A 200-year old temple located in Zhob, Balochistan was handed back to the Hindu community on Thursday after 70 years.
The temple had been in the possession of one Maulana Allah Dad Kakar, who formally handed it over to a Hindu pandit during a ceremony.
Deputy Commissioner Talha Saleem, who was present at the ceremony, expressed a desire to establish a tolerant society which accepts all religions and faiths while handing over the keys of the temple to the Hindu community, reported Hindustan Times.
“Today is an important day in the history of Balochistan. This is an example of religious harmony. Maulana Allah Dad, the khateeb of the [local] Jama Masjid, not only supported the decision but also participated as a special guest at the ceremony,” Saleem said while addressing the crowd.
“The world should see how deeply our scholars have embraced the minority community.”
“We apologise to the minority community for the delay,” he said, assuring them that the restoration of the temple will also be completed soon.
After restoration and renovation of the building, members of the Hindu community will be able to use it as a place of worship.
The decision was met with happiness by the Hindu community in Zhob.
Saleem Jan, the chairman of the committee for the minority community in Zhob, told Urdu News that it was a matter of great pleasure to visit the temple after 70 years.
“Some time ago, Balochistan High Court Chief Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail had visited the temple when we requested that the building be handed over to the Hindu community. He had assured us and today we are thankful to the district administration and him for meeting our demand.”
According to Jan, the temple in Babu Mohalla is nearly 200 years old and was sculpted from a mountain.
Hindus had inhabited the area for centuries, but most of them migrated to India in 1947.