In a first, ministers to attend Guru Nanak Jayanti in Kutch today

Amid the ongoing legal tussle between the Gujarat government and Sikh farmers of Kutch district over farmland, two ministers of the state government will attend the annual celebrations of Guru Nanak's birth anniversary celebrations at a gurudwara in Lakhpat taluka of Kutch on Wednesday.

Government officers in Kutch on Tuesday said that Education Minster Bhupendrasinh Chudasama and Minister of State for Law and Justice Pradipsinh Jadeja would take part in the Guru Nanak Jayanti celebrations at Lakhpat Gurudwara. The Sikhs living in Kutch celebrate the Nanak Jayanti a month later after its actual date every year so that those who go to Punjab and other places on the actual date can also participate.

The Lakhpat Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (LGPC) also confirmed that the two ministers would be present. "We had sent invites to Chief Minister Narendra Modi and his Punjab counterpart Parkash Singh Badal to attend the event. But both the CMs have conveyed their inability to attend the event. Instead, Chudasama and Jadeja will represent the Gujarat government, while MP Navjot Singh Sidhu will represent Punjab," Raju Sardar, chairman of LGPC told The Indian Express on Tuesday.

Sardar further said that Gurucharan Singh Gill, president of Rashtriya Sikh Sangat, an organisation of Sikhs, would also attend the function. The chairman added that it would be for the first time that any minister of the state government would participate in the celebrations where around 10 Sikhs from Kutch gather.

The ministers' presence will be significant as the state government had faced criticism from the Sikh community a few months ago over the ongoing dispute of landholding by Sikh farmers in Kutch.

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