Pakistan’s long forgotten Hindu temples and Gurdwaras

Published: January 29, 2013

In Gurdwara Bagh Sardaraan. PHOTO: SHIRAZ HASSAN

The partition of India was based on the premise that a Bengali Muslim would be able to identify with the sorrows and issues of a Punjabi Muslim more than a Bengali Hindu.

Of course, that was a vicious and diabolic notion because I believe that culture and heritage stand above religion.

I recently visited the dilapidated temples and gurdwaras of Rawalpindi and realised that the city still sings of her secular past.

The entrance to a temple in Gunjmandi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

In the early 19th century, the British made Rawalpindi the central seat of military power as they aimed towards Afghanistan. This was in line with their strategic approach towards the Russian Empire in order to enjoy and retain complete control over central Asia.

Known as the Great Game, the conflict continues today in another form.

Details in a temple in Ganjmandi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

After the partition in 1947, Rawalpindi continued to be the general headquarters of the army. But Pindi has a lot more to tell than just it’s military tales. The city is known for its heritage and culture. Its multi-religious character changed when almost all of its Hindu and Sikh inhabitants left for India. Sixty five years after partition, I went looking for their temples and Gurudwaras.

Ambardaran mandir, Bohar Bazaar. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

Walking around the old city, in areas like Krishanpura, Akaal Garh, Mohanpura, Amarpura, Kartarpura, Bagh Sardaraan, Angatpura, you can see Pindi’s heritage.

There are about ten dilapidated temples and Gurdwaras which are no longer functional. One temple located at Kohati Bazaar is in good condition. Its premises are used as a government school for disabled children.

Another beautiful Gurdwara known as Bagh Sardaraan is used by the Punjab Police as their main office.

A temple in Chungi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

The temple located at Government Asghar Mall College is used as a scrap yard. A Shiva temple at Gunjmandi now houses storerooms or shops. There are a few more abandoned temples scattered around College Road, Bohar Bazaar, Purana Qilla, Bagh Sardaraan and then some on the outskirts of Rawalpindi which are about to collapse, or so it seems!

Takhpari mandir. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

In the old area of Lunda Bazaar, there used to be three temples, a Gurdwara, a Khalsa School and many Havelis belonging to the Hindus and Sikhs of the time. Of the three temples, two have survived. The third, of goddess Kali in the main bazaar, no longer exists. It has been converted into living quarters and extensions have been made, thus changing the original structure entirely.

In Lunda bazaar, there is a tall structure of a temple known as Mohan Mandir. This temple is believed to have been built by two Hindu Hakims in 1930, Hakim Asa Anand and Hakim Moti Ram.

Mohan mandir at Lunda Bazaar. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

It is sad that even though there are so many abandoned temples in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, there is not a single place for the Hindus living in the twin cities to celebrate their festivals like diwali, shivratri or holi.

There are more than 25,000 Hindus living in Rawalpindi and Islamabad. Some of them have migrated from other parts of Pakistan, mainly from Sindh.

A temple near Rawal dam in Islamabad. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Ganjmandi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Ganjmandi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
Details of a temple in Sagri village, Rawalpindi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Purana Qilla, Rawalpindi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
Twin temples in Sagri village, Rawalpindi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Bagh Sardaraan. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

 

 

A detailed picture in Mohan mandir, Lunda Bazaar. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Ganjmandi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
A temple near Rawal dam in Islamabad. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Sagri village, Rawalpindi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Purana Qilla area. Photo: Shiraz Hassan
In Chungi. Photo: Shiraz Hassan

Recently, following a request from Ramesh Lal, a Hindu parliamentarian of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party, Prime Minister Raja Pervez issued a directive to the chairman of the Capital Development Authority to build a new temple for the Hindu community.

That is undoubtedly a good gesture, however, the government must also urgently restore and preserve the old heritage of the city- if not for the sake of the minorities still prevalent in our country then at least for the sake of history and heritage.

