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715 Sikh pilgrims in Pak to commemorate 469th death anniversary of Guru Nanak

Tue, 01 Jan 2008 ANI

Lahore, Sep 20 (ANI): Approximately 315 Indian pilgrims have already arrived in Pakistan for the 469th death anniversary of Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji, while about 400 pilgrims will reach the Wagha border today by a special train to attend the three day Joti Jot Guruparab.


Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) Deputy Administrator (Shrines) Fraz Abbas said that about 400 pilgrims would reach by special train today.


He said all Sikh pilgrims are scheduled to reach Pakistan by September 20, but half of them had already arrived by the Samjhauta Express.


The commemoration of Guru Nanak's 469th death anniversary will start on September 20 at Gurudwara Darbar Sahib in Kirtarpur.


Sikhs will be in attendance at Guru Nanak's grave on September 22, the Daily Times reported.


According to historians, both Sikhs and Muslims respect Guru Nanak as a religious leader. It is believed that after his death, a controversy cropped up regarding his funeral as the Sikhs wanted to cremate him while the Muslims wanted to give him a burial.


Legend has it that his body was placed in a room while Muslims and Sikhs decided on what to do. It is believed that Guru Nanak's body vanished from the room. Later, Muslims constructed a grave, while Sikhs built a samadhi at the site where Gurdwara Darbar Sahib is located.


According to historians, Nanak heard God's call at the age of 38 and chose to dedicate himself to the service of humanity after bathing in "Vain Nadi" (a small river) near Sultanpur Lodhi.


Anniversary commemorations will begin on September 20 with an Akand Path Sahib (reading from the Guru Granth Sahib) and will end on September 22 with the distribution of sweets amongst pilgrims.


Former president of Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, Sardar Bishon Singh, will receive the Sikhs pilgrims.


Sikh pilgrims are also expected to visit the Gurdwara Sacha Sauda on September 20 and Gurdwara Panja Sahib in Hassanabdal on September 23.


On September 24, Sikhs would return to Gurdwara Dera Sahib in Lahore. All pilgrims would return to India via Wagha Railway Station on September 25.


Guru Nanak was born in 1469 in Talwandi Sabo, a village in Sheikhupura, now known as Nankana Sahib. (ANI)


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