In a shameful incident, a mob of over hundred people led by local Muslim clerics reportedly destroyed and set on fire a Hindu temple in Karak district of Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on Wednesday. Also Read - Twitter User Complains About Porn Literature on Kindle, Amazon Removes 'Hindu Wife's Affair With Muslim Lover' Title After NCW Notice
According to Daily Times, a rally was organised by Jamiat Ulema-e Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), a Sunni Deobandi political party in Pakistan nearby where speakers delivered fiery speeches after which the charged crowd stormed the temple, set it ablaze and razed it to the ground. The report quoted JUI-F KP Amir Maulana Ataur Rahman who said his party has nothing to do with the burning down of the temple as it happened after their party’s rally.
Many videos of the incident have surfaced on social media showing a group of men breaking the walls and roof of the temple, while smoke billows from the structure. It is also being said that local administration and police officials remained silent spectators as the temple was razed to the ground. No case has been registered and neither any arrest made so far in the incident.
The act against Hindu minority community is widely condemned by human rights activists based in Pakistan and other parts of the world.
Shama Junejo, a London-based human rights activist tweeted, “This is new Pakistan! A Hindu Temple was destroyed today in Karak, a city in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, governed by PTI Govt. Police or forces didn’t stop the mob because they were chanting Allah-o-Akbar. A shameful day, Beyond condemnation indeed!”
Here’s how others reacted:
Rabia Mehmood, a researcher and journalist also condemned the attack on religious sites, saying ,”2020 in Pakistan: Hindu temple in Karak, KP brutally vandalized and demolished by a violent mob. While the Pakistan government is fixated on the rise of hindutva in India, the fascists at home continue attacking non Muslim Pakistanis with impunity”.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan termed the attack on the temple as “an unfortunate incident.” He has sought an early report from the police on the matter and ordered immediate arrest of those involved in the incident. Khan vowed that his government will protect worship places from such incidents.
This is not a standalone incident as incidents of violence against the minority community in Sindh have frequently been reported. In October, a Hindu temple was vandalised and idols destroyed by a person in Pakistan’s southeast Sindh province. Hindus form the biggest minority community in Pakistan. According to the official estimates, 75 lakh Hindus live in Pakistan, mostly in Sindh province.