PHOTOS: SHIRAZ HASSAN

This post originally appeared here

Read more by Shiraz here or follow him on Twitter @ShirazHassan  

shiraz.hassan

Shiraz Hassan

A Rawalpindi based journalist, blogger and photographer who tweets @ShirazHassan

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Fatima

    wow good research, please also take me to a visit of these templesRecommend

  • Mehmood Ahmad Babar

    A great work Shiraz Sir. Keep it up and carry On… Recommend

  • Nandita.
  • ram

    very nice !great effort tp highlight ancient culture & heritage of south asia. Recommend

  • sarah

    Wao this just beautifulRecommend

  • Avatar Janjua

    dil khush kita aeRecommend

  • free bird

    believe me, if you restore these places by investing 100 crores rupees one time, you can get returns at least 1000 crores rupees every year… but for that you need fundamental change in your attitude Recommend

  • http://Islamabad Jinnah

    Atleast these mandir’s are not intentionally vanished like Babri Mosque.Recommend

  • BlackJack

    Thank you – excellent piece and the pictures show that this wasn’t just a google search article.Recommend

  • Zeeshan

    “Of course, that was a vicious and diabolic notion because I believe that culture and heritage stand above religion.”

    That’s a false myth. Religion stood above “culture and heritage” in 1947 when Punjab and Bengal were divided. After all, your culture comes from your religion. So is theirs. Why do you think you’ve never visited temples and gurdwaras? Your name is not Ranjit Singh or Rahul Khanna either so what makes you say the above silly statement.

    Next time, take a trip to Punjab in India and wonder what happened to our mosques there. Millions of Muslims left East Punjab to come to Pakistan. Surely, there are mosques left behind there or have they all been destroyed, stolen and converted into gurdwaras?.

    what happened to mosques in Punjab in India? And, those who are supposed to share the same “culture and heritage as yours” do not even allow mosques to be built there. Sure, “culture and heritage” do not stand above religion. Recommend

  • Dr. Dang

    @Jinnah:
    mandirs are in place but your people have vanished ..Recommend

  • hemakumar

    Excellent Shiraz Bhai for the article….Recommend

  • kaalchakra

    What greater proof does one need that there is more religious freedom and tolerance in Pakistan than in India where the Babri Masjid was destroyed and even Shahrukh Khan and Shabana Azmi cannot feel equal to an ordinary Hindu?Recommend

  • stuti

    @Dr. Dang:
    Very well said. People have been made to vanish.Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/britishmuslims Mohammed Abbasi

    Excellent article, indeed there is richness and diversity in this land that needs to promoted at least for tourism that can help Pakistans image in the world and develop the self-confidence of the people in themselvesRecommend

  • Deb; India

    @Jinnah

    Atleast these mandir’s are not intentionally vanished like Babri Mosque.

    65 years. One Mosque structure (no prayer offered for 150 odd years). Thats all you have to show against turning Temples into police stations, godowns, offices etc. Have some sense of proportion.
    Babri Masjid was an aberration. Still it was a despicable act of bigotry. I will say that every time and will appologise to every one. Recommend

  • Raj – USA

    @Jinnah:
    These temples have not been demolished, though they remain in ruins only because these are not Ahmedi grave yards or or Shia / Ahmedi mosques. Also, there are no government schools in the area teaching students from grade 6 to grade 9. “Somnath Ki Fateh” taught in class 9 is a wonderful chapter, Isn’t it?Recommend

  • stranger

    Mashallah . this article should be a part of curriculam in universities. Such a vast plethora of knowledge accompanied with pictures. Made a lusty reading and viewing.Recommend

  • Pawroti

    @kaalchakra:

    How do you know about Shahrukh Khan and Shabana Azmi’s status? Did you personally have a conversation with them?

    Last time I checked they were both Billionaires at least.

