Issue visas to people with 'open heart' for religious visits: Jathedar to India, Pak govts

As stopping Muslims from going to Haj and Hindus from visiting the Sri Katas Raj temple is a crime, it is not just to stop Sikhs from visiting Sri Nankana Sahib and other Sikh shrines left in Pakistan, he said.It is a matter that the governments of both the countries should discuss seriously and work to grant visas with open heart to people of every faith to visit their religious shrines, said the Jathedar.


PTI | Amritsar | Updated: 16-08-2022 22:35 IST | Created: 16-08-2022 22:35 IST
Issue visas to people with 'open heart' for religious visits: Jathedar to India, Pak govts
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Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh on Tuesday appealed to governments of Pakistan and India to issue visas to people with ''open heart'' so that they could visit their religious places in both countries.

The Jathedar said this on a day people who lost their lives during the Partition in 1947 were remembered at the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of the Sikhs.

A special prayer was organised, which was followed by a “bhog” of the Sri Akhand Path Sahib and Gurbani kirtan.

The Akal Takht Jathedar said governments of India and Pakistan should pass condolence resolutions in their parliaments for lakhs of people who lost lives during the Partition and suffered the pain of displacement.

He said open visas should be granted with a ''big heart'' to those people who took birth before 1947 on either side so that they could easily visit their birthplace, ancestral places and religious shrines.

''Punjabis suffered the most during the Partition in 1947 followed by the Bengalis. People of two states, Punjab and Bengal, struggled most fiercely against the British.'' The Jathedar said while the Punjabis lost lives in big numbers, they also had to leave their lands, properties, homes and holy Sikh shrines.

''This pain is still alive in the minds of Punjabis and while they want to see their birthplace, they also long to visit their holy shrines. As stopping Muslims from going to Haj and Hindus from visiting the Sri Katas Raj temple is a crime, it is not just to stop Sikhs from visiting Sri Nankana Sahib and other Sikh shrines left in Pakistan,'' he said.

''It is a matter that the governments of both the countries should discuss seriously and work to grant visas with open heart to people of every faith to visit their religious shrines,'' said the Jathedar. He also expressed concern over the present situation of Punjab.

''Inhumane phenomena like drug addiction and ecological crisis due to carelessness towards nature are taking Punjab towards the brink of destruction,'' he said.

Let us unite to save generations of Punjab from drugs and ecological crisis as air, water and land has become poisonous today, he said. Speaking to the media, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee chief Harjinder Singh Dhami said many Sikh shrines were left on the Pakistan side, of which some are well maintained while others are neglected.

''The governments should pay attention towards Sikh shrines in Pakistan,'' said Dhami.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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