Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa govt to restore 19th century Sikh temple

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Peshawar, May 21 (PTI) The provincial government in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has taken hold of a 19 century Gurudwara built during the reign of Sikh ruler Hari Singh Nalwa, to renovate and open it for devotees.

Presently, the Sikh temple in Mansehra district is closed and acts as a makeshift library, officials said.

The provincial government said restoration of the Gurdwara would promote religious tourism as a large number of Sikh worshippers from across the world have evinced interest to visit the shrine.

Earlier in February, the provincial Auqaf and Religious Affairs Department had recommended the local government to take up the restoration proposal with the Evacuee Property Trust Board (EPTB) in Lahore.

The EPTB is a statutory board that manages religious properties and shrines of Hindus and Sikhs who had migrated to India following the Partition.

The Evacuees Property Trust Board has declared the Gurdwara an historic asset and directed the Department of Local Government, KPK, to vacate the building premises, including the library.

The Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee has welcomed the restoration plan.

Hari Singh Nalwa (1791–1837) was the commander of the Sikh Empire. He is remembered for the battles in Kasur, Sialkot, Attock, Multan, Kashmir, Peshawar and Jamrud. Over 56 buildings, including forts, towers, gurdwaras, tanks, are said to be built under his direct supervision. PTI AYZ IND AKJ IND

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