    With the kind of status that they enjoy your claim seemingly sounds ridiculous and unreasonable.Recommend

  • brooder

    Let us refrain from your side of divide this and ours this ..and not forget,,,despite the holocaust of 1947 , we have a fairly large Muslim population and one Babri destruction by bigots,cannot take away the work of our founding fathers in ensuring protection of minorities.And yes ,very importantly Mr.Jinnah founded Pakistan as a secular nation …please ponder …all Hindus and Sikhs of Rawalpindi were purged or exterminated and what are now living Hindus are largely from Sindh province …is Pakistan really secular ? all this fundamentalism that is taking hold in this region is largely the result of oneness being sought by those living and no one to stand up to these bigots.Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    Let the Pakistan Govt. repair and restore the beautiful hindu temples, and let the people of the vicinity are show respect for the places where people of the land of a different faith got together and offered their prayers. This should also set the process of healing among different sections of muslims who live in the vicinity as well.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/highraja Raja Ammar Siddiqui

    We made a documentary on the state of temples in Kotli Azad Kashmir. We have four temples here which are not in a very good state. Please see http://www.facebook.com/PreserveKashmir
    We are campaigning to save these monuments for future generations, please support us. I would request Et team to support us by given our link here. Thanks very much.Recommend

  • raags

    I see lot of Pakistanis feeling very happy about this article and pointing finger towards India. These are only the temples or monuments that are remaining. Do research for the one that are already destroyed. Babri Masjid is an unfortunate incident. Don’t comfort your self by comparing 1000 issues in Pakistan with 4 or 5 incidents in India. Recommend

  • Manju

    The Temples are in shambles. But atleast they are there is the consolation… Recommend

  • Diggvijay Singh

    Reading many of the comments by Pakistanis, as an Indian Hindu, I feel majority of Pakistanis have only positive sentiments for the historical Hindu sites. They want to preserve these places and want the minorities to be safe and well. Would really like the Pakistani government to start some projects for restoration and maintenance of these assets. Recommend

  • Parvez

    What I see in these pictures is clear neglect and disrespect on our part for others religion and culture.Recommend

  • shailesh patel

    @Jinnah:
    babri structure was not a mosqueRecommend

  • Bombaywallah

    People like the writer gives glint of hope for we Indians, that there are civilized persons in Pakistan who value the past heritage and dont denigrate the heritage from the narrow perspective. Today’s Pakistan is based on some ideology..same place had different ideology 1000′s of years back..nothing is permanent..hence just because Temples, Gurudwaras dont fit into some people’s ideology doesn’t mean..destroy it.History can be traced through british, before christ era…even to Mohenjadaro..!! We are denying our future generations the history lessons to learn from, if some “mad cap” keeps demolishing such rich heritage. cheers !! there is some hope!!Recommend

  • http://www.kabacreations.com Vishnu Dutta

    If today you ask any pakistani, who are better muslims? the current citizens are the citizens of same land 200 years ago. Most of them will say that people from past were better muslims. Little would they realize that the better muslims were more open to other religions and tolerated their religious places. So if you want to be a good muslims then please tolerate other religions.

    Great research and writeup, kinda gives you a sad feeling about the conditions of homes of gods. but people like you will never let them die.Recommend

  • Singh

    @Zeeshan
    Come to Indian Punjab buddy…you will see so many mosques that you may not find those many in Lahore….we have whole cities like Malerkotla, Punjab dominated by Muslims alone and almost none of Muslim brothers left for Pakistan during partition…Little knowledge is a dangerous thing…look before you misguide people of your society..No offence :) Recommend

  • Shu

    Brilliant Article. Yes there are still many temples not only in Rawalpindi but in other cities and villages. Well most of these temples have been very mistreated and nobody seems to consider them of any heritage and historical value.Recommend

  • http://usa Babloo

    There are 300% more functional mosques today in India , than they were in 1947. The muslim community itself is 3 times the number in 1947 and a greater percentage of the population.

