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'India will remember forever': Pak minister claims Kartarpur Corridor brainchild of General Bajwa

Dec 01, 2019

The newly-opened Kartarpur Corridor, connecting Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab's Gurdaspur with Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur in Pakistan, is the brainchild of Pak Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and it will hurt India forever,

a top minister in Imran Khan's government has claimed. 

 Kartarpur Corridor was opened on November 9 with Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurating it from Indian side while Imran Khan doing the same on Pakistan side. It was done ahead the 550th birth anniversary of the founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Dev so as to facilitate the visa-free visit of Indian Sikh pilgrims to Kartarpur.

 The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government has claimed that the Kartarpur corridor was the initiative of Imran Khan.

 However, the statement by Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid contradicts Pakistan's assertation that the initiative to open the corridor for the Sikh community was taken by Khan.

 Speaking to reporters on Saturday, Rashid said the corridor was the brainchild of Bajwa and asserted that it will hurt India forever.

 "India will remember forever the kind of wound inflicted on it by Gen Bajwa by opening Kartarpur Corridor," he said.

 "Gen Bajwa strongly hit India by opening the corridor. Through this project, Pakistan has created a new environment of peace and won itself love of the Sikh community," Rashid, who is known for his controversial statements, said.

 Earlier in November,  the event to inaugurate the corridor, Khan had told a gathering of Sikh pilgrims, "I had no idea of the importance this place holds. I found out a year ago. I am happy we could do this for you".

 Security agencies in India have often warned that Pakistan may use the corridor for its nefarious activities. 

 According to a report last month, pilgrims visiting the Darbar Sahib Gurdwara in Pakistan will have to give an undertaking that their visit will not be used for any anti-India activities.

 Sources told Zee Media sources that the visitors would have to give an undertaking confirming that their visit will not be harmful to India's sovereignty.

 The decision came after New Delhi's concern about Pakistani terrorists trying to influence the Indian visitors in Kartarpur.

 Intelligence sources stated that few terrorists have been spotted hiding in the area near the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Pakistan. Following the incident, the Border Security Force (BSF) tightened security near the area.

 Prime Minister Modi inaugurated the Indian side of the corridor on November 9 and flagged off the first 'jatha' of 500 pilgrims who visited the Kartarpur Gurudwara. The first batch of pilgrims included former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal and several other eminent Sikh politicians including MPs and MLAs from Punjab were also part of the first batch.

 India and Pakistan had on October 24 signed the agreement connecting Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab's Gurdaspur with Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur in Pakistan. Kartarpur Gurudwara has a huge significance in Sikhism since Guru Nanak Dev Ji spent the last 18 years of his life in the area where the Gurudwara stands now.

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