Updated: January 28, 2022 7:45:32 pm
Days after two brothers separated in 1947 were recently reunited after 74 years at Kartarpur Sahib Corridor, Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi on Friday issued a visa to Sikka Khan to visit his brother, Muhammed Siddique and other family members in Pakistan.
“The story of the two brothers is a powerful illustration of how the historic opening of the visa-free Kartarpur Sahib Corridor in November 2019 by Pakistan is bringing people closer to each other,” the Pakistan High Commission said on Friday.
A frail man in his 70s, Sikka has spent his entire life waiting for the moment when he met his elder brother this sunny Monday at Kartarpur Gurdwara. Now, every day of being apart is tough. “Please give me a visa. I want to go to my brother as soon as possible,” he had told The Indian Express earlier this month.
74 years after the border split the two Punjabs, leaving Sikka and his mother on one side and his elder brother Sadiq Khan and father on the Pakistani side – never to be together again – all it took for the search to end was a video shared on social media. A day after a YouTuber in Pakistan, Nasir Dhillon, uploaded Sadiq’s appeal, he got a call from a rural medical practitioner from Sikka’s village. It took two more years though for the brothers to finally meet, overcoming the paperwork.
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Dhillon runs a YouTube channel called Punjabi Lehar with more than five lakh subscribers in the two Punjabs, focusing on Partition stories, and the shared Punjabi culture and heritage.
Dhillon was passing through village Bogran in Pakistan’s Faisalabad district as part of his work in 2019 when he heard the story of Sadiq, who is in his 80s, about how, in the summer of 1947, he and his father left his maternal home in what would become Indian Punjab, without his younger brother and mother, and found themselves in two different countries.
“Sadiq believed strongly that his brother was still alive and requested me to help him,” says Dhillon. The YouTuber made a video and shared it on social media, asking for information on Sadiq’s family.
Within a day, he was contacted by Jagsir Singh, the rural medical practitioner and dairy owner from Phulewal. He said the man Sadiq was looking for was Habib alias Sikka Khan, who lived in their village.
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