Mianwali (Punjab), March 13 (ANI): Hundreds of devotees paid obeisance at the mausoleum of the popular Sufi saint Pir Baba Sheikh Brahm on the India-Pakistan border on the occasion of bi-annual Mela Pir Baba Sheikh Brahm held here on Thursday.
Devotees of all faiths brought their offerings that are customarily offered at this place, located between the Zero Line and barbed wires near Mianwali Uttar village in Khamkaran sector of Punjab. The fair is held in Fagun month (March-April) and Sawan (August-September) as per Hindu calendar and witnesses a large number of Indians and Pakistanis' convergence.
Pir Baba Shiekh is widely believed to have been a disciple of Guru Nanak, the first Guru of Sikhs and thus revered by a large number of people in India and Pakistan.
The BSF personnel duly frisk the Indian devotees before being allowed to enter the shrine through the border fencing gates that remain open to devotees till 5 PM.
While devotees from Pakistan pay obeisance by sending holy offerings through BSF soldiers, as the changed dynamics of India-Pakistan relations has rendered it impossible for them to cross over to Indian territory.
"We request both the governments of India and Pakistan to work on improving their relations. We want that normalcy is restored so that devotees from Pakistan can also come here and offer prayers," said Shamsher Singh Sandhu, caretaker of the shrine.
The BSF jawans help the Pakistani devotees who want to send their offering at the shrine.
"With the changing scenario, we also have to become strict in our ways. We cannot allow the Pakistani nationals to cross over. What we do, is one of our official takes the offerings from them, searches it thoroughly, and then gives them back after offering it to the seer," said Shishpal Singh, a Border Security Force officer.
Legend has it that Guru Nanak Dev visited Sheikh Brahm on his way to Mecca.
Sheikh Brahm was the eleventh successor to Baba Sheikh Farid whose 134 hymns have been incorporated in the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy book of Sikhs.
Today, followers of Sheikh Brahm living in both India and Pakistan make wish at the dargah of holy saint and offer prayers on fulfillment of their wishes. By Ravinder Singh Robin (ANI)