Pakistan govt to withdraw cases against 350 accused in temple burning incident, says Hindus pardoned them | India News – News Vibe24

     Pakistan govt to withdraw cases against 350 accused in temple burning incident, says Hindus pardoned them | India News - Times of India
    PESHAWAR: The Pakistani government on Tuesday said it would drop criminal charges against 350 people accused of burning a temple last year, claiming the Hindu community minority had forgiven them.
    According to provincial interior ministry sources, members of the Hindu community decided to pardon the accused in a jar set up by the government to settle the matter. Tsirga is a traditional assembly of elders who make decisions by consensus.
    They said the government had set up a jirga to amicably resolve all issues that have caused unrest among local Muslim and Hindu communities in the area.
    However, Hindus have argued that despite government assurances, the construction of a rest area next to the temple has been unnecessarily delayed, creating unrest in the minority community.
    Haroon Sarab Diyal, a provincial Hindu-Minority and human rights activist, said: “We are not against peace and interfaith harmony, but the way things are being done is against the culture of the people.”
    He complained that the local Hindu community has not received any trust other than Pakistan National Assembly member Teh-e-Justice and Pakistan Hindu Council Chairman Dr. Ramesh K Vankwani.
    Sources said the provincial interior ministry had also written an official letter to the Counter-Terrorism Court informing them of the jirga decision.
    The Government of the Republic of Pakistan had appointed 350 defendants to the FIR for their alleged involvement in the fire in the Samandi of Prem Hans and an adjacent temple in the Terry Karak area last year.
    109 people involved in the attack were arrested, while 92 police officers, including the police inspector and the deputy police inspector, who were on duty at the time, were suspended.
    The Supreme Court had ruled in favor of the case and ordered the provincial government to rebuild Samadhi and the temple.
    Members of the local Hindu community in the Teri Karak area said a house next to the temple was bought by Hindus for pilgrims visiting the temple from distant areas to rest.
    The move sent a false message to the local community that they feared the Hindus wanted to live there. Therefore, a local mob first burned the house under construction and then attacked the adjacent temple and burned Samadhi.
    Shri Paramhans Ji Maharaj Samadhi is considered sacred by the Hindu community. It was built where he died in 1919 in the village of Terry in Karak.
    Hindus are the largest minority community in Pakistan.
    According to official estimates, 75 million Hindus live in Pakistan. However, according to the community, more than 90 million Hindus live in the country.
    The majority of Pakistan’s Hindu population is settled in Sindh province, where they share culture, traditions and language with Muslims. They often complain of harassment by extremists.

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