Lahore: Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) raised concern over the state of Gurdwaras in Pakistan that are being encroached on by illegal settlers.

The former PSGPC President Bishan Singh for the first time expressed the sentiments of Sikhs the world over on the state of Gurdwaras in Pakistan, naming a few like Gurdwaras built to honour Bhai Mani Singh Ji, Bhai Taru Singh Ji and Gurdwara Khasa (all in Lahore) which have been completely encroached upon by illegal settlers, reported local media.

He also said several petitions filed in this regard are pending with various police stations and the district administration's office.

In a subtle message to the PSGPC and to the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), he expressed concerns that pilgrims have to pay up to Rs 8,000/- for religious tourism which is nearly 2500 per cent more than what was used to be charged during earlier committees.

"This not only makes it harder for pilgrims in Pakistan but they fail short of making the desired charity, making Gurudwaras depend only on government funds," said Singh.

ETPB was established in 1960 with its HQ in Lahore to look after the Evacuee Trust Properties/Land left over by the Sikh/Hindus who migrated to India during partition in 1947-48.

It supervises and controls all Evacuee Trust Land / Property attached to the Charitable, Religious or Educational Trusts or Institutions or any properties which form part of the 'Trust Pool' lease out agricultural land, rents out ET Property, demolishes illegal construction and retrieves ET land/property from unlawful possession.