Pakistani police arrested 10 other people in overnight raids for allegedly involved in the destruction of a Hindu temple by a mob led by members of a radical party in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
With the recent arrests, the number of defendants arrested in the case has increased to 55. Over 350 people were named in the FIR after the temple in Terri village in the Karak district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was destroyed and set on fire by a protesting mob on Wednesday against its expansion work.
It is sought to arrest the other defendants named in the FIR.
The temple, which also housed a samadhi from a Hindu religious leader, was attacked by the crowd after members of the Hindu community received permission from local authorities to renovate its decade-old building.
The mob, led by some local clergy and supporters of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam party (Fazal ur Rehman group), destroyed the newly built plant next to the old structure.
The attack on the temple was strongly condemned by human rights activists and the leaders of the Hindu minority.
India has also protested against the destruction of the temple in Pakistan and taken tough measures against those responsible for the incident.
The protest was relayed to Pakistan through diplomatic channels, sources in New Delhi said Friday.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Prime Minister Mahmood Khan has assured that his government will rebuild the damaged temple and the samadhi in the shortest possible time.
Chief Minister Khan’s special assistant for information, Kamran Bangash, said religious tolerance would be maintained in the province.
The Pakistani Supreme Court has ordered local authorities to appear before the court on January 5th.
The court ordered the one-man commission on minority rights, the KP chief secretary and the KP police inspector general to visit the website and to submit a report on January 4th.
Hindus form the largest minority community in Pakistan.
According to official estimates, there are 75 lakh Hindus in Pakistan. However, according to the community, over 90 lakh Hindus live in the countryside.
The majority of Pakistan’s Hindu population lives in Sindh Province, where they share culture, traditions, and language with Muslim residents. They often complain of harassment from the extremists.
Meanwhile, the Pakistani Foreign Ministry called India’s protest against the destruction of the Hindu temple “totally unjustified” on Saturday.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and posted from a syndicated feed.)