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India refuses to accept Sikh pilgrims

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    India refuses to accept Sikh pilgrims

    The Indian government has once again refused to accept special trains from Pakistan carrying around 3,000 Sikh yatrees, who came here last week to attend the birthday celebrations of Baba Guru Nanak.

    Highly placed sources in the Pakistan Railways told that senior officials had tried their best to contact their Indian counterparts but the Indian Railways officials did not bother to attend or reply to the phone. When asked about the return of the Sikh yatrees, the Indian officials simply said: "We will not allow entry to any Pakistani passenger train or coach carrying yatrees except Samjotha Express train. It is not our headache to facilitate the pilgrims. No special train or any coach is allowed to enter into the Indian territory with Sikh yatrees.

    What a pathetic situation.They don't even care for their own an yet they want to comment on Afghan situation.


    [This message has been edited by Musalman (edited November 12, 2000).]

    #2
    This is exactly what I have been saying for the last week or son! If thousands of Sikhs from all around the world can come to Pakistan then why is the Hindu government of India stopping Sikhs in India from coming? India is violating the religious ande cultural rights of Sikhs period!

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      #3
      So why not use Samjhota Express, if Sikhs want to visit Pak for the celebrations, perhaps they should’ve started moving a few weeks before the celebrations started. This situation is pathetic and sad for those who truly want to visit the Shrine. Waise we’ve often heard some of our Sikh members shouting how Pak should let Sikhs from india administrate Sikh holy temples in Pak - so if they aren’t even allowed to visit, and no alternative transport facility is provided, how come administration of sikh temples would be encouraged?

      Nice to see Pak taking part in media show, huh. It’s about time we and others know that Pak is not banning pilgrims or mis-managing Sikh temples as is believed by some Sikhs across the border, not that it matters to Pak!

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        #4
        India has not allowed the Indian Sikhs to board pakistani trains or buses going to Pakistan.
        This is a violation of their basic human right to the right to travel to their religious places or worship.
        As it can be seen by this incident that India does NOT want peace with pakistan.

        ------------------
        CROIRE A L'INCROYABLE
        You can't fix stupid. So might as well troll them!

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          #5
          India is obviously scared that once in Pakistan the Sikhs will take an anti-Indian position?

          Look at how Sikhs from all other parts of the world have travelled to Pakistan without hindrance - its because they are free to travel and their religious rights are resepected.

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            #6
            If proof were needed of the welcome Sikhs got from all over the world when they cam to Pakistan:-

            http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/wor...00/1021732.stm

            Pakistan hosts Sikh celebration

            Sikh pilgrims from all over the world congregated

            By Arif Shamim in Nankana Sahib
            Thousands of Sikhs from around the world have been celebrating the anniversary of the birth of the founder of their religion, Guru Nanak, in Pakistan.

            The pilgrims, who have travelled from North America, the United Kingdom and India, congregated at the city of Nankana Sahib, some 80 km from Lahore, where Guru Nanak was born in 1469.


            The usually quiet city was converted into a business centre, teeming with pilgrims shopping at the local markets with hordes of turbaned Sikhs and their families buying souvenirs for people back home.

            They were joined in the festivities by Pakistan's tiny Sikh and Hindu communities.

            "If we cannot be happy in our Mecca, then what else could make us happy," says Prem Singh Premi, 22, a Sikh resident of Nankana Sahib, said.

            Congregating

            Taranjit Singh from Bradford, England, said the trip was like a dream come true.

            "We are a group of about 49 peopleż Our spirits are high and we want to enjoy it till the end," he said.

            Satpal Singh Gill, an insurance broker also from Bradford, said that he was amazed to see Pakistan are taking care of the gurdwaras - the Sikh temples.

            A festive atmosphere

            "More money should be spent by the Sikh community here and it will not only increase the business activity but will further trigger the development of the area," he said.

            The pilgrims were welcomed by the Pakistani President, Rafiq Tarar, who formally inaugurated a newly constructed residential block in the Gurdwara premises.

            In turn, the leaders of the Sikh community presented the president with a ceremonial sword.

            Festivities

            The pilgrims spent most of their time flocking between the seven gurdwaras, each symbolising various events in Guru Nanak's life.


            Sardar Singh, from India, said he was happy he had made it to Pakistan.

            But he was bitter about a delay at the Indian border station, which led to protests by the Sikh community.

            "The ordeal at the Attari railway station in India is hard to forget. [The Indian authorities] did not do anything for us and we got stuck for almost 12 hours," he said.

            The festivities attracted roving minstrels, singing Punjabi folk poetry.

            Brightly coloured floats were on parade and banners from all over the world were strung up.

            The celebrations ended with a grand procession in which the Sikh holy book, the Granth Sahib, was carried on a flower-laden silver platform by bearers, into the gurdwara.

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