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Trudeau wants Golden Temple visit to be simple, ‘to feel the spirituality’

Justin Trudeau doesn’t want to be accompanied by anyone except his family members — wife and three children — once he enters the shrine complex.

punjab Updated: Feb 19, 2018 22:24 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amritsar
Justin Trudeau,Trudeau in Amritsar,Golden temple
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (AFP file )

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wants his Wednesday visit to the Golden Temple, among the holiest shrines of Sikhs, to be kept simple, so that he can enjoy the spiritual atmosphere, said Roop Singh, chief secretary of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), after a conversation with a team of Canadian officials who made a review visit on Monday.

“We’ve been told by the Canadian authorities that Justin Trudeau doesn’t want to be accompanied by anyone except his family members — wife and three children — once he enters the shrine complex. Actually, he wants everything going on as normal. He wants to feel the spirituality that he has heard about,” said the SGPC official, adding, “We will make proper security arrangements inside the shrine, and we seek cooperation of the devotees too.”

Badals and Longowal to welcome him

SGPC officials said that only three persons will welcome the Canadian PM at the entrance plaza of the shrine — former deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is president of the Shiromani Akali Dal that controls the elected SGPC; his wife, Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal; and SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal. Two SGPC officials — a secretary-level staffer and the other from the information office — have been authorised to guide Trudeau.

He is later to meet CM Capt Amarinder Singh at a local hotel.

Security across the city has been beefed up. On Monday, police officials led by commissioner SS Srivastava visited the shrine and its surroundings. Also, beautification is going on in the city, especially on the roads that Trudeau is to take. Painters were seen decorating with artwork the walls of Bhandari Bridge.

First Published: Feb 19, 2018 22:24 IST