Buddha statue destroyed in Mardan on prayer leader’s orders
Police arrest four accused after reaction on social media
Four people were arrested in Mardan on Saturday after they destroyed a life-size statue of Buddha on the orders of a local prayer leader, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
The locals not only followed the cleric’s directive without any question but also filmed the destruction of the precious statue.
Your nikah (wedlock) would cease to exist and you will no more be a believer if the statue isn’t disposed of, the prayer leader told the people.
It can be seen in the video that the statute was recovered in a good condition from the property of a local Jamal Khan but the people hammered it into pieces within no time.
Earlier the police were slow to react to the news. However, when the social media exploded with reactions from a large number of people criticising the incident, the police swung into action and made the arrests.
Takht Bai is known around the world for being the main cradle of the Buddhist civilisation, especially the Buddhist monastery which is included in the World Heritage List. As a result, relics are regularly found in the area by locals because the entire area was once a centre of this civilisation.
In 2001, the entire world was shocked when the Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar ordered to destroy the two famous Buddha statues in Bamiyan province of central Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, this vandalism triggered a strong reaction on social media as people from different walks of life criticised the culprits. They said the Archaeology Department must take control of the site as there was a real possibility of more statues and other archaeological remains found there.
This is criminal. However, hope the Archeology Dept has taken control of the site and nearby. There is a real possibility of more such statues & other archeological remains there. https://t.co/hLHuQbx5qd— Ijaz Khan (@ijazkhan) July 18, 2020
Heart breaking.— Ahsan Hamid Durrani (@Ahsan_H_Durrani) July 18, 2020
A life sized statue of Buddha was discovered in a construction site in Takhtbhai, Mardan recently.
However, before the Archaeology dept was informed about it, the contractor had already broken it into pieces as the local molvi warned him that he would lose.. pic.twitter.com/nWHHzkOxe7
During digging, a giant statue of Buddha was discovered in Takhtbhai, Mardaan, KPK, 🍌Pakistan.— Arif Aajakia (@arifaajakia) July 18, 2020
Molbi came and said that break it. If you do not, you will burn in hell.
Therefore people found short cut to heavens. Breaking heritage, ashamed of origin. Society of such hypocrites. pic.twitter.com/lPk4ts9kK2
Destruction of cultural heritage... "A life-size statue of Buddha discovered at construction site in Takhtbhai, Mardan. Contractor broke it into pieces as local maulvi told him that he would lose his faith & his nikah will also not remain valid." Text & video via Hamid Afridi pic.twitter.com/bf8zlruQyV— Bilal Farooqi (@bilalfqi) July 18, 2020