Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the Khalsa Diwan Gurdwara in Vancouver on Thursday. He was accompanied by the Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper.
At the Khalsa Diwan Society's Sikh Gurdwara, located on the southern edge of Vancouver, a large crowd of supporters gathered at the temple before filing inside.
Vancouver’s Sikh community hailed the occasion as ‘historic’, adding that the association would welcome him ‘open-heartedly’.
“This is a very significant visit. Prime Minister Modi is the third Indian prime minister to come here, after Jawaharlal Nehru in 1949 and Indira Gandhi in 1973. It is a big occasion for Khalsa Diwan Society and the community,” Khalsa Diwan Society president Sohan Singh Deo told ANI.
Modi is slated to visit the Laxmi Narayan Temple later on Thursday.
PM Modi, PM Harper remember Komagata Maru incident
Prime Minister Narendra Modi bowed in remembrance to the 1914 Komagata Maru incident, where hundreds of Sikh passengers were not allowed to alight on Canadian soil due to their Asian origin.
The official twitter account of the Prime Minister’s Office shared the information.
In remembrance of the Komagata Maru incident, the office wrote, also posting a picture of the two leaders.
The Komagata Maru was a Japanese steamship, which was sailing from Hong Kong to Vancouver with 376 passengers from Punjab on board, a majority of whom were Sikhs. Only 24 were admitted to Canada, while the rest were forced to return to India.