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Pakistan should not fight with its neighbours says Maryam Nawaz quoting her father while addressing Sikhs

Lahore, Apr 18: Chief Minister of Pakistan’s Punjab province Maryam Nawaz on Thursday met a group of Sikh pilgrims, mostly from India, and recalled that her father Nawaz Sharif had said that the country should not fight with its neighbours.

 

Some 2,400 Sikhs from India are currently visiting Pakistan to attend the Baisakhi festivities.

 

Maryam quoted her father and three-time former prime minister Nawaz Sharif as saying, “We should not fight with our neighbours. We need to open our hearts for them,” while addressing the gathering at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur.

 

On Thursday, the Sikh pilgrims reached Kartarpur Sahib to perform rituals at the Samadhi of the first Sikh guru Guru Nanak Dev. Maryam also planned her visit to meet the Sikhs gathered there.

 

Maryam, 50, is considered the political heir of Nawaz Sharif. She was elected as the first woman chief minister in Pakistan in February.

 

Maryam said this is the first time that Baisakhi festival is being celebrated in Pakistan at a government level.

 

“This is my Punjab and we are celebrating all minority festivals like Holi, Easter, and Baisakhi together,” she said.

 

She further said, “We wish to speak Punjabi here like the people of Indian Punjab. My grandfather, Mian Sharif, is from Jati Umra, Amritsar. When a Punjabi Indian brought the earth of Jati Umra, I placed it on his grave,” she said.

 

Maryam said she made Ramesh Singh Arora the first Sikh minister in her government.

 

“My father laid the foundation of Kartarpur Corridor in 2013. He also made a Sikh a member of the Punjab Assembly,” she claimed. She said on the wish of Sikhs, she has ordered the construction of a road at Kartarpur.

 

The corridor was opened in November 2019 by the then prime minister Imran Khan. Maryam tried to take credit for the corridor by saying her father was keen to open it for Indian Sikhs and he took the initiative by making a local Sikh lawmaker.

 

She also hugged an Indian woman who came from Amritsar and exchanged pleasantries. Maryam said she received many congratulatory messages from India’s Punjab after becoming the first woman chief minister of any province in Pakistan.(PTI)

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