    Just the opposite is the case in Pakistan.
    Thanks to ET for highlighting the total plight and decay of Hindu/Sikh heritage in Pakistan, a land where they were once an absolute majority.Recommend

  • socko

    @Jinnah
    FYI Do you know which country in the world has the most number of mosques?
    A: India. Recommend

  • gp65

    Author : Great job. Very interesting pictures.
    @kaalchakra: “What greater proof does one need that there is more religious freedom and tolerance in Pakistan than in India where the Babri Masjid was destroyed”

    In this very same article, the author says that Hindu temples have been converted into offices and schools and that the 25,000 Hindus of Rawalpindi have no temple to go to. Show me a city which has even a thousand Muslims in India where there is not a functioning mosque.

    Quoting the solitary episode of Babri masjid is pointless. The reason people still talk about it is because it is the Indian press and politicians and media made a big deal about it. Just last month an Indian temple was razed to ground in Pakistan despite court stay orders and no one even talks about it. Several churches were also destroyed in the last couple of months in Pakistan yet no one talks about them. In Pakistan no one cares and hence it becomes a non issue after a 24 hour news cycle.

    In fact as @Dang said the population of Hindus and Sikhs which was 20% in present day Pakistan in 1947 has been driven down to less than 2% now. Discrimination against non-Muslims is embedded in your constitution , so the notion that somehow these temples represent religious freedom and tolerance is laughable.

    ” and even Shahrukh Khan and Shabana Azmi cannot feel equal to an ordinary Hindu?”
    People in Pakistan quote Shabana Azmi completely out of context. Are you aware that both she and her husband Javed Akhtar were nominated to Rajya Sabha (which is equivalent to your senate)? Throughout their careers Shabana and Javed (as also Shah Rukh Khan) were hired by Hindu producers and whose movies were watched by a largely Hindu population who made them stars. Javed Akhtar is on record in an interview with Wajahat Khan in Dawn News that Indian Muslims have more religious freedom than Muslims anywhere else including Pakistan. HE substantiates saying that Shias, Sunnis, Ahmadis can ALL pray freely in India and in no other Muslims country can they do so. When Pakistanis like Imran Khan are delayed and detained by US immigration there are no consequences but when Shah Rukh Khan was detained by US, Indian government sought and obtained an apology.Recommend

  • Sachin

    My friend you all seems to be talking about babe masjid which was controversial because of history come and visit India we have not got one or two mosque in India there are over million mosque and none of them look they way temples and gurudwara are in Pakistan and mind you people like shrukh khan are only playing there Muslim card he is been very well looked after if anything he is there because of our democratic system and tolerance towards other religion , It’s a known fact you guys are most fanatic people in world and judge everything without knowing the facts . I will show you million of mosque in India show me one functional temple in PakistanRecommend

  • XYZ

    @Zeeshan:

    Sir

    Perhaps you never been to Indian Punjab. There are a lot of masjids (old/new). Recommend

  • http://peddarowdy.wordpress.com Anoop

    In India there are Buddhist remains, which are recognised as Historical sites and protected. There’s a lot of tourist traffic to these places, even among the locals. The marked difference is because Indians are proud of their Buddhist heritage. Once most of India was Buddhist.

    The Temples and Gudurwaras rot in Pakistan because Pakistanis, unlike Indians, are not proud of their History, the fact that their ancestors followed a pagan culture.

    Its not surprising. From 20% to 2% Hindu/Sikh population in just 6 decades.

    It seems that there are more Temples and Gurudwaras than the number of people in some areas. Relics of a glorious past.Recommend

  • observer

    @Zeeshan:

    what happened to mosques in Punjab in India?

