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Mob Ransacks Temple in Pakistan After A Minor Boy Gets Bail in Desecration Case, India Lodges Protest

This image shows a mob vandalising a Hindu temple in Bhong town. — DawnNewsTV

The Bhong police had registered a case against the Hindu minor boy under section 295-A of the Pakistan Penal Code on July 24.

Team Clarion

NEW DELHI — After a mob attack on a Hindu temple in Rahim Yar Khan area of Punjab province of Pakistan, India on Thursday expressed “grave concern” and  lodged a ‘firm protest’ on the issue. New Delhi also asked Islamabad to ensure the “safety, security and well-being of its minority communities”.

On Wednesday, hundreds of people reportedly vandalised a Hindu temple in Bhong town and blocked the Sukkur-Multan Motorway (M-5) after a nine-year old Hindu boy, who allegedly urinated in a local seminary, was granted bail by a local court.

Responding to the situation late in the evening, the district administration deployed rangers in the area after Deputy Commissioner Dr Khuram Shehzad and District Police Officer Asad Sarfraz visited the town.

Sources said on the complaint of a cleric, Hafiz Muhammad Ibrahim, of Darul Uloom Arabia Taleemul Quran, the Bhong police had registered a case against the boy under section 295-A of the Pakistan Penal Code on July 24.

They said some Hindu elders did tender an apology to the seminary administration saying the accused was a minor and mentally challenged. But, when a lower court granted him bail a few days ago, some people incited the public in the town on Wednesday and got all shops there closed in protest, reports Dawn.

A video clip viral on social media showed some people wielding clubs and rods storming the temple and smashing its glass doors, windows, lights and damaging the ceiling fans.

However, the situation was taken under control after the deployment of rangers in the troubled area.

There are reports of some old monetary dispute between Hindu and Muslim groups in the area which was stated to be the actual cause of the unrest.

A small town close to the River Indus and Sindh-Punjab border, Bhong houses a number of gold traders who originally hail from Ghotki and Dehrki (Sindh).

In New Delhi, Ministry of External Affairs’ official spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said on Thursday that the Pakistani C’dA was summoned and a firm protest was lodged expressing “our grave concerns at this reprehensible incident and the continued attacks on the freedom of religion of the minority community and their places of religious worship” and “calling upon Pakistan to ensure the safety, security and well-being of its minority communities,” reports The Indian Express.

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