All set to welcome Sikh pilgrims

Published April 11, 2015
Indian Sikh pilgrims arrive at Wagah Railway Station in Wagah, to celebrate Baisakhi, or the Sikh New Year. – AFP/File
Indian Sikh pilgrims arrive at Wagah Railway Station in Wagah, to celebrate Baisakhi, or the Sikh New Year. – AFP/File

LAHORE: Around 2,000 Sikh pilgrims from India intending to participate in the annual Baisakhi festival in Pakistan have so far been issued visas by the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi.

More pilgrims (yatrees) are likely to be issued visas very soon, according to the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) chairman.

“In addition to this, 1,500 pilgrims from the UK, the US, Canada and Malaysia are likely to attend the festival scheduled to start from Saturday (today). Some of them have already arrived in Lahore,” ETPB chief Siddiqul Farooq told reporters at a press conference here on Friday.

He said the bureau was all set to facilitate the pilgrims and make their trip comfortable vis-à-vis security, lodging, boarding and travelling.

“On Saturday (today) morning, the ETPB administration led by me and members of the Pakistan Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee will personally receive the yatrees at Wagah Railway Station,” he added.

Farooq said he had talked to Punjab Home Minister Shuja Khanzada who had told him about foolproof security arrangements for the pilgrims at all the places they would visit in the 10 days of their stay.

To a question, he said 157 rooms had been renovated at the Gurdwara Panja Sahib in Hasan Abdal for the yatrees’ stay.

Meanwhile, Lahore Commissioner Abdullah Khan Sumbal held a meeting to review the administrative and security arrangements in Lahore and Nankana Sahib on the eve of Baisakhi festival. The meeting was told that a central control room had been set-up at the offices of district coordination officers of Lahore, Sheikhupura and Nankana.

The commissioner directed police and city district administrations to maintain close liaison with the ETPB during the entire trip.

Published in Dawn, April 11th, 2015

On a mobile phone? Get the Dawn Mobile App: Apple Store | Google Play

Opinion

Diverging paths
Updated 15 Apr 2021

Diverging paths

It seems that Imran Khan is feeling the pain of the adjustment that he has had to undertake.
Judging the judges
15 Apr 2021

Judging the judges

In the end, like Joan of Arc, they were made to pay with their blood.
People to people
Updated 15 Apr 2021

People to people

By facilitating access, the governments of India and Pakistan can start to build trust and understanding between the two publics.
Hostage to extremism
Updated 14 Apr 2021

Hostage to extremism

Once again, the TLP has succeeded in bringing the administration to its knees.

Editorial

Afghanistan exit
Updated 15 Apr 2021

Afghanistan exit

Afghanistan has suffered for decades as powerful local players have refused to compromise and have insisted on hogging power.
15 Apr 2021

New census

EARLIER this week, the Council of Common Interests approved the controversial National Population and Housing ...
15 Apr 2021

With no place to go

No matter where one looks, one can’t escape the heartrending sight of scores of children of all ages begging, ...
TLP protests
Updated 14 Apr 2021

TLP protests

For the good of the country, and its image as a nation where extremism has no place, such groups must be strictly reined in.
14 Apr 2021

PPP’s formal exit

THE PPP’s formal resignation from all offices of the PDM comes as no surprise after weeks of tension and public...
14 Apr 2021

Natanz attack

AS the P5+1 and Iran try to breathe life back into the JCPOA, as the nuclear deal is officially known, it appears...