    Good question. Here is the answer.
    What is your next question?

    http://www.milligazette.com/news/5249-desolate-mosque-restored-by-hindus-sikhs

    http://www.outlookindia.com/article.aspx?265962Recommend

  • gp65

    @kaalchakra: A little rebuttal for your (and Hafiz Saeed’s concern in Shah Rukh’s own words. “”We have an amazing democratic, free and secular way of life. In the environment that we live here in my country India, we have no safety issues regarding life and material. As a matter-of-fact, it is irksome for me to clarify this non-existent issue”. Shah Rukh said.
    Elsewhere he said “”It (article) does not even vaguely say that I am ungrateful for the love I have received in a career spanning 20 years. On the contrary, the article says that in spite of the bigoted thoughts of some of the people that surround us, I am untouched by sceptics because of the love I have received from my countrymen and women,” he said.
    Read the whole article here
    http://www.indianexpress.com/news/have-no-safety-issues-in-india-shah-rukh-khan/1066405/2Recommend

  • Hassan

    Why not mentioned Gurdawara Panja Sahib in HassanAbdal, Rawalpindi, Gurduwara Janam Asthan, Nankana Shib and Gurudarwa Dera Sahib with Samadhi of Ranjit Singh just adjacent to Badshahi Mosque Lahore where every year 8,000-10,000 Sikh Pilgrims visit form all over the world at two Main occasions Beshakhi and Birthday of Baba GuruNanak and Sikhs also visits Pakistan all over the year very safely.Recommend

  • krbhatti

    @kaalchakra: Ha ha ha. Kaal bhra, you’ll not change. With all your chankiyagiri, you never miss a chance to make a point in ‘meesn’ way…. Come out of it man! you are too smart to waste your intelligence on hate.. Recommend

  • jagjit sidhoo
  • Milind

    @kaalchakra
    Shahrukh Khan and Shabana Azmi may talked about being discriminated against in India, once in a while. What they forgot to state was that this was brought upon them by their co-religionists with the same mentality as yours. They will continue to face this “discrimination” everywhere in the world -be it NY airport, Thailand, Singapore and even on Beijing airports. So start with fixing yourself and gradually everything will fall in its place and fade awayRecommend

  • http://www.asifnwz.wordpress.com Asif Nawaz

    A great piece!Recommend

  • http://nil SOOMAR

    The following is the extract from Sheikh Ayaz ( The great Sindhi poet) poetry regarding a friend who migrated from Sindh to India after Partition of 1947. In reply The Narayan Shyam wrote that Please donot kill a Sharnarthi (refugee) in Sindh because I am Refugee here in India.

    ORIGINAL IN Roman Sindhi
    sangram!
    samhoon Aa
    Narayan Shayam!
    hina ja munhinja
    Qola bi saGya
    Boola bi saGya
    hoo kavita jo kaaka-dharni, para
    munhinja ranga-ratola bi saGya
    DHatu bi saGyo
    DHolu bi saGyo
    hanou bi saGyo
    hola bi saGya
    huna tay keean bandooka KhaRNa maan!
    hina Khay golee keean haRNa maan!
    keean haRNa maan
    keean haRNa maan!
    keean haRNa maan! Translation:
    This sangram!
    in front is
    Narain Shayam!
    His and my
    tales are the same
    promises are the same
    He is the king of poetry, but
    my colorful ways are also the same
    land also the same
    beloved also the same
    heart also the same
    horrors also the same
    How can I point a gun at him!
    How can I shoot him!
    How can I shoot!
    How can I shoot!
    How can I shoot!Recommend

  • Muhammad Shafiq

    @kaalchakra:
    Why do you compete urself to India. If You have to go ahead then you have to give equality on the basis of Humanity and as a citizen even he is Hindu, Sikh, Shia or Ahmadi.Recommend

  • jagjit sidhoo

    @Asif Nawaz :Beautiful Recommend

  • Nataraj-chennai

    @kaalchakra:

    We hindus by nature respect other’s beliefs !!! there are more than 7 billion people living in this world ! if god wished he/she could have made everbody of same faith !!! it is not so!
    Eskimos have their wisodm ! if I impose my wisdom then iam not a civilised man !!!

    rise beyond religion !!! pakistan is being shattered frequently because obsession with faith !!Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    I am not from Pakistan but would support the efforts of those who would undertake to restore and renovate ancient temples buildings as part of the cultural heritage. What the Indians have done in their land to mosques, this is their business and reflects on their cultural upbringing.
    A civilisation is not born but nurtured over thousands years of history. Too much was lost during the the two centuries of occupation in your land but what is remaining needs restoration as part of heritage and without favouring one or other people.

