PTI MPA urges saving Hindu temple


The issue of the threat posed to a 150-year-old Hindu temple in Clifton by the construction of an underpass nearby was raised twice by an opposition MPA during the Sindh Assembly proceedings on Friday.

Khurram Sher Zaman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf pointed out that the Ratneshwar Mahadev temple near the Jehangir Kothari Parade, located in his constituency, was under threat because of an illegal plan to build an underpass there.

First he raised the matter on a point of order, just after the House had assembled and then when the proceedings were adjourned for Friday prayers.

Zaman was compelled to raise the issue for the second time as he was unsatisfied with the assurances given to him on the problem by the speaker and treasury members.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Dr Sikandar Mandhro assured the anxious MPA that the matter would be taken up with the Sindh Building Control Authority (SCBA) to check for any irregularity in the construction of the underpass.

Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani noted that if underpass’ construction was already under way, then the project surely would have been approved by the SBCA.

Later, Minorities Affairs Minister Gyan Chand Essarani said the Pakistan Peoples Party’s believed in preserving the worship places of minorities as well as constructing new ones.

Therefore, he added, the provincial government would ensure that the temple faced no threat.

Zaman told the House that heavy excavation work and drilling for the construction of the underpass could cause the cavern in which the temple was located to collapse.
He added that the destruction of the historical temple could have serious consequences for the mosques in India and the Muslim community there.

The MPA said the members of Hindu community living in his constituency had been constantly approaching him to convey their reservations over the matter.
Zaman said the builders of the underpass had not obtained no-objection certificates from the relevant civic agencies for the project.

Minority MPA Nand Kumar of the Pakistan Muslim League-Functional raised the issue of a temple being attacked in Hyderabad on Friday morning.
He said a similar attack had been carried out recently in Larkana.
It seems that the Hindu community in Sindh ate being forced to leave and issue need to be dealt with urgently,” he added.

The minorities minister told Kumar that the Hyderabad DIG had been directed to investigate the attack on the temple.

Source: The News