Sikh Temple opened in Peshawar for worship after 70 years

PESHAWAR: An ancient Sikh temple, Bhai Beba Singh, which remained non-functional for 70 years, was opened for worship at a special ceremony held in the newly renovated temple here on Wednesday. Minority communities expressed extreme jubilation over opening of the historic temple located at Mohallah Jogiwara at Hashtnagri area in the interior city.
Chairman Evacuee Property Trust, Siddiqul Farooq formally performed opening of the temple by unveiling the plaque. Special Assistant to Chief Minister KP on Minority Affairs, Sardar Suran Singh, Federal Secretary Shrines, Khalid Ahmad, Deputy Secretary Shrines, Imran Gondal, representatives of Sikh, Hindu and Christian communities were present on the occasion.
Religious rituals including Ardas and recitation of Gurugarant, holy book of Sikhs, were performed. Sikhs were excited over the opening of a revered place where their elders used to worship. “Opening of historic Sikh temple has portrayed true soft image of Pakistan where minorities are getting equal right to live and worship,” remarked Haroon Sarabdiyal in his sentimental speech on the occasion.
“Muslims have provided us space in the core of their heart and shown to the world that Pakistanis are not religious intolerant and extremist,” Haroon added. He said present government has proved that it is striving to fulfill the dream of Quaid-e-Azam, founder of Pakistan, about creation of a land where minorities live in mutual co-existence with Muslims.
Opening of Bhai Beba Singh Gurdwara has sown seed of inter-faith harmony at a time when the whole world is bearing the brunt of religious intolerance by extremists elements, Haroon said. “Government has provided due right to minorities by taking a difficult decision of opening a non-functional temple,” he said.
Sardar Suran Singh said people should know that minorities in Pakistan are living freely, going to their worship places freely and doing business in a very conducive manner. Member Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parband Committee (PSGPC), Sardar Bishan Singh said opening of temple is a big favor of government in general and people of Peshawar in particular.
He said it is also good gesture of Muslims that a closed temple remained safe and was not misused or occupied by anyone. Speaking on the occasion, Chairman Evacuee Property Trust Board, Siddiqul Farooq said it is day of happiness for minority community that their closed temple was opened for worship. He said he also allotted a plot of 2000 yards at Hassan Abdal to Sikh community for using as Shamshan Ghat.
He said present government is striving to fulfill the dream of Quaid-e-Azam of making Pakistan a fully tolerant country by giving equal right of minorities. APP