Probably for the first time in over five decades after Haryana was carved out of Punjab, MLAs from both states sat together for an assembly session in Chandigarh today.
A bonhomie was witnessed between them as they warmly greeted each other during the special session held to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev.
Punjab Assembly Speaker Rana K P Singh, at whose invitation the Haryana legislators attended the special session, welcomed the dignitaries. Haryana was carved out of Punjab on November 1, 1966.
The assemblies of the two states are situated in the same complex. Haryana legislators walked up to the Punjab Assembly after their three-day assembly session was adjourned sine die.
Mr Gurbani was being played inside the Punjab Assembly when the Haryana MLAs entered its premises.
Haryana Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala was seated next to former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal while Haryana's senior BJP leader Anil Vij was seen next to Congress leader from the state Kiran Choudhary.
Senior Punjab Congress leader Razia Sultana walked up to women MLAs from Haryana and greeted them.
Just before the start of the session, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Punjab Governor and Chandigarh Administrator V P Singh Badnore, Haryana Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, his Haryana counterpart M L Khattar and Punjab Speaker Rana K P Singh arrived in the assembly together.
Haryana Assembly Speaker Gian Chand Gupta was seated next to Amarinder Singh's wife and Patiala MP Preneet Kaur, while senior Akali leaders Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and Charanjit Singh Atwal were seated behind them.
Haryana's Leader of Opposition Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who had to attend a court hearing in Panchkula, arrived shortly after the session started.
In his address, Speaker Rana K P Singh said "We have the good fortune to celebrate the occasion".
He later touched upon the life and teachings of Guru Nanak Dev. He hoped that the opening of the Kartarpur corridor would pave a way for betterment of ties between the two neighboring nations.
Amarinder Singh gave a call for the protection of nature to save the future generations from devastating effects of environmental pollution.
Recalling the Guru's thought "pavan guru, pani pita, mata dharat mahat" (air is the guru, water the father, and earth the mother), the chief minister underlined the intrinsic bond between nature and mankind.
About the Guru, Amarinder Singh said he sang hymns in the name of humanity and preached ''na koi musalman, na koi Hindu'', that we are all one.
Referring to Punjab and Haryana legislators, Amarinder Singh said, "The love which is seen here today, may last forever."
Before the session began, a few Punjab Congress MLAs came wearing siropas and chanted hymns.