India slammed Pakistan after a statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh was vandalised in Lahore, saying Islamabad has completely failed in its duty to prevent such attacks which are creating a "climate of fear" among the minority communities. Incidents of violence against minority communities, including attacks on their places of worship, their cultural heritage, as well as their private property, are increasing at an "alarming rate" in Pakistan, Ministry OF External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said.
"We have seen disturbing reports in the media about the vandalisation of the statue of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in Lahore on Tuesday. This is the third such incident where the statue has been vandalised, since it was unveiled in 2019," he said responding to media queries regarding the vandalisation.
"Such attacks on the cultural heritage of minority communities in Pakistan highlight the growing intolerance and lack of respect for minority communities in Pakistani society," he said. The MEA spokesperson also referred to an attack on a place of worship of the minority community a few days ago in Pakistan's Rahim Yar Khan.
"It was only 12 days ago that a mob attacked and desecrated a Hindu temple in Rahim Yar Khan in Pakistan," he said. "The Pakistani state has completely failed in its duty to prevent such attacks," Bagchi said, adding, "This is creating a climate of fear for the minority communities to practice their faith."
He also asked Pakistan to ensure the safety, security and well-being of its minority communities. “We call upon the government of Pakistan to ensure the safety, security and well-being of its minority communities," he said.