Islamabad: Pakistan has started the construction process of a Rs 10 crore Hindu temple -- the first in Islamabad.
The Krishna temple will come up in a 20,000 sq ft plot at the capital's H-9 area.
The groundbreaking ceremony for the temple was performed by Parliamentary Secretary on Human Rights Lal Chand Malhi on Tuesday.
Addressing the gathering, Malhi said there were several pre-1947 era temple structures in Islamabad and its adjoining areas, including one at Saidpur village and at the hill point overlooking the Korang river near Rawal lake. However, they have been abandoned and not used.
The Hindu population in Islamabad has increased significantly in the last two decades and, therefore, the temple was necessary, the Dawn News quoted Malhi as saying.
He also rued the lack of crematorium in Islamabad for the minority community.
Religious Affairs Minister Pir Noorul Haq Qadri said the government will bear the cost of the construction, currently estimated at Rs 10 crore, the report said.
Citing a senior official of the ministry, it said the minister has already taken up the matter of special grant for the temple with Prime Minister Imran Khan.
The Islamabad Hindu Panchayat has named the temple as Shri Krishna Mandir.
The plot for the temple was allotted to the Hindu Panchayat by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) in 2017. However, the construction work was delayed due to some formalities, including the approval of the site map and documents from the CDA and other relevant authorities.
The temple complex will also have a cremation site, apart from the space for separate structures for other religious rites.