AMRITSAR: Perturbed over poor maintenance and upkeep of ancient Hindu temples at Katasraj, situated in Chakwal district of Pakistan, the All India Mahajan Jagaran Manch (MJM) has announced to perform ‘karsewa’ ( voluntary service) at these temples.
“They whitewash, clean and put lights in the temples before arrival of Hindu jathas from India and lock them as we leave Katasraj,” said MJM president Manch Gulshan Mahajan while talking to TOI on Friday. Mahajan had recently returned from Katasraj pilgrimage. Notably, many Hindu devotees had complained of poor maintenance of Hindu temples and installation of ‘khandit’ (broken) idols of Hindu deities. A few had even said that they were told by Pak officials that they had kept the idols in a museum for their preservation.
He said the temples should be opened daily and permanent priest should be appointed to perform daily religious rituals. He informed that MJM would communicate with the concerned ministry for seeking permission for karsewa.
President of All India Hindu Shiv Sena, Surinder Kumar Billa said, “According to my information there are no idols in the temples and makeshift arrangements are made during visit of Hindu jathas from India”. He also informed that there was a broken Shivalingmam in a temple close to Amar Kund, which was polluted by the effluents coming from a nearby cement factory.
Subhash Mahajan, another devotee, informed that the idols of Parvati, Ganesha and Shiva, which were installed about years ago were also broken. “We will not only perform karsewa but also install new idols,” he said. Gulshan said when they took up the issue with authorities of Pakistan Evacuee Trust Property Board, which manage gurdwaras and temples in Pakistan, they were not given any satisfactory reply. “They just tried to impress us with warm hospitability. We don’t want that. We want to restore the pride of our temples,” he said.