In a bid to fulfill it’s long standing demand and commitment towards Hindu community living in Pakistan, the federal government has decided to restore and reopen over 400 Hindu temples across the country in phases and hand it over to minority Hindus.
Temple converted into Madrassas
As history tells us, majority of Hindus dwelling in Pakistan crossed the border and settled in India during the partition. Although, Hindus who stayed back, failed to visit temple as the lands where takenover by locals. Some temple lands ended up turning into Madrassa
For the betterment of Hindu- community, The Imran Khan-led Pakistan government announced that they will reclaim the temples, restore them and give them back to the Hindus.
A gesture of social harmony & peace
Two temples per year
As Pakistan government has shown its interest in restoring 400 temples, since there are large number of temples, they will restore two temples per year, and will start with the temples in Sialkot and Peshawar. Sialkot has a functioning Jagannath temple and a 1000 year old Shivalaya Teja Singh temple. Soon after the Babri Masjid demolition, The Shivalaya Teja Singh temple was attacked by a mob and is still abandoned.
A survey conducted by All-Pakistan Hindu Rights Movement (APHRM) across the country found that while 428 Hindu temple existed on the soil of Pakistan, however, 408 of them were converted into restaurant, schools, government offices, and toy stores post 1990.
As per Pakistan government survey recently, at least 11 temples in Sindh, four in Punjab, three in Balochistan and two in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were operational in 2019.
Attempt to improve relationship with neighbours
Experts believes that these latest attempts are made to mend the bridge between Indian and Pakistan. Imran Khan further nodded to open the gates for Karatarpur Sahib corridor to aid Indians to vist Guru Nanak’s birthplace.
As per India Today, Pakistan is also considering plans to allow Pakistani Hindus to visit the Sharda Peeth, an old temple situated in Pakistan occupied Kashmir.