Islamabad: Two Hindus were injured when
traders opened fire at them following a dispute over the land
of a temple in Pakistan`s southern Sindh province, according
to a media report today.
The dispute began after two traders encroached on the
land of Aakharo Temple at Umerkot in Sindh while expanding
their shop. The temple is located in the middle of Umerkot
town and is believed to be 100 years old. It is spread over
three acres and has 50 shops along its boundary walls.
Two traders, Zulfiqar Punjabi and his brother Hafeez
Punjabi, began construction to expand their rented shop
without seeking permission from the temple?s administration,
The Express Tribune reported.
Seth Jhaman, an elder of the Hindu community, said,"They
started the construction work last week but when we
complained, the police stopped them." Elders of the Muslim and
Hindu communities mediated and contacted parliamentarian Nawab
Yousaf Talpur for help.
When the traders resumed the construction, the Hindus
went to talk to them yesterday. The traders then opened fire,
injuring Rano, 23, and Mool Chan, 30. The two men were taken
to a hospital in Hyderabad city in a serious condition.
The town of Umerkot shut down to protest the shooting and
due fears of possible riots. Police said they had arrested a
few men linked to traders. Superintendent of Police Munir
Khuhro said a picket had been set up at the temple.
Parliamentarians Yousaf Talpur, Mahesh Malani and Kishan
Chand Parwani have contacted the Hindus and assured them of
help. Seth Jhaman said some armed men were still inside the
Sindh province has a sizeable Hindu population.