Neighbours Join Hands To Restore Old Temple In Jammu And Kashmir's Pulwama

The restoration work was disrupted after the recent tension following reports of harassment of Kashmiris across the country in the wake of the suicide attack that killed 40 CRPF soldiers

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The temple being restored in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama


Srinagar: 

Just 15 km from the site of the suicide attack on a CRPF convoy in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama, Muslims and Pandits have joined hands to restore an 80-year-old temple at Achan village in the district.

The restoration work was disrupted after the recent tension following reports of harassment of Kashmiris across the country in the wake of the suicide attack that killed 40 CRPF soldiers.

On Maha Shivratri, work resumed with Muslims serving traditional Kashmiri Kehwa tea to everyone at the temple. The Jamia Masjid is just adjacent to the temple. The locals involved in the restoration say they want to hear the temple's bells with calls of Azaan.

"Our heartfelt desire is that same old times return which was here 30 years ago when temple bells ring here and on other the side call of Azaan from mosque," said Mohammad Younis, a resident.

What is heart-warming is the effort to restore the temple despite the fact that there is only one Pandit family in the village after the exodus of 1990. Villagers say the restoration work started after the Pandit family approached the Masjid Auqaf committee because the temple was in a dilapidated condition.

"Our neighbours who are Muslims are doing it because they respect this temple," said Bhushan Lal, another resident.

His younger brother, Sanjay Kumar, said it's their Muslim neighbours who are more important to them than their relatives who have migrated from the village. 

He said it's not just restoration of the temple but they take care of everything in most troubled times. "We live here like brothers and the Awqaf committee helped us in its restoration" said Mr Kumar.

Mohammad Maqbool, who is looking after restoration work, says they are doing it because they don't want their neighbours to feel alone. "Our effort to restore this temple is because we our Pandit brothers should not feel that their temple is incomplete," said Mr Maqbool.

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