Sikh religion and Indo-Pak
Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee Pardhan Sardar Satwant Singh has said that the Sikh community is enjoying full freedom in Pakistan. While addressing a press conference at Gurdwara Dera Sahib Lahore regarding forthcoming Sikh Religious event of Saka on Thursday, he said the voice for Khalistan was raised with-in India as a result of atrocities being committed by the Indian rulers. He said the Sikh people always try to highlight the steps taken by the government for minorities in Pakistan. He said that the government allowed Sikhs to come to Pakistan to participate in 100-year celebrations of Saka, a religious festival, adding that the Pakistan government made arrangements for Sikh Yatrees but the Indian government stubbornly stopped them from joining the religious festival.
The Sikh community is residing in India, Pakistan, Europe, and North America. Fortunately, most of Sikh religious sites are situated in Pakistan including Dera Sahib Lahore, Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of Guru Nanak Sahib Ji, the founder of Sikhism, Punja Sehib Hassan-abdal and others. Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (PSGPC) represent the community and protect the holy sites and heritage of the Sikh religion in Pakistan. Government of Pakistan is fully committed to provide all facilities to Sikh Yatrees across the world including India to observe their religious obligations in safe and secure environment freely.
During past days, Indian government denied permission to 600 Sikh pilgrims intending to visit gurdwaras in Pakistan citing false reasons of the security and COVID-19 situation in the country on 17 Feb 2021. Both reasons cited by Indian government are untrue, Pakistan had managed the pandemic more successfully than India and highly acknowledged and appreciated by the World. There is no such security situation in Pakistan as currently witnessing by India in the backdrop of ongoing Farmers protests mostly by Sikh formers from Indian Punjab and UP.
While responding to a media query during weekly press briefing, Pakistan Foreign Office Spokesperson, Zahid Hafeez Chaudhry underscored that Pakistan provides maximum facilitation to the Sikh yatrees from all over the world, including India, for visiting their religious sites in Pakistan, Chaudhry urged that India should also facilitate Sikh pilgrims for visiting their religious sites in Pakistan. Pakistan is fully committed to its national and international obligations which has been admired by the international community.