Manmohan Singh Accepts Punjab CM’s Invite To Visit Kartarpur Sahib In Pakistan
Manmohan Singh, former Prime Minister of India. (Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg)

Manmohan Singh Accepts Punjab CM’s Invite To Visit Kartarpur Sahib In Pakistan

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Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday said that former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has agreed to join the first all-party "jatha" (delegation) to Kartarpur Sahib gurdwara in Pakistan.

This is the first mega event after opening of the Kartarpur Corridor.

In separate meetings, Amarinder Singh also invited President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend the 550th Prakash Purb celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev, including the historic opening of the Kartarpur Corridor.

The Punjab chief minister later told mediapersons that both Kovind and Modi had accepted the state government's invitation to be part of the historic celebrations. The modalities of their visits would be chalked out after the Kartarpur Corridor opening programme was finalised with Pakistan.

An official spokesperson said the details of the events were shared with the president and the prime minister and they were requested by the chief minister to attend the programmes as per their convenience. Amarinder Singh particularly urged them to participate in the opening ceremony for the Kartarpur Corridor at Dera Baba Nanak and the main programme at Sultanpur Lodhi on Nov. 12.

"Former PM Dr. Manmohan Singh accepts Captain Amarinder Singh's invite to join 1st Jatha to Sri Kartarpur Gurdwara on Nov. 9, will also attend Sultanpur Lodhi main event," media adviser to the Punjab chief minister Raveen Thukral said in a tweet.

During his meeting with Prime Minister Modi, Amarinder Singh urged for his personal intervention to facilitate the political clearance for allowing the special all-party "jatha" to visit Nankana Sahib in Pakistan, the birthplace of the first Sikh guru, on the historic occasion.

He requested that a group of 21 people may be allowed to visit Nankana Sahib to organise a "paath" (reading of religious scriptures) on the occasion of the 550th Prakash Purb from Oct. 30 to Nov. 3 and bring a "Nagar Kirtan" to Sultanpur Lodhi via Amritsar (Wagah) later in the day. The "Nagar Kirtan" will arrive at Sultanpur Lodhi in Punjab's Kapurthala district on Nov. 4.

The chief minister has also written to External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, seeking a formal clearance for the Nankana Sahib delegation visit and the "Nagar Kirtan" to be brought from Pakistan to Punjab, according to an official spokesperson.

Giving details of the key events planned by the state government from Nov. 5 to Nov. 15 in connection with the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev, the chief minister said the flag-off ceremony will be preceded by a brief public meeting of devotees at Dera Baba Nanak.

Further, in line with past practice, the Punjab government proposed to organise an all-party meeting from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Nov. 1 at Sultanpur Lodhi, he added.

The complete logistics and security arrangements for this meeting of pilgrims were being made by the state government, Singh told the prime minister and the president, extending a warm invitation on behalf of his government to them to make this a memorable experience for one and all.

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