SGPC delegation visits Pakistan to prepare for Saka Panja Sahib centenary : The Tribune India

SGPC delegation visits Pakistan to prepare for Saka Panja Sahib centenary

Will have discussions with officials of the PSGPC and ETPB regarding the event

SGPC delegation visits Pakistan to prepare for Saka Panja Sahib centenary

SGPC delegation led by President Harjinder Singh Dhami received by representatives of ETPB and PSGPC at Wagah Border on Wednesday. Tribune Photo



GS Paul

Amritsar, October 5

A delegation of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) crossed over the Attari-Wagah border today to finalise programmes pertaining to upcoming ‘Saka (massacre) Panja Sahib’ centenary in Pakistan.

The event falls on October 30 and is commemorated at Gurdwara Panja Sahib in Hasan Abdal, Rawalpindi, which is attended by ‘Nanaknaam leva’ devotees from all over the world.

Led by SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami, the delegation comprised SGPC’s general secretary Karnail Singh Panjoli, Dharam Parchar Committee member Balwinder Singh Kahlwan, yatra in-charge Rajinder Singh Ruby and SGPC member Bhai Rajinder Singh Mehta.

Meeting has been scheduled at Lahore with their Pakistani counterparts and the officials of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), a statutory board that administers religious, educational and charitable trusts in Pakistan.

Ruby said that special visas were procured from Pakistan and the meeting has been confirmed with the Chairman of the ETPB and the representatives of the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee.  

Earlier, the SGPC officials were a dejected lot due to lukewarm response from the Pakistan authorities on the request letter for granting them visas. Recently, they had met the officials of the Pakistan Embassy at New Delhi too.

SGPC intends to conduct Gurmat programmes at Gurdwara Panja Sahib by initiating Akhand Path on October 28 and the bhog would be performed on October 30. Besides, SGPC also wants to organise a special seminar dedicated to the occasion.

A special jatha too would also visit Pakistan to mark the occasion, later on.

Dhami said that the purpose of visiting Pakistan was to have face-to-face discussion with the officials of PSGPC and ETPB so that the arrangements could be made accordingly at both the ends. “We will also enquire about the Pakistan dignitaries who would attend the occasion so that the invitation should be extended to them from our side too,” he said.

If everything goes according to the plan, the SGPC also wants to hold Gurmat programme and ardas at the Hasan Abdal Railway Station, where the heroic incident took place on October 30, 1922.

Around 200 Sikhs blocked the track of the train that carried Sikh prisoners, who were sentenced to imprisonment for six months and fined on the charges of stealing wood from the land of the Mahant for langar preparation. These Sikh volunteers just wanted to serve meal to the detainees.

As there was no halt at the station ordered by the British, the train was brought to screeching halt but not before mowing down at least 11 Sikhs. Two succumbed to injuries the next day. They were hailed as martyrs and until the Partition in 1947, a three-day religious fair was held in their memory at Panja Sahib from October 30 to November 1 every year.

 

 

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