India, Pakistan make progress on "corridor" for Sikh pilgrims

Arturo Kim
November 23, 2018

Although authorities have not set a date to begin the construction, the Pakistan government was hoping to coincide the announcement with the arrival of the Sikh pilgrims celebrating Guru Nanak Jayanti at the Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara in the country.

As part of efforts to celebrate the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev in 2019, Indian missions overseas will be asked to organise special events.

The corridor will provide smooth and easy passage to pilgrims to visit the holy shrine throughout the year.

India on Friday lodged a strong protest with Pakistan that despite having been granted prior travel permission by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, the Consular officials of the High Commission of India in Islamabad were harrased and denied access on November 21 and 22 to Gurudwara Nankana Sahib and Gurudwara Sacha Sauda to meet Indian pilgrims visiting Pakistan under the Bilateral Protocol. The Union Cabinet has chose to develop the historic town of Sultanpur Lodhi as heritage town on Smart City principles. Worldwide seminar on the life and teachings of Shri Guru Nanak Devji to be organised in New Delhi. The first Gurdwara, Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, was built here, where Guru Nanak Dev is said to have died. On the other hand, the government also asked the Pakistani to built the corridor on its territory to recognise the sentiments of the Sikh community.

"Commemorative coin and postage stamps to be released by the Government of India".

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"I humbly request the Government to dispense their duty towards 12 Crore "Nanak Naam Laivas" world over, by writing to the Pakistan Government".

It is pertinent to mention here that Prime Minister Imran Khan will break ground on the Kartarpur facilities on Nov 28. When he returned to India, Sidhu said General Qamar Bajwa had told him Pakistan may open the corridor to Kartarpur.

The project with all modern amenities and facilities will be implemented with the central government funding, announced Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

Union Cabinet Minister and Shiromani Akali Dal leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal wasted no time to take credit for her party "persistent requests" behind the decision.

Amarinder Singh said that he was not against Sidhu's Pakistan visit but the way he hugged Bajwa apeared as if he has forgotten the sacrifices of Indian soldiers. "There is no official communique from Pakistan on this", Badal had said. He said: "It's a historic day for the entire Sikh community and we would like to thank PM Modi and his Cabinet", adding that "this has been a wish of each and every Sikh".

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