It is not only the people in India who are facing the heat of demonetisation, the Sikh jatha that returned from Pakistan, on Monday, had also experienced the same across border.
Back from Pakistan after observing the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the pilgrims reached via special trains at Attari station. They claimed to have faced a lot of currency-related problems in Pakistan.
Pilgrim Paranjit Kaur said, “It was tough to make transactions using Indian currency as people in Pakistan were not ready to accept it. Shopping even for the necessary things was tough. Leave aside the banned Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes; people in Pakistan were not accepting Rs 100 notes as well.”
Another pilgrim Satwant Singh Kahlon mentioned that this was a good tour as far as pilgrimage was concerned, but pilgrims had to struggle a lot on the monetary front.
“Shopkeepers across border were not accepting the old notes, and currency changers accepted the Indian currency at a low value,” he said.
When the jatha went to Pakistan, the pilgrims had feared facing such problems in Pakistan. And their apprehension turned out to be true.
“We had no arrangement to change the banned currency. Pilgrims had to live on limited cash as Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes were not accepted anywhere,” said another pilgrim Kulwant Kaur.
DEAD PILGRIM’S BODY BROUGHT BACK
The dead body of one of the pilgrims, Prem Singh, reached India through the train. The 70-year-old pilgrim, who hailed from Ludhiana, died of heart attack.
He had died in Lahore on Sunday.
His son, Gurmeet Singh, had reached Attari station to receive the body.