How Muslims Preserved Shiv’s Temple In Mansehra

Shiv Temple After Renovation
Shiv Temple After Renovation

In 1830 Raja of Jammu constructed a Shiv Temple as an act of devotion in a region that is today known as Chitti Gatti, Mansehra, KPK. Little did he know back then that within the next few decades a new state called Pakistan would come into being and the site would have the distinction of being one of the oldest temples in the country. Moreover, back then it might also have been impossible to imagine that one day a group of Muslim students would work together to restore the site as a gesture of goodwill towards the local Hindu community.

In 2016 students of Hazara University launch a highly sustainable project titled, “Preserving Shiv’s Temple: An emblem of Hindus’ Survival Stretching Back Three Millennia”. After receiving financial support of Pakistan Youth Change Advocates (PYCA) the students collaborated with the Ministry of Religious Affairs & Interfaith Harmony, Govt. of Pakistan and Directorate of Archaeology & Museums to complete the restoration work.

Activities such as cleaning, dis-tempering, painting, installation of dustbins, lighting etc. were completed by Tehmash Khan and Aweel Nawaz so that the Hindu devotees coming from within the country and abroad were in a position to pay homage and celebrate the Annual Shivarastri Festival on a regular basis. The project has been appreciated by all quarters and has helped in presenting a softer image of the country on one hand and in promoting the sentiments of peace and tolerance in the region on the other.