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Shiv Sena says no to Pakistani artistes till peace on border

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Mumbai, Oct 8 : The youth wing of the Shiv Sena on Thursday said it won’t be proper to host shows by Pakistani artistes in India as long as tensions continued on the India-Pakistan borders.

“We are admirers of Pakistani ghazal maestro Ghulam Ali and listen to his music… But we cannot permit his concert here in view of the killings perpetrated by Pakistan-sponsored terrorists on our borders,” Yuva Sena president Aditya Thackeray told the media.

He was speaking on the sidelines of the inaugural of Jain International Trade Organisations Games.

Justifying the Shiv Sena’s opposition to Ghulam Ali concerts scheduled later this week in Maharashtra, Thackeray claimed the move was in support of Indian armed forces that were “grappling terror on the borders”.

“Instead of providing security to Ghulam Ali, it is more important to enhance security for our countrymen and on our borders,” he said, referring to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ assurance on providing full security to the Pakistani maestro in the state.

Thackeray’s reactions came a day after the Shiv Sena’s film wing, Chitrapat Sena, issued threats against the Ghulam Ali concert in Mumbai on Friday and in Pune on Saturday.

The events were planned as part of a tribute to the Indian ghazal singer Jagjit Singh on his fourth death anniversary.

Even as Fadnavis promised adequate security to Ghulam Ali, the event organisers met Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray and decided to cancel Ghulam Ali’s participation in the commemorative programmes.

“The programmes will be held as per the schedule but Ghulam Ali will not participate. This decision was taken at a meeting between event organisers and Uddhav Thackeray,” Chitrapat Sena general secretary Akshay Bardapurkar told IANS after the meeting late Wednesday.

“We respect the art and artistes of Pakistan. However, we are strongly against any form of cultural association with that country since it regularly kills our soldiers and civilians in attacks from across the borders,” said Chitrapat Sena president and Marathi actor Aadesh Bandekar.

He had warned of protests not only in Mumbai and Pune but wherever Ghulam Ali, 75, performed in the country.

In the past, the Shiv Sena had protested against Pakistani singer Atif Aslam’s concert and against Pakistan cricket team playing in India.

On Tuesday, the Shiv Sena, through its mouthpiece ‘Saamana’, urged the central government to attack Pakistan in retaliation to the cross-border attacks on Indian solders and civilians.

(IANS)

Next Story

Pakistan And India To Construct a ‘Peace Corridor’

Indian pilgrims currently must seek visas to enter Pakistan and travel more than 200 kilometers to visit the Kartarpur shrine.

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India Pakistan, Sikh
Indian Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu, third left, stands for the national anthem during the foundation stone-laying ceremony for the planned road corridor to the Pakistan border, at Dera Baba Nanak,. VOA

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan will lay the foundation stone Wednesday for what is dubbed as a cross-border “corridor of peace” to allow religious devotees from India’s minority Sikh community to make free visits to one of their holiest gurdwaras, or temples, on the Pakistani side after more than seven decades.

The temple, known as Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, is considered to be the first temple ever built and the final resting place of Guru Nanak, the Sikhism founder.

Indian leaders, on behalf of the Sikh community, have long been demanding Islamabad provide unrestricted access to the holy site in Kartarpur, in Pakistan’s Punjab province.

India’s and Pakistan’s independence from Britain in 1947 divided the Punjab province, where Sikhism was born.

Imran Khan, Sikh
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan is seen during talks in Beijing, China. VOA

Indian Vice President Venkaiah Naidu performed the groundbreaking Monday on his side of the corridor at a ceremony just two kilometers from the Pakistani border.

The mutually agreed-to project is rare between the two nuclear-armed South Asian rivals. Historically strained ties have deteriorated in recent years and bilateral official talks remain suspended.

The fenced corridor of about five kilometers aims to connect the Kartarpur temple to the Sikh holy shrine at Dara Baba Nanak in India’s Gurdaspur district. Officials say the corridor will be in place for the 550th anniversary of Guru Nanak’s birth in November 2019.

Khan’s government has invited, among others, Indian officials and journalists for Wednesday’s groundbreaking in Kartarpur, three kilometers from the border with India. An Indian ministerial-level delegation is expected to attend the ceremony as special envoys of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Sikh
A Delhi-based Sikh organization Urges UN to Support Turbans as Religious Symbol. Pixabay

“Pakistan calls this a corridor of peace. I call it the corridor of infinite possibilities of peace,” Indian Punjab provincial minister Navjot Singh Sidhu told reporters shortly after arriving in Pakistan for the ceremony. He crossed the border by foot at the Wagah crossing near the eastern Pakistan city of Lahore to attend the event at the invitation of his friend, Prime Minister Khan.

Members of the Sikh community on both sides have welcomed the construction of the cross-border corridor linking the two holy sites.

Indian pilgrims currently must seek visas to enter Pakistan and travel more than 200 kilometers to visit the Kartarpur shrine. The temple is visible on clear days from a viewing stage on the Indian side, where religious devotees gather every day to have a glimpse of it.

Also Read: Vow To Hold Peace Talks With India: Pakistan’s Prime Minster Imran Khan

India and Pakistan have fought three wars, and mutual tensions often hamper pilgrims’ plans to get timely visas to visit the shrine. Two of those wars have been over the disputed Kashmir region, which remains at the center of tensions. (VOA)