SC proposes appointment of architect to restore Karak temple

Published August 26, 2015
CJ asks Dr Vankwani, KP Home Secretary and Karak DC to sit together and come up with a plan to rebuild the Samadhi.—AFP/File
CJ asks Dr Vankwani, KP Home Secretary and Karak DC to sit together and come up with a plan to rebuild the Samadhi.—AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court proposed on Tuesday that a renowned architect be employed to rebuild a Hindu temple in Karak district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as had been done in case of a temple in Shahalmi Market of Lahore a few years ago.

A three-judge Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja asked the PML-N MNA from Tharparkar, Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, KP Home Secretary Arbab Mohammad Arif and Karak Deputy Commissioner (DC) Shoaib Jadoon to sit together and come up with a plan to rebuild the Shri Paramhans Ji Maharaj’s Samadhi in Teri village of Karak.

Take a look: Footprints: A saint without a shrine

The chief justice said that the order must not be defied and should be implemented at all cost. Mr Jadoon assured the court that its earlier order about restoration of the temple had been carried out and a boundary wall had been built around it.

The DC submitted photographs to substantiate his claim.

“We have also given a right of way to reach the Samadhi through the house of Maulvi Iftikharuddin who was earlier in possession of the temple,” the DC explained.

But the court declared that the efforts put in by the provincial administration were not enough and proposed construction of a new building instead of just erecting boundary walls.

The surrounding walls will spoil the area, observed the chief justice, recalling how a temple in Shahalmi Market, Lahore, was reconstructed by architect Kamil Khan, who had a clear understanding of architectural heritage and had provided free consultancy to rebuild the temple.

The chief justice said the court could ask the architect to conserve the Karak temple. The next hearing has been scheduled for Sept 7.

When Justice Dost Mohammad Khan inquired about the cost of the reconstruction work, the DC replied that the cost was estimated at around Rs550,000 but the provincial government had earmarked Rs2 million under the annual development plan.

Mufti Iftikharuddin who appeared before the court submitted an application with a request to make him a party in the case since he was the lawful owner of the property. The house in which he resides belongs to the Evacuee Property Trust but was occupied by his father, late Mufti Chiragh Din in 1950.

On April 16, the apex court had ordered the KP government to restore and rebuild the temple, whose preservation has led to a rift between the minority community and local religious leaders.

The shrine and temple were built at the place where a Hindu notable, Shri Paramhans, died in 1919 and was buried. His followers visited the temple frequently till 1997 to pay respects but some fanatics dismantled the temple.

Followers of Shri Paramhans tried to rebuild the temple but the land was allegedly under occupation of a local mufti, Iftikharuddin.

Published in Dawn, August 26th, 2015

On a mobile phone? Get the Dawn Mobile App: Apple Store | Google Play

Opinion

Shared city
26 Jan 2021

Shared city

Karachi is not a city ‘created by everybody’.
Back to governance
Updated 25 Jan 2021

Back to governance

While PDM has continued efforts to mount political pressure, it has been unable to force a crisis to challenge the PTI government.

Editorial

Pakistan-US ties
Updated 26 Jan 2021

Pakistan-US ties

The US remains the world’s most powerful country, one Pakistan cannot afford to ignore.
26 Jan 2021

NAB not impartial

NAB CHAIRMAN retired justice Javed Iqbal has claimed that his organisation is an unbiased anti white-collar-crime...
26 Jan 2021

Pakistan-South Africa series

IN what is seen as a rare instance, Pakistan start as the underdogs on their home turf when they take on South ...
Updated 25 Jan 2021

Where the buck stops

The rights to due process and security of person are accorded to every individual in this country.
25 Jan 2021

PPP’s plan?

THE PDM faces a fresh crisis as the PPP takes a conspicuously soft position on the long march. While the PDM talks ...
25 Jan 2021

Forward guidance

THE State Bank has taken the unusual step of issuing a forward guidance in its latest monetary policy statement to...