    Most shameful I find about Indians is their hate towards women and especialy in the city where the Mongol monarch constructed one of the world wonders to demonstrtate his love for the Queen.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Nataraj-chennai

    Read Chasing a Mirage – “a tragic illusion of an Islamic state” by Tarek Fatah

    I write as a Muslim whose ancestors were Hindu. My religion, Islam, is rooted in Judaism, while my Punjabi culture is tied to that of the Sikhs. Yet I am told by Islamists that without shedding this multifaceted heritage, if not outrightly rejecting it, I cannot be considered a true Muslim.

    Tarek Fatah

    Muslims living as religious minorities in secular societies—be it in South Africa, India, Canada, the United States, or Britain— are able to speak their minds, live under the rule of law, and get equality of
    citizenship. On the other hand, Muslims cannot even dare to imagine suchrights in present-day Islamic States.
    Tarek FatahRecommend

  • AD

    You won’t find even a single mosque in India in such a bad state.Recommend

  • BlackJack

    @SOOMAR:

    Very interesting – thank you.Recommend

  • @jinnah

    what about rama pir mandir ? what about peshawar temple ? what about 100+ temples destroyed by pakistanis and 1000+ changed into offices and animalsheds?Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    Kaal,

    Shahrukh Khan should be greatful to the country which has made him rich, and not squak ike the blacks in the western countries. There is a discrimination all over the world and in all cultures, but they are ethnic or religion related. when a republican congressmen accuses Obama of laziness, the blacks spokesman Collin Powel calls it racist and remembers the slavery days.

    SKhan should choose his words with care and show a bit of loyalty an tolerence to the country which provides him bread and butter.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • BigotNot

    These temples of ancestors of today’s Pakistanis don’t really have a place in the Islamic republic of Pakistan. Conversion doesn’t stop with change of religion but loss of one owns culture and adoption of another’s culture as our own. It’s like a glass has been emptied and refilled and the glass has no memory of what it carried earlier.Recommend

  • Sonia Wahab

    This article is a brilliant slap on bigotry of Paskistani Muslims. Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Nataraj-chennai:

    Islam is not rooted in judaism! The jews refused to accept Jesus(pbuh) a Prophet of God, and the christians later upgraded his status from prophet to son of God. Mohammad(pbuh) the last Prophet of God brought reforms in the Ibrahimic faith of all three religions.

    A muslim is no more than a person who promises to adhere to the prescribed tenets of Islam and live the life which reflects the values of Islam. This does not mean that he is automaticaly a muslim, only with deeds will he be judged by the al mighty God.I do not know who are the so called Islamists you are referring to?

    Rex Minor

    ps
    sikhs are strange, they were butchered by Indira sikh military, claim to believe in one God but share hindu culture and traditions, said an American Sikh on CNN.Recommend

  • migflatsdomlur

    By taking and displaying these pictures, you have exposed these temples to all the bigoted people. I would bet my left hand that in 10 yrs, all of these temples/gurudwaras would be just a pile of bricks.Recommend

  • Prany

    @brooder:

    When did Pakistanis say that they were secular. Even Jinnah only said it but did not mean it. Whatever little thought about secularism he had was buried with him. The entire history of Pakistan is a testimonial to it. They have not even spared the only Nobel Prize winner born in that country because he was Ahmadi. Recommend

  • kaalchakra

    So here we go again. Instead of appreciating the fact that Pakistanis have preserved these structures even though, let’s be honest, these hold not the slightest value to a vast majority, Hindus have taken to displaying their usual religious bigotry – throwing mud everytime a hand of friendship is offered to them. And for God’s sake, let’s not regurgitate the usual cliche about the ancestors of Pakistanis being ‘Hindus’. That was never the case. Local people were buddhists, never Hindus. Even those, most at least, are not the same people as those of today. Pakistanis are descendents of Iranians, Turks, Arabs, and other Central Asians. They have no relation to Hinduism. Even if they did, that would be an irrelevant detail because in the great ocean of Islam, it makes not the slightest difference what unfortunate circumstances he or she suffered from prior to receiving the blessing and the light of Islam. If some Hindus really like these temples they can come and buy off the bricks at right price.Recommend

