Durga temple faces destruction in Pakistan
A historical temple of Durga Mata in Pakistan's Sindh district may be destroyed within a month, thanks to the apathy of authorities, warns Tahir Ali
The demolition of Hindu temples in Pakistan for the construction of parks, schools etc is a common phenomenon in Pakistan.
In the latest such incident, some contractors have started digging granite stones at the base of a hill, on top of which a historical temple of Durga Mata is located, in Sindh district. Despite opposition by local Hindus, the digging work is going ahead and the temple may be completely demolished within a month.
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Image: The idol at the temple
'This shows how helpless Hindus are in Pakistan'
The ancient temple is located on top of a hill in Nagarparkar in Tharparkar district of Sindh. A number of Hindu and Jain temples are located in Nagarparkar and its surrounding areas. Most of them date back to 2,000 to 2,500 years.
Instead of trying to put a stop to the digging activity, the Sindh government has issued a lease to a contractor to carry out the work.
Veerjhi Kohli, caretaker of the temple, told rediff.com, "The way the work of blasting is going on, the temple will be demolished within a month. The hill (on which the temple is located) is going to be dug up from all sides, how will the temple survive? The demolition of the temple shows how helpless Hindus living in Pakistan are."
Image: Contractors are digging up the area around the temple
'We Hindus feel alienated in Pakistan'
Veerjhi added, "Some two lakh pilgrims visited the Durga Mata temple during Shivratri. The pilgrims had protested the destruction and urged the government to stop the work, but to no avail. The work was halted during the festival but now it has resumed again."
The Pakistani media also doesn't highlight the destruction of temples, laments Veerjhi, adding that it doesn't focus on the plight of Hindus in the country.
"Neither any TV channel nor any leading newspaper reported our protests. After such incidents, we Hindus feel alienated in Pakistan," he told rediff.com.
Hindu activists have approached local political figures and other concerned authorities but none of them have offered to help. "We were shocked by the district coordination officer's remark, who said the temple was safe and there was no risk to it from the digging," Veerjhi said.
Image: Contractors' machines at the base of the hill