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FO slams India for blocking Sikh pilgrims “entrance into Pakistan”

Pakistan has slammed the Indian government for limiting several Sikh pilgrims from going to the Jorr Mela celebration in Pakistan.

Despite the issuance of visa by the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi, a majority of Sikh pilgrims couldn’t enter the country after Indian authorities stopped them at Attari Railway Station on “technical grounds”.

The foreign office said, referring to India’s refusal to allow pilgrims to visit Pakistan,

“India has no respect for human values.”

Under a convention marked by Pakistan and India, 300 Sikh pilgrims were planned to visit Pakistan to go to the 411th passing commemoration of Guru Arjan Dev Ji, the fifth of the 11 Sikh masters.

The pilgrims wanted to take an interest in the 10-day Jorr Mela held to mark the martyrdom of Arjan Dev Ji, beginning from June 9 in Hassanabdal and different parts of Punjab.

In any case, after India prevented the pilgrims from going to Pakistan, just 16 Yatris landed at the Gurdwara Punja Sahib in Hassanabdal to offer religious ceremonies.

Spokesperson for the Foreign Office Nafees Zakaria said that,

“Minorities are continuously mistreated in India. India also has a ban on visas for Pakistanis seeking medical treatment in India. Pakistan made all arrangements keeping in mind the religious sentiments of Sikhs. We had prepared everything in order to facilitate Sikh pilgrims according to their needs.”

Taking a broader approach, the spokesman went on to mention India’s other alleged atrocities.

Nafees Zakaria added that,

“India is guilty of using Kashmiris in India-held Kashmir as human shields. They [Indian forces] also target innocent citizens near the Line of Control and Working Boundary.”