PM Modi interacts with prominent Sikh personalities ahead of Punjab election

Mr Modi tweeted later that the Sikh religious and community leaders were at the forefront of popularising Sikh culture and serving society

New Delhi: Ahead of the Punjab Assembly election to be held on Sunday, February 20, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday hosted some prominent Sikhs from across the country at his residence here. Mr Modi tweeted later that the Sikh religious and community leaders were at the forefront of popularising Sikh culture and serving society.

In a video, shared by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), it was seen that the Sikhs also gave a “kirpan” to the Prime Minister. The PM later also posted a picture of his meeting with Uday Singh, the spiritual leader of the Namdhari sect.

“I was humbled by the kind words from the distinguished members of the Sikh community on various efforts of the Central government. I consider it my honour that the respected Sikh gurus have taken seva from me and their blessings have enabled me to work for society,” the PM tweeted.

BJP leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa told PTI that during his interaction the Prime Minister had said that he wants to work for the community every day and regretted that the previous Congress governments had lost many opportunities to bring the Sikh holy places like Kartarpur Sahib, which is in Pakistan, into Indian territory.

Mr Sirsa said that Sikhs had carried a lot of pain as many commitments made to them had not been fulfilled, but the Narendra Modi government had done “historic” work, including opening the corridor to Kartarpur Sahib and taking the decision to commemorate the martyrdom of Guru Gobind Singh’s sons.

Among those who met Mr Modi were Delhi Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee president Harmeet Singh Kalka, Padma Shri awardee Baba Balbir Singh Sichewal, Mahant Karamjit Singh of Sewapanthi in Yamuna Nagar, Baba Joga Singh of Dera Baba Jang Singh in Karnal and Sant Baba Mejor Singh Waa of Mukhi Dera Baba Tara Singh Waa in Amritsar.

Jathedar Baba Sahib Singh of Kar Seva in Anandpur Sahib, Surinder Singh Namdhari Darbar of Bheni Sahib, Baba Jassa Singh of Shiromani Akali Budha Dal, Harbhajan Singh of the Damdami Taksal and Giani Ranjit Singh, Jathedar, Takht Sri Patna Sahib, also attended the meeting.

After the meeting with the Prime Minister, some of the Sikh leaders lauded his work for the community. Mr Karamjit Singh quoted Mr Modi as saying that “Sikhi” [attributes associated with Sikhs] and service, another quality identified with the community, is “in his blood”.

“That touched our hearts”, he said, lauding the various initiatives of the government for the community, including the removal of GST on langars which are run by gurdwaras.

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