Amidst ongoing bilateral tensions between India and Pakistan, The central government has declined permission to a Sikh delegation to visit Pakistan on the occasion of death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) sources said.
According to SGPC Secretary, Harcharan Sisngh, the Centre has declined permission due to security reasons. The Centre had told the SGPC that “if anyone wants to visit Pakistan then the Sikh religious body should give an undertaking that he or she is going on its own risk”.”We are yet to decide on it (whether to send the delegation),” he said.
A 251-member Sikh delegation is scheduled to go to Pakistan from June 21 to 29. The SGPC, the Sikh religious body, is facilitating the trip.
Earlier also, another delegation, which was to visit Pakistan last month for the martyrdom day of Guru Arjan Dev, was also denied visas due to alleged lack of clearance from the Centre, said Sukhdev Singh Bhullar, President, Bhai Mardana Memorial Foundation at Ferozepur. The gurdwara is situated opposite the Royal Mosque or Shahi Masjid at Lahore (Pakistan). At the place, Guru Arjan Dev, fifth Guru of Sikhs, was tortured and martyred by the then Mughal rulers in 1606.
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