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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 November 2005, 18:15 GMT
Pakistan lets Sikh pilgrims enter
Sikhs offer prayers outside a gold-plated wooden palanquin carrying the Guru Granth Sahib as it crosses the India-Pakistan joint check post at Wagah
Sikhs say visiting the shrine fulfils a life-long prayer
Nearly 2,000 Sikhs from India have been allowed to cross over into Pakistan to complete a pilgrimage to the birthplace of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism.

The group, chanting religious hymns, entered Pakistan at the Wagah crossing point in Punjab.

The pilgrims were accorded a guard of honour and welcomed by representatives of the Pakistani Sikh community.

It is the first time since partition in 1947 that such a procession of Sikhs has been granted entry by Pakistan.

The group is carrying with them the sacred Sikh religious book, Guru Granth Sahib, in a gold palanquin, placed in a specially constructed carriage.

Devout Sikhs believe the journey is the fulfilment of a life-long prayer.

The pilgrimage will culminate in a special ceremony at Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of Guru Nanak, near Lahore.


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