  • goose

    @Jinnah:
    There was never any ‘Babri Mosque’ – merely a derelict structure which had been laid to ruin by the Muslim community themselves and which was built by razing a temple on the most sacred land for the Hindus. But as is typical of the hardline attitude of Muslims in India (all over the subcontinent really), once the Hindus wanted to reclaim their sacred land for their temple which had been destroyed by Muslims, the Muslims in India started claiming it was a mosque and since once a mosque, the land will always be a mosque (wonder what Muslims have t say if we apply similar logic to religious structures of other religions?) you have the whole issue of the so called ‘Babri Mosque’ where even no Muslim prayer had been offered for 150+ years right before the controversy erupted.Recommend

  • goose

    @kaalchakra:
    As an Indian I agree – so I believe Shahrukh should take up Hafiz Sayeed’s offer and move to Pakistan where as you say, there is greater tolerance. This ungrateful ^&%^& anyway doesn’t deserve what he has got so far in India as proved by his thoughts. I doubt Sayeed would extend the same offer to Shabana Ajmi though, even though she is rabidly anti- Hindu – because after all she is a Muslim woman film star and I doubt Sayeed could stomach that.Recommend

  • goose

    @raags:
    They forgot to mention the number of temples razed by bulldozers after the Babri structure incident. I also wonder, would any Muslim stand it if the structures at Mecca were razed and the temples of another religion erected there? As that is exactly what happened t the Ram Janmabhoomi were the most sacred Hindu temple was razed and a mosque built centuries ago – a structure that was abandoned for 150+ years and yet the Muslims wouldn’t agree to give it back to the Hindus when they wanted to rebuild the original temple.Recommend

  • goose

    @Singh:
    Let’s not get into appeasement mode – they didn’t display any brotherhood in 1947 – burnt our relatives alive and started living in the same captured houses they considered ‘impure’. Why should any Indian have to explain our position to them – they are the ones who have to do the explaining about what they did to the Hindu and Sikh population of West Punjab and to their properties and religious structures.Recommend

  • goose

    @Milind:
    Some people like Shahrukh and Shabana will complain if they can – I wonder if a Hindu in their position would even be able to complain in a country such as Pakistan or even the rich Gulf states for that matter or would they need to pander to their Muslim rulers for their position and safety – I think that is most likely. If Shahrukh isn’t safe, who is safe in India? My kids who are Hindus and travel by bus to school everyday in Delhi aren’t even 5% as safe as Shahrukh and his extremely privileged family are. What a shame that all he has to say about India is negative – shame on him and all those who support him and may God give him and others their just deserts. Recommend

  • vexed

    Rex Minor,
    For your information, Indians and Pakistanis were ONE CULTURE till 60 years ago.
    The vacuum that everyone is aware of in defining the modern-pakistani identity is a direct result of the post-independence alienation. And what is happening to women in India is not radically different from the tratment meted out to them in Pakistani society.
    This article is about the beautiful-remains of a lost culture. Please dont bring your trashy baggage here and ruin the mahoul. Recommend

  • gp65

    @goose: “Shabana Ajmi though, even though she is rabidly anti- Hindu”

    Shabana and Javed are patriotic Indians. Shabana is not rabidly anti-Hindu. In fact I challenge you to come up with one anti-Hindu statement (if she has made a statement against a person who happens to be Hindu, that does not qualify). You should actually listen to the interview with Karan Thapar where she made the statement related to the flat which is flogged endlessly as lack of patriotism on her part. It was on repeated prodding by Thapar. BEfore and after that, she said that Muslims in India had a stake in the system which was provided by secular and democratic India.Recommend

