Everyday in our Ardas we pray that we can visit and look after Nankana Sahib and the other Gurdwaras and sacred sites now in Pakistan. And over the last seventy years since partition many of the most famous sites have been refurbished and expanded. However, so many other places have been forgotten and are in a decaying state. Many Sikhs do visit the famous Gurdwaras each year on special occasions and facilities at Nankana Sahib in particular are quite impressive with large accommodation blocks and langar halls, but visiting at other times of the year you will find most of the Gurdwaras eerily quite.
The mere thought of visiting Pakistan evokes different emotions among Sikhs. For some warn that it can be a dangerous place with an unstable government and terrorists looking for their next target, but many Sikhs who have visited always commented on the warmth of the people and the welcome they received.
We are very thankful to the Putohar Association UK and in particular Chanchal Singh Chowdhry who organised the visit. This was more than a visit to Gurdwaras this was a journey of discovery and visiting land of our forefathers. The first part of the journey was to the Potohar region of Panjab and the bustling city of Rawalpindi. Prior to the Partition of India this area was home to many Sikhs, most of whom were engaged in trading or other businesses. We discovered that this region was not ideal for mass farming as much of the rest of Punjab. Much of the terrain in the countryside was made up of hills and rock formations and a famed salt range.