AMRITSAR SAHIB—A jatha of 40 Sikhs will depart for Bangladesh on April 17 from Sri Amritsar Sahib via train to mark Vaisakhi at the historical Sikh shrine Gurdwara Nanakshahi in Dhaka.
Gurdwara Nanakshahi in Dhaka is one of the seven known Gurdwaras in Bangladesh. It is the most important historic Gurdwara, commemorating the visit of Guru Nanak in 1506-1507.
Speaking to Sikh24, Manager of Jatha S. Harbhjana Singh informed that the Kar Sewa seminary of Sarhali has arranged the pilgrimage for 40 Sikhs. He added that the Sikh pilgrims will have glimpse of various historical Sikh shrines in Bangladesh and will come back April 30.
“We are really excited about being able to visit this important Sikh shrine. While in Dhaka, we will enquire about other historical places visited by Guru Nanak Dev Ji,” he said.
“Some Gurdwaras there are in dire need of repairs. Hopefully as Sikhs start visiting the country, work can start of these shrines,” he added.
Gurdwara Nanakshahi is situated in Neel-Khet, on the Dhaka University Campus (central Dhaka). The locality was earlier know as Sujatpur.
The Sikh community of Bangladesh left the region in the partition of India in 1947. However Bhai Swaran Singh, the lone granthi continued to stay as the sole Sikh in Dhaka. As time passed, the Gurdwara could not be maintained as no Sikhs lived in the region anymore.
In the 1971 Indo-Pak war, Bhai Swaran Singh, along with his Muslim Bengali friends were shot by the Pakistan army. Thereafter no one was left to undertake the minimal care of the Gurdwara. In recent times the Gurdwara has become functional.Sikh24 Editors can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org