ISLAMABAD - The move of the PTI government to build the first-ever temple in Islamabad to enhance interfaith harmony has received much appreciation from the Hindu community around the country.

The Hindu community hailed the decision as it was an important move to convince the world community regarding the positive attitude of Pakistan towards religious freedom.

For the purpose, Prime minister Imran Khan has approved grant of Rs100 million.

As per the official data, the land allotted for the temple is almost 20,000 square feet assigned to the Hindu Council by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) in 2017 but the construction was delayed due to administrative issues. Earlier, in the ground breaking ceremony of the temple in Islamabad, many Hindu leaders including the Parliamentary Secretary on Human Rights Lal Chand Malhi, Preetam Das, Mahesh Chaudhry, Ashok Kumar and Chaman Lal of Hindu Panchayat took part.

Meanwhile, talking to The Nation, a Hindu citizen from Islamabad said that they had been waiting for this day as they used to go to another city to worship.

He stated that it was a strong message to India as minorities in India were facing many religious issues and still Pakistan was playing a mature role to give religious freedom to every citizen.

Anotherlocal Hindu leader from Peshawar, Preetm Rathan Das, stated that the government should also start work on the restoration of many other temples which are closed for years.

He stated that in coming years Pakistan will become a religious tourism hub for Hindus and Sikhs as Pakistan currently is more focused on the religious freedom and opening of Kartar Pura border is an evidence of it.

Earlier, a delegation of MNAs led by Noor ul Haq Qadri including MNAs belonging to religious minorities including Lal Chand Malhi, Dr Ramesh Vankwani, Jai Prakash Ukrani, Shunila Ruth and James Thomas in a meeting had requested the PM Imran Khan for the grant for the temple.