Pakistan a safe haven for minorities: Rana Ijaz
LAHORE: Punjab Law Minister Rana Ijaz Ahmad Khan on Sunday described Pakistan as a symbol of welfare and protection for South Asian minority communities.
“Our government has always fulfilled its obligation to safe-guard the rights of Pakistan’s minority community,” he added. The minister said this while talking to a delegation of Sikh Yatrees (pilgrims) headed by World Muslim Sikh Federation Chairman Sardar Man Mohan Singh. Punjab Minority Advisory Council General Secretary Jacqueline Tressler was also present.
“Muslims are a most tolerant nation, renowned for respecting and protecting their non-Muslim brethren,” Mr Khan said.
Mr Khan said Pakistan had always welcomed Yatrees with an open heart and the respect, honour and protocol they so richly deserved. “We have provided special funds and facilities to maintain sacred sites for non-Muslims,” he said, adding that Rs 100 million had already been spent on the renovation of Sikh temples, so pilgrims could perform their religious rituals without hassle.
Of this amount, the government has spent Rs 60 million on Gurdwara Janam Asthan in Nankana Sahib, Rs 15 million on Gurdwara Rufi Sahib in Eminabad, and the rest on Gurdawara Bhai Jogs Sindh in Peshawar, Gurdwara Punja Sahib in Hasan Abdal, Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartar Pur in Narowal, Gurdwara Sucha Soda in Farooqabad and Gurdwara Tanboo Sahib in Nankana Sahib.
Ms Tressler later briefed the Sikh delegation about welfare schemes for minorities in the Punjab. —APP