Sikh Community fleeing fighting in SWAT.
At Gurdwara Siri Punja Sahib Temple in Hasanabdad, more than 450 Sikh families have sought shelter from the recent fighting between militants and government forces in the Buner and SWAT districts if Pakistan...According to Dr Suran Singh, the 'Camp in Charge' person for the temple, the Sikh community fled and sought shelter at the Sikh temple not because of fear and persecution by the Taliban but because of the bombing and shelling by government forces on nearby houses and businesses. He said it was in everyone's interest to leave during the curfew periods dictated by the military as the fighting would inevitable cost innocent lives and those who stayed would not be able to survive because all businesses in the areas had closed. He emphasised that they had no quarrel with the Taliban and had not been forced to leave the area by militant forces...The Gurdwara Siri Punja Sahib Temple has some 305 rooms able to accommodate families with others being accommodated in adjoining areas of the temple. Dr Suran Sign praised the assistance that had been offered by both the local Muslim community, UNHCR and the government. He said they had been given medical provisions, bedding, clothing and resources to provide an ongoing education to the children at the temple...D Signh said the residents main concern was the destruction and arson of the local bank in his town which he claims had no computerised system. Many in the Sikh community had their life savings deposited with the bank, they now fear that the money has been either looted or destroyed with little in the way of proof to show for the savings they once had...Most people like 54 year old Mr Manjeet Singh had evacuated his family of 5 form SWAT on the 3rd of May. He also praised the facilities and efforts of the temple, saying that they had no immediate needs for IDP aid at the moment. He said his family was content living at close quarters in this self contained community but "home is home' - he prayed that the fighting woAdd to Lightbox Download