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March 25, 2014

Pakistanis rally to save Hindu temple

Construction of overpass and skyscraper threatens structure of ancient temple in Karachi.

Pakistani labourers work at a construction site of an underpass near a Hindu temple in Karachi on March 24, 2014. (AFP/RIZWAN TABASSUM)

Pakistani Hindus and human rights activists are calling on authorities in Karachi to halt the construction of an overpass, which they argue threatens the foundation of a 150-year-old Hindu temple. Activists say the overpass construction, metres away from the Shree Ratneshwar Mahadev Temple, is creating vibrations that could severely damage the building's structure. 

Chief Justice of Pakistan Tassaduq Hussain Jillani took action on the issue by ordering an environmental impact report from the government to be submitted within two weeks. The overpass is financed by Bahria Town, a real estate developer that wants the road to link to a skyscraper it is building a few hundred metres away.