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Pakistan: Indian diplomats stopped from meeting Sikh pilgrims in Lahore gurdwara

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 23 November 2018, 08:34 AM
ISI officials stopped the entry of Indian diplomats from meeting Sikh pilgrims at Gurudwara Sacha Sauda in Farooqabad on Thursday
ISI officials stopped the entry of Indian diplomats from meeting Sikh pilgrims at Gurudwara Sacha Sauda in Farooqabad on Thursday

Even as the Sikh community in Pakistan is observing the 550th birthday of Sri Guru Nanak Dev at Nankana Sahib and Gurdwara Sacha Sauda, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) officials masquerading as Sikhs stopped the entry of Indian diplomats from Islamabad from meeting Indian pilgrims visiting Gurudwara Sacha Sauda in Farooqabad near Lahore on Thursday morning. The Indian High Commission officials led by Ranjit Singh and Sunil Kumar were also allegedly insulted outside the holy place and were stopped from entering the premises of Gurdwara Nankana Sahib on Wednesday night as well.

In a video, the Indian diplomat, who himself is a Sikh was found saying, “There are many gurdwaras in India and other parts of the world, but there are no restrictions on anywhere. We have witnessed this for the first time that someone is being stopped from entering Guru’s House. This is a violation of sanctity of Gurudwara,” as quoted by news agency ANI.

Read More | Kartarpur Corridor from Punjab to Pakistan border gets Cabinet nod

When the Indian diplomat asked Pakistani officials to allow them to enter the gurudwara premises as a normal pilgrim, Gopal Singh Chawla, Chairman of Punjabi Sikh Sangat argued with him and asked him to come some other day.

Others who were in the group including Ramesh Singh Arora, a former member of provincial assembly and Tara Singh Pardhan, told the Indian diplomats that “they are helpless” and that they cannot allow them to enter the gurudwara.

Also Read | Pakistan agrees to open Kartarpur corridor for Sikh pilgrims

In a significant development on Thursday, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi agreed to India's decision to open the Kartarpur corridor, saying PM Imran Khan will break ground to develop passage between Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur and the shrine on 28 November. Along with Sikh pilgrims from across the globe, the Indian jatha are to visit religious shrines and gurdwaras in Pakistan from November 21 to November 30.

While Pakistan prevented Indian High Commission officials to meet Sikh pilgrims visiting Pakistan, India recently allowed Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India Sohail Mahmood to travel to ‘Sirhind Sharif’ to take part in the chaddar-laying ceremony, along with the pilgrims from Pakistan.

First Published: Friday, November 23, 2018 08:18 AM
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