30, Oct 2015
Oct 30 2015 : The Times of India (Mumbai)
Midnapore:A Muslim school clerk who has been involved in conservation of 30 ancient temples, and was honoured for his efforts, on Thursday decided to return the honour bestowed on him, in protest against rising intolerance in India.
Yasin Pathan was honoured with the Kabir Award in 1994 for his efforts. Pathan, from Midnapore, hopes his gesture will “make a statement for communal harmony“. The 63-year-old former school clerk has been involved in preserving temples since 1971. His efforts prompted the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to take up several restoration projects.
On Thursday , he said he was alarmed by the “shocking rise in in cidents based on com munal issues“. “I’ve been in touch with ar tistes who have re turned their awards.The intolerance level is rising steadily across India.Communal issues are cropping up. Since I am involved with preserving communal harmony , I can’t bear to see this. The award feels like a burden,“ Pathan told TOI.