Hindus being denied access to temple, SC questions authorities

Published: February 26, 2014
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The Hindu community wants the National Performing Arts Academy to give up the Hindu Gymkhana building, saying it belongs to them. PHOTO: FILE

The Hindu community wants the National Performing Arts Academy to give up the Hindu Gymkhana building, saying it belongs to them. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: 

The Supreme Court called on Tuesday for a report on the efforts being made by the government to ensure access of the Hindu community to a century-old temple in Tando Adam.

A larger bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, also directed the additional advocate general to look into the locking of the temple. The apex court was hearing applications against the alleged denial of access to the members of the religious minority to the temple – Amrapur Asthan of Prem Prakash Panth – during the suo motu proceedings on the attack on the All Saints Church in Peshawar.

“The Constitution guarantees the rights of religious minorities in the country,” observed the Justice Jillani. “And the SC will ensure that these rights are [fully] enforced.”

Applicant Reejho Mal had sent an application alleging that Hindus are being denied entry to their revered place of worship by the management of a government school that has been set up on the premises. The site  spread over seven acres houses a historic temple and the final resting place of Swami Teenu Ram Maharaj. Mal said that the samadhi and the temple are important religious places. “Because of the law and order situation in the late 1950s, most Hindu families fled,” he said. “After the decrease in Hindu population, the provincial government allotted a portion of the land to the education department, which established Dr Ziauddin Primary School there.”

Father Joseph Coutts, appeared with Advocate Nadeem Sheikh as a representative of the Christian community, and requested the apex court to constitute a commission to attend to the grievances. However, the three judges declined the plea. The bench assured that the court would establish the writ of the law and their enforcement. However, the judges felt that it was duty of the government to make such legislations.

However, the bench was informed that the school management l lock up the premises in the evening due to which the Hindus cannot offer their night prayers.

Taking notice of this, the bench instructed additional advocate general Adnan Karim to look into the matter. The hearing was adjourned till Wednesday (today).

Hindu council wants their Gymkhana to be theirs

The patron of the Pakistan Hindu Council, Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, requested the Supreme Court to sanction the Hindu Gymkhana building to be used exclusively for Hindus.

Vankwani filed a concise statement informing that the Hindu community had built the Hindu Gymkhana in Karachi in 1926 for recreational purposes. He said that the building was illegally declared as evacuee property and taken over by several institutions. Eventually, in 2007, it found its way into the hands of the National Academy of Performing Arts.

He alleged that the state, which is bound by Articles 14, 20, 24, 25 and 33 of the constitution to hand over the building to the Hindu community, has been nothing more than a silent spectator.

“The Hindu community has been left without a place dedicated exclusively for their activities, which is in violation of Article 14,” he added, maintaining that this amounts to discrimination against them and is in violation of Article 25 of the Constitution.

Vankhwani felt that since the Hindus have no other place in the urban center to be able to celebrate their festivities – which violates Article 28 of the Constitution – their vibrant culture is threatened by ‘extinction’.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 26th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (5)

  • anti terrorist
    Feb 26, 2014 - 7:57AM

    this is what pakistan. India should allow every Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists to enter India, and all those paki supporters to pakistan. i don’t think our vote bank greedy politicians ever do that.

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  • Raj - USA
    Feb 26, 2014 - 8:36AM

    Stupid Hindus of Pakistan !!!!! Still wishing that they have a place of worship in Pakistan. Everyone knows that Jinna’s wishes have come true at least partially i.e., “Hindus shall cease to be Hindus”. Soon, the remaining small population of Hindu girls will be converted to Islam and their male and and older female will be cremated. All these Hindu girls will become the wife of some Muslim man. By the way, has anyone heard of any Hindu girl converted to Islam becoming a sister, daughter or mother of a muslim at any time in the history of Pakistan? They all become a wife of a muslim, however old he may be and irrespective of the number of the wives he already may have. If anyone thinks or feels this to be not true, please comment. Stupid Christians also !!!! Often when someone converts to Christianity, they become a Saint or Nun and are respectfully referred as Father, Sister or Mother.

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  • Bilal
    Feb 26, 2014 - 8:49AM

    Good luck getting it back!

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  • Knulla
    Feb 26, 2014 - 9:44AM

    This story cannot be true because Pakistani Muslims treats minorities with dignity and respect, unlike India where Hajj trips are paid for by the taxpayer.

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  • Feb 26, 2014 - 10:03AM

    All Hindus in Pakistan should be allowed to migrate to India if they wish
    All Muslims in India who are not happy should be allowed to migrate to Pakistan.
    Both Parties should be allowed to take their savings as well.
    Land of the pure is for the followers of Islam
    This will be the only solution

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