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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Pakistan’s Prahladpuri Temple waits for the colours of Holi


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India is all set to celebrate the exuberant festival of colours, Holi, but surprisingly, no place in all over India has a stronger relation with Holi than what the festival has with Pakistan’s Multan. Pakistan is related to the festival of Holi through the Hindu Prahladpuri Temple which is situated in Multan. It is believed that the start of Holi was marked at this temple in erstwhile India, which is now in Pakistan. It is said that it was here that Lord Vishnu had appeared in his Narsingh form, and had killed Hiranya Kashyapa for the protection of Prahalad. After which Prahalad had made a temple for the Lord here.

This place has been called Mulsthana in the Vedas, and the beginning of Holi took place in this temple. But like several other Hindu temples in the Muslim-majority Pakistan, this Hindu temple was desecrated as well, and the government banned devotees from visiting this temple to worship their Lord. Earlier, Holika Dehan was celebrated here for two days, and the festival of Holi, for 9 full days, but now, neither the colours of devotion are seen here, nor Holi songs are heard. The Pakistan government has, many a times, talked about the re-development of this temple, but for the last 31 years, only the idol of Lord Narsingh is sitting in the desecrated temple.

Priya Vallabh Devi Das, who is associated with the ISKCON movement in Karachi, said that earlier, some devotees used to go to the temple to perform hawan, and to worship their deity, and used to clean the temple. But now, after it has been closed down, people cannot go to the temple in groups, and bow down to their deity one by one, from the outside of the temple only. For decades, this temple is waiting for its devotees and their rituals of worship, and the Hindu families here are in the hope of this temple reopening soon.

Sonakshi Datta
Sonakshi Datta
Journalist who wants to cover the truth which others look the other way from.

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