Muktsar (Punjab) [India], November 5 (ANI): As Pakistan government transferred the management of Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur to Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETBP), a non-Sikh body, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal on Thursday appealed to the Indian government to take up the issue with the neighbouring country.
Badal said it is shocking to know that atrocities against minorities in Pakistan have broken all previous barriers. "I don't think that there could be any bigger example of an atrocity on minority when your right to practise your religion is snatched away from you and given into the hands of those people who consider this holy shrine a project."
The Imran Khan government has transferred the management and maintenance rights of the Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib from Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, a body of the minority Sikh community, to the administrative control of the ETBP, a non-Sikh body.
"Is this what Pakistan is going to stoop to. I strongly appeal to the Prime Minister of India, and external affairs minister to take this up with the Pakistan government and ensure that we are given the right to practise our religion in their country, the way it is allowed across the globe, and that the management of Shi Kartarpur Sahib is handed back to the Sikhs," Badal said.
Badal said the Kartarpur Sahib gurdwara is a historic Sikh shrine where the founder of the faith, Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji, spent 18 long years of his life. "It is revered by people across the globe."
She added it is the first time in the history of any religion that a historic place of worship has been taken away from its management committee and handed over to a project panel, consisting of all non-believers.
"A project management, consisting of all non-Sikhs, are going to run the affairs of that holy shrine. What do they know about maryada (Sikh decorum), about our religious affairs and the way the Sikh religion is practised."
Earlier today, India objected to Pakistan's "unilateral decision" to transfer the management of the Kartarpur Sahib gurdwara to a non-Sikh body, stating that it is highly condemnable and against the religious sentiments of the Sikh community.
In a statement, the Ministry of External Affairs called upon the Pakistan government to reverse its arbitrary decision to deprive the Sikh minority community the right to manage affairs of the Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, the final resting place of Guru Nanak Dev.
The move by Pakistan's government comes days ahead of the first anniversary of the inauguration of the historic Kartarpur Corridor on November 9. The 4-km long corridor links Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur in India to Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan. (ANI)