Thursday January 27, 2022

Pakistan makes arrangements for Sikh pilgrims on Guru Nanak's birth anniversary: FO

FO spokesperson says "we are ready to welcome Sikh pilgrims coming to Pakistan on Guru Nanak's 552nd birth anniversary"

By Web Desk
November 12, 2021
Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

Pakistan has made wide-ranging arrangements to facilitate the inward movement of Sikh pilgrims to celebrate Guru Nanak's birth anniversary, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), Asim Iftikhar Ahmad, said Friday.

While speaking at a weekly briefing, Ahmad said that Pakistan opened the Kartarpur Corridor in June 2020, adding that he hopes the Indian government will allow Sikh citizens to take advantage of the transit route to Kartarpur.

"We are ready to welcome Sikh pilgrims coming to Pakistan on the occasion of Guru Nanak's 552nd birth anniversary," Ahmad said. 

Pakistan issues 3,000 visas to Indian Sikh pilgrims

A statement issued by the Pakistan High Commission for India said that the commission has issued around 3,000 visas to Indian Sikh pilgrims to travel to Pakistan on the eve of the 552nd birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak.

The celebrations will take place from November 17 to November 26, 2021,  read the statement.

 During their stay in Pakistan, the Sikh pilgrims would pay obeisance at different gurdwaras, including Gurdwara Janam Asthan in Nankana Sahib and Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur.

Visas to the Sikh pilgrims have been issued under the Pakistan-India Protocol on Visits to Religious Shrines of 1974, which provides for the visit of 3,000 Sikh pilgrims from India for the birthday celebrations of Baba Guru Nanak. Thousands of Sikh pilgrims residing in countries other than India would also be visiting Pakistan to attend the event.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has taken several initiatives for the facilitation of Sikh pilgrims, including the historic opening of the visa-free Kartarpur Sahib Corridor in November 2019 on the occasion of the 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak.

The magnificent, newly built Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib complex was a gift by the people of Pakistan and their leadership to the Sikh community from India and worldwide.

Pakistan High Commission in India has also extended profound felicitations to the Sikh community in India and across the world on the 552nd Birth Anniversary of the founder of the Sikh religion. The High Commission also wishes a spiritually-rewarding yatra to the pilgrims visiting Pakistan on this occasion.

The issuance of the maximum number of pilgrimage visas is in line with the Government of Pakistan’s efforts for promoting visits to religious shrines in Pakistan.