Pakistan okays plan to open Sharda Peeth corridor for Hindu pilgrims in PoK

  1. Pakistan Government has approved proposal to establish Sharda Peeth corridor that will allow Hindu pilgrims especially Kashmiri Pandits from India to visit the Sharda Peeth,an ancient Hindu temple and cultural site in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
  2. The Sharda Peeth corridor when opened will be the second religious tract after Kartarpur corridor in Pakistan-controlled territory that will connect India and Pakistan.
  3. The Sharda temple is situated in Neelam Valley,which is 160 km from Muzaffarabad, Pakistan and close to the Line of Control.The temple is revered by Kashmiri Pandits.It has been out of bounds for Indian pilgrims since partition.
  4. The Sharda Peeth is believed to have been established in 237 BC during the reign of Ashoka.It was considered one of the most important seats of learning in South Asia, like Nalanda and Takshashila where religion,philosophy, contemporary literature and astronomy were taught.
  5. The temple is also one of the 18 Maha Shakti Peethas or a “Grand Shakti Peethas”.It is considered to be the abode of Hindu Goddess Saraswati.The temple has close resemblance with the Martand temple (another religious site in Anantnag) in architecture,design and construction style.