Sarna Blasts Indian Agencies for Kartarpur Sahib Propaganda

NEW DELHI—Amid the propaganda being spread by the Indian government, media, and some self-styled Sikh leaders of India against Pakistan over setting up of a body for Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur Sahib, and the corridor, the Shiromani Akali Dal Delhiv(SADD) today stated that vested interests are behind creating confusion over the role of ETPB, PSGPC at Kartarpur Sahib.

According to a notification on November 3, a project management unit (PMU), a self-financing body, for the management and maintenance of Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur, has been constituted under the administrative control of the ETPB. A total of nine officers have been posted under this body and all of them are Muslims.

However, the Indian media has found it as an opportunity to spread the vilification of Pakistan and provoke Sikhs against this country which spent billions of rupees on developing the complex of Kartarpur Sahib and its corridor. It is reporting that the Pakistan government has snatched control of the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) over the shrine, the last resting place of Sikhi’s founder Guru Nanak Sahib.

After the PSGPC and ETPC clarified that the move would leave no impact on the jurisdiction of the PSGPC, the SADD president and former President of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) Parmjit Singh Sarna wrote a letter to ETPB chairman Aamer Ahmed in this regard.

The letter reads, “Greeting from the Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi. On behalf of the Sikh community, we would like to thank you for issuing an ETPB clarification regarding the setting up of a new Project Management Unit (PMU) for the Kartarpur Sahib corridor”.

“The ETPB, in its statement, has clarified that the PMU has been created to look into the day-to-day management and accounts and function as a coordinator with the Evacuee Trust Property Board and the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee”, it reads.

Sarna further said in the letter, “The ETPB is the overall custodian of the Sikh historical shrines across Pakistan and the PSGPC is responsible for conducting religious practices in those shrines. Vested interests have created a lot of confusion over the roles of ETPB, the PSGPC, and the new PMU. We would therefore urge you to have a sizable Sikh representation in the PMU in order to silence opponents of interfaith harmony who have sought to mislead the Sikh community regarding the management of Sri Kartarpur Sahib and the corridor”.

“The SADD suggests nomination of the two most senior office-bearers of the PSGPC—its president and general secretary—or of two members of the Sikh community from elsewhere on the PMU. We hope our suggestion will be given due consideration”, the letter concludes.

In November last year, the two countries threw open a corridor linking Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur in India with Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan, in a historic people-to-people initiative. The shrine is barely 4 km from the India-Pakistan border.


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