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The Legend of Gazi

According to some myths and legends, Gazi pir was a Muslim saint who is said to have spread Islam in the parts of Bengal close to the Sunderbans. He was credited  with many miracles. For example, he could supposedly calm dangerous animals and make them docile. 
He is usually depicted in paats or scroll painting riding a fierce-looking Bengal tiger, a snake in his hand, but in no apparent danger. According to some stories, he also fought crocodiles who threatened the people of a region full of canals and creeks, indeed, a kind of watery jungle bordering the Bay of Bengal. 

The Legend of Gazi
Because of his alert and vigilant presence, all predatory animals were said to have been kept within bounds. It was also believed that he enabled villagers to live close to forests and jungle and cultivate their lands. Consequently, people of these region would pray to him for protection. 

The story of Gazi pir has been preserved in folk literature as well as art and has been performed in indigenous theatre. In fact, some Gazir paat scrolls are part of the collection of the British Museum. 

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