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LAHORE – The 428th Mela Charaghan started at the shrine of Madho Lal here on Saturday.

A large number of devotees are attending the annual three-day Urs celebrations of the subcontinent’s Sufi saint, at his shrine in Baghbanpura.

Religious and spiritual meetings will be held and religious scholars will threw light on the teachings of Shah Hussain.

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Every year, devotees from all over the country lay floral wreaths at the graves of Shah Hussain and Madho Lal, performing dhamal at the shrine, lighting candles for fulfilment of their prayers and wishes and distributing charity food, including water, milk and juices.

The third day of the urs has been declared exclusively for women.

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The Urs starts with a large fire at the shrine and lighting candles.

Mela Charaghan has its own importance in Lahore’s history, as it has been a biggest festival of Lahore in some times. The festival was started with the seasonal Baisakhi festival in old times.

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Coming from a poor family, Shah Hussain lived during the Mughal’s rules in the subcontinent. He was an educated person and used the power of poetry to convey his message to the masses.

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His Kafis have special significance in Punjabi poetry, as he spread his message of humanity, love, and peace.

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Several singers including Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Noor Jehan and Janoon band have sung his Kafis.

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Shah Hussain’s love for a Brahmin boy called “Madho” or “Madho Lal” is famous, and they are often referred to as a single person with the composite name of “Madho Lal Hussain”. Madho’s tomb lies next to Hussain’s in the shrine.

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His tomb and shrine is located at the Baghbanpura precincts, adjacent to the Shalimar Gardens Lahore, Pakistan.

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His Urs (annual death anniversary) is celebrated at his shrine every year during the “Mela Charaghan” (Festival of Lights).