PM Modi pays surprise visit to Golden Temple; serves langer
Amritsar: To everyone's surprise, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday visited the 'langar hall' of the Golden Temple and served food there.
He also knelt down and bowed before the Sikh Holy book Guru Granth Sahib. Subsequently, he was honoured with a siropa. He is currently in Amritsar for the 6th Heart of Asia-Istanbul conference.
This is Narendra Modi's first ever visit inside the Golden Temple since taking charge as the Prime Minister of India. It is being speculated that it was an attempt to attract Sikh community in Punjab where assembly elections are due early next year.
He was wearing a woollen cap, abiding by the traditions of Gurudwaras, and also moved around the sarvoar's parikrama, which is about a kilometre-and-half long, in around 10 minutes.
Sikh devotees were surprised to see the PM in the Golden Temple as many of them surrounded him and clicked selfies.
Earlier, he also explored the new-look streets outside Golden Temple that exhibit Sikh history in statutes and 16th century-Nanakshaki bricks.
PM Narendra Modi also gave remarks in the visitors' book which is maintained by the Sikh Gurdwara Parbhandak Committee (SGPC).
He wrote the remarks in Gujarati language which meant "Guru bhoomi ko shat shat pranam".
One of the devotees said, "We are lucky to have our Prime Minister here. It would have been better if the police had told us about the same earlier, so we could have brought our families here."
As police or weapons aren't allowed inside the Golden Temple since 1984, the task force of the SGPC escorted PM Modi by creating a human chain and led him inside the sanctum sanctorum.
He visited the spiritual place along with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani, Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, son and deputy CM Sukhbir Badal and daughter-in-law Harsirmat Kaur Badal.
Click on the next slides to see photos of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Golden Temple: