Pakistanis unable to attend Urs, India expresses disappointment
Posted on May 03 2014 | IANS
New Delhi, May 2 : India Friday expressed disappointment at Pakistani pilgrims not being able to attend the annual Urs of Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti at Ajmer this year, saying the visit of al arge group of pilgrims during the general election would have required much more elaborate arrangements than what is usually done for such events.
External Affairs ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said the visit of a large group of pilgrims during the general election would have required much more elaborate arrangements than what is usually done for such events.
"Regrettably, it was not possible for Pakistani zaireens to attend the annual Urs of Saint Khwaja Moinuddin Hasen Saheb Chisti at Ajmer Sharif (May 1-12) this year," Akbaruddin said here.
"We are most certainly disappointed that this year pilgrims from Pakistan were unable to attend the Urs at what is one of the holiest shrines of our region," he said.
"But this was a measure of abundant precaution, aimed at ensuring safety and welfare of the pilgrims which, I think, should always be our priority," Akbaruddin added.
He said India was in the midst of its national election.
"A visit of such large group of saireens from Pakistan would have required much more elaborate arrangements than what is usually done for such events."
Akbarrudin said all government agencies, including railway authorities, had made full arrangements to transport over 500 pilgrims from Pakistan from Attari railway station to Ajmer and back.
"It is true that this was a last moment decision," he said.
He said India has always cherished age-old cultural and civilisational links that exist across "our borders amongst all countries of our unique sub continent" and will always nurture these links for the benefit of future generations.