One person has been arrested after a Hindu temple was desecrated in Pakistan’s southeast Sindh province.
Local police registered an FIR on the incident at the Shri Ramdev Temple in Kario Ghanwar area of Badin district and arrested Muhammad Ismail Sheedi, a local, who was named by complainant Ashok Kumar as the person believed to have caused the desecration.
Police officer Badin Shabir Sethar told local media that he had ordered an investigation and sought an inquiry report within 24 hours.
He also said that he suspected the accused was of unsound mind. “We are yet to confirm if he (Ismail) is mentally stable and intentionally destroyed the murtis (idols),” he said, adding that Ismail is also a drug addict.
Hindus form the biggest minority community in Pakistan.
The community mainly resides in the Sindh province. Kario Ghanwar is home to the Hindu Kolhi, Menghwar, Guwaria and Karia communities.
According to the official estimates, 75 lakh Hindus live in Pakistan.
Incidents of violence against the minority community in Sindh have frequently been reported.
Condemning the vandalism, London-based Pakistani human rights activist and spokeswoman for Justice for Minorities in Pakistan Anila Gulzar said only 20 temples out of 428 are left.
“I strongly condemn the brutal act of vandalism committed against Shri Ram Mandir in Badin Sindh Pakistan on 10 October. Out of 428 only 20 mandirs are left in Sindh,” Gulzar said in a Facebook post.
In May, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan had condemned the razing of houses of people from the Hindu and Christian communities in Punjab province’s Bahawalpur city.
A video of a similar incident had surfaced on the internet earlier this year in which a basti of a minority Hindu community in Bhawalpur was demolished. The demolition exercise was carried out under the watch of Tariq Bashir Cheema, the housing minister in the Imran Khan government, and the country’s principal Information officer Shahid Khokhar.
(With inputs from Agencies)
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