Sikh Pilgrims Enter Pakistani City for First Time Since Partition

June 13, 2006

Source: SikhNet/BBC News

On June 13, 2006 SikhNet reported, "A large number of devotees accorded a rousing reception to the nagar kirtan (A kirtan in which the entire sangat sings and chants together while walking in a parade like procession) that crossed over to Pakistan from the Wagah Border. This is the first time, after the Partition, that a nagar kirtan was taken out from Harmandir Sahib in Amritsar to Gurdwara Dera Sahib, Lahore, to mark the 400th martyrdom anniversary of Guru Arjan Dev. Guru Arjan Dev was the fifth Sikh Guru of the ten Gurus of Sikhism and the first Sikh martyr. He is highly revered by the Sikhs for the sacrifices he made for his principles and for the Sikh people... Led by 'Panj Pyares', the procession, which started at the Golden Temple on June 12 got a stirring welcome as it entered Pakistan. The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee's 113-member nagar kirtan along with the Guru Granth Sahib also entered Pakistan. About 5,000 pilgrims are expected in Pakistan June 13 for the 400th death anniversary of Guru Arjan Dev. The Gurdwara Dera Sahib, Lahore, is where Guru Arjan Dev was martyred has great importance to millions [of] Sikhs across the world."