December 23, 2023, a group of four pilgrims from Kerala visited the Ullal Dargah in Mangaluru, Karnataka. After paying their respects at the shrine, they decided to go to the nearby Summer Sand Beach for a swim. However, they were unaware of the strong currents and waves at the beach, and soon found themselves in trouble. Three of them drowned in the sea, while one was rescued by the locals and the police.
Who were the victims?
The victims were identified as Muhammad Shafi (32), Abdul Salam (28), and Muhammad Rafi (26), all hailing from Malappuram district in Kerala. They were part of a larger group of 12 pilgrims who had come to Mangaluru by train. The survivor was Muhammad Shafeeq (24), who managed to swim back to the shore and alert the others.
How did the rescue operation take place?
According to the police, the incident occurred around 3 pm on Saturday. The locals who witnessed the drowning informed the police and the fire brigade, who rushed to the spot. The police also alerted the Coast Guard and the Indian Navy, who joined the search and rescue operation. The bodies of the three victims were recovered by the evening, after a four-hour-long operation. The survivor was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment and observation.
What is the reaction of the authorities and the relatives?
The police have registered a case of accidental death and are investigating the circumstances of the incident. They have also warned the public to avoid swimming at the beach, especially during the monsoon season, when the sea is rough and unpredictable. The relatives of the victims have been informed and are on their way to Mangaluru to claim the bodies. They have expressed their shock and grief over the tragic loss of their loved ones.
What is the significance of the Ullal Dargah?
The Ullal Dargah, also known as the Sayyid Muhammad Shareeful Madani Dargah, is a popular pilgrimage site for Muslims in South India. It is the tomb of a 16th-century Sufi saint who came to India from Madinah, Saudi Arabia. He is revered for his miracles and teachings, and is believed to grant the wishes of his devotees. Thousands of pilgrims visit the dargah every year, especially during the annual urs festival, which is held in February.