Kartpur corridor opening
Kartarur corridor was formally opened yesterday to allow thousands of Sikh pilgrims to perform their religious rituals in three day celebration on the 550th celebration in Gurudwara Darbar Sahib where the founder of Sikh religion spent last 15 years of his life till his last breath.
Addressing jubilant mammoth gathering of pilgrims, Prime Minister Imran Khan that Kashmir dispute has held in fetters the entire subcontinent and urged Indian Prime Minister Nrendra Modi to come forward for freeing it to enable the people of the two countries live in peace. He said that Prophet of Islam Muhammad Peace be upon him) and prophets who came earlier to him propagated the message peace, love for humanity and mutual coexistence. The resolution of this core issue will open vistas of trade and economic cooperation and bring prosperity for the people who are caught in the vicious circle of poverty over the past 72 years. Let break the shekels of the bitter past and put our people on the path of love, humanity and prosperity. The siege and communication blockade of 8 million India occupied Kashmir has become the biggest human right violation issue. Let us amicably resolve this long outstanding dispute and give justice to Kashmiris. “If Germany and France after fighting battles can bury the past then why not India and Pakistan do the same” the Prime Minister passionately asked the Indian leadership.
The corridor and Gurudura Darbar Sahib Complex was completed by government of Pakistan in a record time of10 months, which may serve an avenue of restoring normal relations between the hitherto arch rivals India and Pakistan. The passage links Norwal district of central Punjab to Dera Baba Nanak in the Gurdaspur Distric of Indian Punjab. The project had been proposed by former Indian Prime Minister Attal Bihari Vajpai during his visit of Pakistan in 1999 but it had remained on the backburner due lack of political will although the process of composite dialogue between the two countries went on till its suspension in November 2008.
It is encouraging that in the atmosphere of tension between India and Pakistan, towering Indian political personalities, celebrities and priests of Sikh religion participated in Kartarpur opening ceremony including former Prime Minister of India Dr. Manmohan Singh, Chief Minister of Indian Punjab Manendar Singh, Congress leader Naojot Singh Sidhu and Bollywood star Sunny Deol.
As a gesture of goodwill and hospitality, Prime Minister Imran Khan waived off the condition of passport, Visa fee of 20 US dollars and pilgrims registration 10 days in advance of arrival. Although the opening of corridor will not have immediate impact on the existing tensed relations between India and Pakistan yet the event may serve confidence building measure for the future. Prime Minister Imran Khan said in a tweet that opening of Kartarpur is reflective of openness of our hearts for the followers of other religions. The historic event of has once again established his brilliant credential of crusader of peace. But it coincided with the decision of Indian Supreme Court verdict by granting 2.7 acre land of Babri Mosque for construction of Ram Temple. The mosque was demolished in 1992 by a violent mob of Hindu extremist Organizations and was led by some BJP top leaders. The verdict symbolizes that secular constitution of India has been hijacked by Xenocentric, Islamphobic, inhumane and unidirectional political minds of BJP to the utter detriment of rights of minorities in India. It confirms the notion that hat for Muslims in India is deeply institutionalized.