Published: Fri, November 23, 2018
Worldwide | By Angelina Lucas

Imran Khan invites Navjot Sidhu for Kartarpur Sahib corridor ceremony

Imran Khan invites Navjot Sidhu for Kartarpur Sahib corridor ceremony

The government expressed grave concern that this is the third consecutive visit in which Indian officials have not been allowed to meet Sikh pilgrims visiting Pakistan "on the pretext of security". "It will build bridges, burn animosity and will act like a soothing balm for two neighbouring countries", Sidhu said in a tweet.

Mr. Sidhu, who had in August visited Pakistan to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Prime Minister Imran Khan, had after his return claimed that during the ceremony Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa had conveyed that Pakistan was contemplating to open Kartarpur border on Guru Nanak Dev's 550th Prakash Parv. Worldwide seminar on the life and teachings of Shri Guru Nanak Devji to be organised in New Delhi. The finance minister said the Centre will also request UNESCO to publish Guru Nanak's writings in world languages.

His tweet came on the heels of Indian government's endorsement of Pakistan's offer to open Kartarpur border to facilitate Sikh pilgrims travelling to Pakistan. "Doordarshan to telecast programmes on Shri Guru Nanak Devji and Gurubani", Singh said further.

The Union Cabinet Thursday cleared a proposal for building and developing the Kartarpur corridor to provide easy passage to Sikh pilgrims to the historic gurdwara in Pakistan.

"I do hope that the Centre government is honest in its intent and genuinely seeks to work towards the opening and development of the corridor which is of enormous importance to the Sikh community across the world", said Mr. Bajwa.

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Sidhu had previously raised the issue with the Minister of External Affairs of India Sushma Swaraj and had said that it was India's responsibility to make a formal request to Pakistan, NDTV reported.

Prime Minister Imran Khan will lay the foundation stone for the corridor on the Pakistani side on November 28, while on November 26, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and President Ramnath Kovind will do the same on the Indian side.

Even though Pakistan, on 19 September, had claimed that there was no formal communication with India regarding the construction of the Kartarpur Corridor, The Express Tribune reported that Pakistan has chose to begin the project later this month.

Indian government sources said the Cabinet passed the resolution after many weeks of consultations. Islamabad had earlier this week approved visas for 3,800 Sikh pilgrims who wanted to visit religious shrines in Pakistan on the occasion of Guru Nanak's birthday.

"A centre for inter faith studies to be set up at Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar".

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