The first community-organised Durga puja in Pakistan will be held at a 150-year-old temple on a road named after Pakistan’s founder MA Jinnah in Karachi.
At the puja, the Sanskrit shlokas chanted will be written in Urdu script since the Hindus in Pakistan are not proficient in Sanskrit or Hindi.
“The Gita, written in the Urdu script, is available in cities such as Lahore. Since we have spent our entire life in Pakistan, there is hardly any scope to learn Sanskrit and Hindi,” Harish Mokani, office secretary to the Pakistan Hindu Council, told HT on Wednesday from Karachi.
The Swami Narayan Mandir, where the puja will be held from October 11 to 14, has been the venue for celebrations of other festivals like Diwali, Dussehra, Janmashtami and Sri Ram Navami.
“Every year we celebrate Dussehra with pomp. This year we have decided to organise Durga puja too,” said industrialist Jethanand Doonger Mal Kohistani, president of the Pakistan Hindu Council and the moving spirit behind the puja.
The council also does social work for the Hindu community there. There are more than 70 lakh Hindus in Pakistan, most of whom are in Sindh province whose capital is Karachi.