New Delhi: Citing the COVID-19 pandemic and threat to the security and safety of Indians travelling to Pakistan, the Government on Wednesday refused to grant permission to 600 Sikh pilgrims intending to visit Gurdwaras in Pakistan.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), in a statement to the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), said that as per the intelligence input, the security situation in Pakistan continues to be adverse and there has been a threat to Indian citizens in that country.
Referring to the Novel Cornoavirus situation prevailing in Pakistan, the MHA said that over five lakh people in Pakistan were affected by the pandemic and 10,000 people lost their lives due to the disease, the MHA officials said, adding that the health infrastructure in Pakistan was not also adequate.
The Ministry, in its statement, also informed the SGPC that both passenger and trade traffic between India and Pakistan have been discontinued since March 2020, due to the pandemic.
The Government has decided not to accord permission to the Jatha comprising 600 pilgrims, which intended to cross over to Pakistan on February 26, 2021, the Home Ministry officials further said.