A ‘jatha’ (group) of 319 Sikh pilgrims, led by Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), left for Pakistan on Tuesday to attend a function to mark the 177th death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
Apart from attending the event at gurdwara Dehra Sahib in Lahore and visiting the mausoleum of Maharaja Ranjit Singh on June 29, the pilgrims will also pay obeisance at Guru Nanak’s birthplace gurdwara Nankana Sahib, gurdwara Sacha Sauda, gurdwara Panja Sahib, gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib and gurdwara Rori Sahib. The group will return on June 30, said SGPC member Gurmeet Singh Booh, who along with Baldev Singh MA, is accompanying the pilgrims.
Booh said they would also have discussions with the Pakistan government and representatives of the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) to ensure reforms in Sikh shrines in the country.
He said they would urge the Nawaz Sharif government to ensure safety of Pakistan Sikhs.
SGPC chief secretary Harcharan Singh said of the 343 Sikh devotees’ names sent to the Centre and the Pakistan high commission, 24 were denied visa.