By Muhmmad Luqman
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has laid the foundation stone for a university named after Baba Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion, ahead of his 550th birth anniversary in November.
The university will be set up in Nankana Sahib district of Punjab province, the birthplace of Baba Guru Nanak, some 75 kilometres from Lahore, the provincial capital.
Plan for the construction of Guru Nanak University in Nankana Sahib was prepared in 2007. But it could not be executed for years for one reason or the other.
آج "بابا گرو نانک یونیورسٹی" کی تعمیر کا باقاعدہ آغاز کیا جا رہا ہے، یہ منصوبہ 5 ارب کی لاگت سے مکمل ہو گا
پنجاب حکومت نے ضلع ننکانہ صاحب میں مذہبی سیاحت کے فروغ اور علاقے کی ترقی کے لیے 7 ارب روپے کے دیگر ترقیاتی منصوبے بھی شروع کروا دئیے ہیں#GuruNanakUniversity
— Usman Buzdar (@UsmanAKBuzdar) October 28, 2019
The development comes just four days after Pakistan and India signed an agreement for the opening of a border crossing for Sikh pilgrims to visit Darbar Sahib Gurdwara in Pakistan’s Narowal district through corridor that will connect it with Dera Baba Nanak, an Indian town across the border.
“Setting up of an educational institution is the best way to pay homage to Baba Guru Nanak because education is the key to nations’ success,” Imran Khan said while addressing the ceremony.
In November last year, Islamabad and New Delhi agreed to open Kartarpur crossing .
Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara, situated in Narowal – about 115km (71 miles) from Lahore – is one of the most revered temples for the Sikh community, as Baba Guru Nanak spent the last 18 years of his life there.
The distance between the Gurdwara and Dera Baba Nanak in Indian district of Gurdaspur is 3km but the closure of the crossing forces Sikh pilgrims from India to travel hundreds of kilometres, via Amritsar and Lahore, to reach the Narowal district , the home to the temple.
Another Guru Nanak Dev University has already been working in Indian city of Amritsar since November 24, 1969.