Temple renovated, formally handed over to Hindu community in Sialkot

Temple renovated, formally handed over to Hindu community in Sialkot

LAHORE: The Pakistan government has renovated and formally handed over the centuries-old Shawala Teja Singh Temple in Sialkot to the Pakistan Hindu Council for facilitating pilgrim visits and other rituals.

“The Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) Chairman Dr Amir Ahmed inaugurated the renovated temple on Friday last in a ceremony and handed over its control to the Pakistan Hindu Council,” ETPB spokesperson Amir Hashmi told PTI on Sunday.

Hashmi said members of the Hindus community performed rituals, worshipped the presiding deity and distributed sweets to celebrate Diwali. He said the temple has been restored according to its original design. “The entire building has been whitewashed and the main entrance has been fixed. The boundary walls have also been constructed to secure the temple,” he said.

In July, Pakistan had opened the temple in Sialkot, some 100 kms from Lahore, for the public. The temple was partially damaged during attacks on it in 1992, which were in response to the demolition of the Babari Masjid in India.

The temple, located in the city’s congested Dhaarowal locality, is more than 1,000 years old, according to the book ‘History of Sialkot’ by late historian Rashid Niaz. Around 2,000 Hindus reside in the locality. PTI

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