Badal assured PSGPC of relaxation in visa norms

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Chandigarh, May 25 (UNI) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today assured a joint delegation of Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (PSGPC) and International Commission of Human Rights (ICHR), Pakistan, that he would soon take up the issue of relaxation in visa norms with the Ministry of External Affairs.

''We want to enable the people to visit their places of faith besides socialising with their relations settled across both sides of Indo-Pak border,'' Mr Badal said.

An assurance to this effect was given by Mr Badal to the delegation, led by PSGPC President Jathedar Bishan Singh, which called on him at his residence this evening in the presence of Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) president Avtar Singh.

Mr Badal expressed his keen desire that the people of both India and Pakistan should freely and frequently visit to meet their relations besides promoting economic and cultural ties as these countries shared a common rich cultural heritage and legacy.

He said this could only be feasible if the visa restrictions imposed by the governments were further relaxed.

Mr Badal told PSGPC president Jathedar Bishan Singh that he had already approached Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherji and urged them to allow a direct corridor to Gurdwara Nankana Sahib at Kartarpur in Pakistan via Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur District which was hardly 3 km.

The proposed corridor was aimed to facilitate the devotees to pay obeisance at this sacred place related with the founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Dev.


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