Gurpurab celebrated with religious fervor, the lakhs offer prayers in gurdwaras throughout the country

NEW DELHI/CHANDIGARH: Lakhs of devotees crammed brightly lit gurdwaras across the country on Tuesday to pay tribute to Guru Nanak Dev on his 550th birthday, with the epicenter of celebrations in the sacred city of Sultanpur Lodhi.

Challenging the morning cold, people offered prayers in several shrines and participated in 'langars', 'shabad kirtans' and also took a dip in 'sarovars' (sacred tanks).

The president paid tribute to the historic Gurdwara Ber Sahib in Sultanpur Lodhi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi , The Minister of Interior of the Union, Amit Shah, the president of Congress, Sonia Gandhi, the chief minister of Punjab Amarinder Singh Also extended greetings on the occasion.

Devotees offered prayers in gurdwaras in various places in Punjab, including Sultanpur Lodhi, where Guru Nanak Dev spent 14 years of his life and reached enlightenment, in Kapurthala, where the main festivities were celebrated.

People also packed Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur, Golden Temple in Amritsar, Nada Sahib in Panchkula de Haryana, among other Sikh shrines.

A long line of devotees from different parts of the country could be seen in the Gurdwara Ber Sahib to offer prayers while the festive fervor peaked in Sultanpur Lodhi, where President Kovind paid tribute to the historic Gurdwara Ber Sahib along with his wife Savita

Wearing a suit and a turban, Kovind asked people to follow the path he shows Guru Nanak Develop and work to eliminate social disparities.

He gave mankind 'mantra maha' - 'Naam Japo, Kirat Karo and Wand Chhako' - sing the name of God, do hard and honest work and share the fruits of one's profits with others, said the president . .

In the event organized by the Punjab government in Sultanpur Lodhi, the 'Bhog' (completion) of the 'Sehaj Trail' (full recitation Guru Granth Sahib was performed with intervals).

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) organized a separate event to celebrate the celebrations in Sultanpur Lodhi.

In Haryana, devotees crammed gurdwaras in several places, including Karnal, Ambala and Yamunanagar, while there was a large avalanche of devotees in Sector 34 Gurdwara in Chandigarh, which is the common capital of the two states.

A number of programmes were organised across Delhi on the occasion. Volunteers also set up a free health checkup kiosk and some stalls having spiritual books in the premises of the Guru rdwara Rakab Ganj Sahib.

Extending greetings on the 550th anniversary of the birth of Guru Nanak Dev, Prime Minister Modi said it is a day to fulfill his dream of a just, inclusive and harmonious society.

In a series of tweets on the occasion, Union Interior Minister Shah described Guru Nanak Dev as a unique symbol of the holy tradition of India and said that the Modi government is dedicated to the thoughts and teachings of the founder of Sikhism.

First Guru of the Sikh panthe, the venerable Guru Nanak Dev Ji is a unique symbol of the rich holy tradition of India. His teachings, thoughts and his resolve to serve humanity are an inspiration to us, Shah said.

The president of Congress, Sonia Gandhi, also extended the greeting on the occasion, saying Guru Nanak The teachings of mutual love, truthfulness, brotherhood and righteousness are of eternal relevance and have a universal and timeless appeal that crosses sectarian, communal and regional divisions.

On the occasion, Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh announced that he would take up with Modi the issue of prevailing upon Pakistan to grant Indian devotees open access to more historic gurdwaras across the border.

Several political leaders also visited the Sikh sanctuaries in the national capital.

While Union finance minister and Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia paid tributes at the Bangla Sahib Guru dwara, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, Yoga guru Ramdev and Shiromani Akali Dal MLA Manjinder Singh Sirsa offered prayers in.

Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla and Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari also visited Guru dwara Rakab Ganj.