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Court convicts 22 for vandalizing Hindu temple in Rahim Yar Khan

12 May, 2022
<p>The video of the ransacking of the Hindu temple was widely shared on social media. Screengrab via social media</p>

The video of the ransacking of the Hindu temple was widely shared on social media. Screengrab via social media

An anti-terrorism court in Bahawalpur has handed down five year sentences to 22 accused for vandalizing a Hindu temple in Rahim Yar Khan’s Bhong town.

ATC judge Nasir Hussain acquitted 62 others named in the case on the basis of benefit of doubt.

In August 2021, a frenzied mob attacked a Hindu temple in Bhong after an eight-year-old Hindu boy, charged with blasphemy over accusation of urinating in a madrassa, was granted bail.

Police arrested 84 people involved in the attack on the temple.

A similar incident happened in Decemeber 2020 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Karak district after a mob led by supporters of a local cleric severely damaged a Hindu shrine and set it on fire.

Police arrested the accused in the case, but two months later a jirga backed by the provincial government helped the residents of Karak district and members of the Hindu community reach an agreement to settle the issues.

Those involved in the attack apologised the Hindu community for vandalising their shrine. The Hindu community accepted their apology and assured the jirga that they would cooperate with them on all issues, including the release of those detained on the charge of demolishing the shrine.

The shrine was restored and inaugurated on the occasion of Diwali.