Updated: July 27, 2021 12:27:44 pm
The newly appointed Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Navjot Sidhu has received a congratulatory letter from across the border. It is for the first time that Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) has written a special letter to any leader on being appointed a state party chief.
A letter signed by PSGPC president Satwant Singh reads: “PSGPC extends its heartiest congratulations to Navjot Singh Sidhu on assuming responsibilities of the PCC. It is indeed result of your untiring efforts and hard work and you are the best choice for such an important assignment.”
The letter from PSGPC has landed at the time when SGPC president Jagir Kaur has criticised Navjot Sidhu for allegedly using Golden Temple for show of strength while coming to Sikh shrine along with more than half of the Congress MLAs in Punjab for the first time after announcement of his name for the party post.
Sidhu had earlier grabbed headlines for hugging Pakistan Army chief during his travel across the border for the opening of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor. The corridor now lies shut due to Covid-19 outbreak.
In its letter, the PSGPC has also asked Sidhu to push for reopening of the corridor.
“At this historic moment, Pakistani Sikh community is overwhelmed after hearing the news of your appointment as PPCC chief and (has) offered special Ardas at Shri Nankana Sahib, Shri Panja Sahib and Shri Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur for your success and progress. PSGPC would also like to highlight here that Sikh community of the world has lot of hopes that you will play your part in the reopening of the Indian side of the Kartarpur Corridor which is closed since March 2020. PSGPC wishes you good luck for your future career at this moment of honour for entire Sikh community of the world,” reads the letter.
Earlier, PSGPC general secretary Amir Singh, in a video message, had congratulated Sidhu saying the ‘lehnda (West) Punjab’ is equally happy at his new assignment. He too had asked Sidhu to take up the matter of reopening the Kartarpur Corridor from the Indian side. “Like you went to seek the blessings from Golden Temple after becoming Punjab Congress chief, in hope you will come to Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib through the corridor to seek blessings,” Amir Singh had said in the video message.
While opening of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor had made Sidhu popular across the border among the Sikhs in Pakistan, but here BJP, and even CM Amarinder Singh used Sidhu’s camaraderie with Pak PM Imran Khan to attack him politically.
Even when Sidhu took over as PPCC chief Captain Amarinder Singh used the occasion to highlight the threat from Pakistan along the Punjab border.