  • KHAMOSH INSAAN

    Beautiful photographs.
    God has made man, but man has made religion.
    God resides in a man’s heart, mandir,masjid and church are where we think HE resides.
    Please keep up the good work.Recommend

  • Cynical

    @KHAMOSH INSAAN

    Nice thought. Apko khamosh nahin rehna chahiye.Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @vexed:
    You said one culture? Do not raise vexed questions. This is not what Mr Jinnah said! One heritage, yes but different cultures. Hindus have remained in the limbo status of ancient times of mythologies of the primitive world. You should thank the sons of Mongols who did not eliminate you as our ancestors did with the pagans in Europe, Africa and Americas.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Haresh

    Pardon my ignorance but I wonder why a Muslim from Pakistan would ever want to search for Hindu or Sikh temples. Of what use is this to them? I write this without any prejudice, but I just genuinely wonder……..Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Haresh:
    The answer is very simple! People who have interest in civilisations and history folow this rai all over the world. Why should I look for ancient buildings ad monuments and excavation sights in the german speaking countries? And why should I look for graves of celtics in France? There are people who do it because archeology and interest in architect and ancient humans is their professional line. An if you would have smilar interests then you will discover that until lately unknown tribe in the amazon delta worship is no different than that which the hindus have been following since ancient times in India. The only exception being the temples which the amazonians do not have.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Sane

    @stuti:

    @Dr. Dang:
    Very well said. People have been made to vanish.

    There must to an end to old, over-used and over-said rhetoric. Pakistan is much much safer than India for minorities. Nobody must attempt to deny this fact in the light of confessions made by Foreign & Interior ministers of India that there are terrorist training camps in India run by Hindu extremists. They also confessed that burning Muslims alive in Samjhota Express and many other Muslims killings was by Hindu extremists of RSS supported by BJP. Pakistan has right to demand custody of those killers already named by those two ministers.Recommend

  • thehinduzionist

    @Jinnah: what about somnath mandir?
    what about al asqa?
    what about hagia sophia?
    what about bamiyan buddha?
    what about vishwanath temple.

    first you should wipe yours clean before trying to wipe others .
    go it ? you muslimRecommend

  • B.Ally

    The pictures shows our pathtic mentality.Recommend

  • Monika

    @Jinnah:
    ignorance is a bliss. The Babri mosque was built on a demolished temple and these temples, rather no temples in South Asia have been built after demolishing a shrine of any other religious community. Secondly, Mosques in India are well taken care of and there are even governmental funds for their restoration. Recommend

  • Giri

    @Jinnah: Worship in Babri stopped long back as the Muslims felt that it was a Mandir.The archeologists who excavated this site was BB.Lal.He wrote that there was a temple in that site and had been destroyed.This was long before the controversy started seriously by BJP. Further when L.K Advani went on rath yatra,an asst.Archeologist who worked under BB Lal confirmed in the Indian Express that there was indeed a temple and HE WAS A MUSLIM.
    So the point is its just a structure as there was no namaz and originally belonged to the Hindus. Recommend

  • Vishwanath JR

    @Jinnah:

    You may be write,, but SURELY these temples are not built after dismentaling the Masjids beloved by muslims.Recommend

  • Hindu

    @Jinnah:

    Jinnah,

    I am sad that you have passed this comment. Your ancestors were hindus, you should not forget. Aurangzeb killed people and destroyed hindu temples!Recommend

  • Hindu

    @kaalchakra:

    Why don’t you take your Shabana and SRK to Pakistan?Recommend

  • Sambhav Bohra

    Can you please shut off with your extremist mind……….babri mosque was vanished intentionally but in pakistan nearly all hindus and sikhs temples are totally vanished intentionally………do you know that….in India thousands of mosques are fully functional and are not in dangar like temples in PakistanRecommend

  • Nishit ranjan Das

    dear Brother,

    I convey my thanks to U for publishing the image and facts crossing the barrier of any kind. rept. I than u again
    Yours
    NishitRecommend