Sikh Jatha to leave for Pakistan to celebrate Baisakhi today
A Sikh jatha comprising 437 pilgrims under the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and members from other Sikh bodies will leave for Pakistan on Monday to celebrate Baisakhi. The festival is also marked as the Khalsa Foundation Day among Sikhs.
In February, the Union home affairs ministry had refused permission to a Sikh jatha to go to Pakistan to attend the centenary event of Nankana Sahib massacre. “The Sikh community was angry over the denial of permission to pilgrims in February, but this time our preparations are complete,” said Kulwinder Singh Ramdas, spokesperson, SGPC. The apex gurdwara body is sending the largest group of pilgrims to Pakistan.
Members of the jatha had to submit a negative report of covid-19, which has been made mandatory for crossing the international border. The health department deputed its teams at the SGPC head office to conduct covid tests. Ten pilgrims tested positive and could not be part of the jatha.
During the 10-day tour that will end on April 22, the jatha will be part of the celebrations of Baisakhi at Gurdwara Panja Sahib and Hasan Abdal in Pakistan, They will visit Sikhism founder Guru Nanak’s birth place Nankana Sahib, Gurdwara Sacha Sauda and Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib etc.