Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari today expressed concern at damage to the centuries—old Katasraj Temple in Punjab province due to environmental degradation caused by industrial complexes and sought a report from authorities.
Zardari had called for a report from the relevant ministry after taking note of a media report that industrial complexes around Katasraj Temple had “destroyed its pristine beauty and threatened the natural water pond with complete extinction”, presidential spokesman Farhatullah Babar said.
“The President called for restoration in a scientific manner of ancient sites having historical and religious significance.
“He said that all ancient and historical sites of significance to followers of any religion were part of our civilisation too and needed to be preserved and protected,” Babar said.
Recent reports had said that Shri Amar Kund, the sacred pond at the Katasraj Temple complex , was drying up because groundwater in the region is being used by a cement factory.
The presidential spokesman said the natural pond at the temple had been in existence for thousands of years and had attracted “pilgrims from far and wide in the South Asian subcontinent“.
He said, “Since ages, water flowed from the pond to downstream villages of Wahoola, Tatral and Dulmial without any drop in the pond level that was constantly replenished by the spring waters underneath.
“However, industrial units constructed near the site had sucked up groundwater resulting in the drying up the pond“.According to Hindu mythology, the holy pond was formed when Lord Shiva wept over the death of his beloved wife.The temples are located 40 km from Chakwal, were built by Hindu kings around 900 years ago. - PTI