Published: Thu, November 29, 2018
Global Media | By Jackie Banks

Kartarpur corridor is a step towards peace, says COAS

Kartarpur corridor is a step towards peace, says COAS

There will be no dialogue with Pakistan unless it desists from terrorist activities against India, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj declared Wednesday, in a rebuff to Pakistan a day after Islamabad said it would invite Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the SAARC summit.

"If France and Germany can be part of a union and move forward, why can't we?"

They are traveling to Pakistan on an invite from the Pakistan Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi to attend the ground-breaking ceremony of Kartarpur Corridor on November 28.

Khan gave examples from his cricket playing days and said a player used to have a fear of losing while entering the stadium.

He said Pakistan and India can not understand the opportunities God has given to them.

"We need leaders on both sides of the border who resolve to end this problem and I assure you the problem will be solved", he added.

Cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu recited a poem at the gathering calling for peace between the two countries and heaped praise on his "friend" Imran Khan for making a dream come true for the Sikh community.

Sikh pilgrims will board a bus in India, get a special permit to visit Pakistan at the border terminal and be taken to Gurdwara Sahib via special transportation. We want to move forward. "Every time we take one step ahead, we slide two steps behind", he said.

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Owing to India's refusal to attend, Pakistan will not be able to convene the event for the third year now. "This corridor is full of promise, it will bring the two countries close", he said.

"It should not lead to a breakdown of the relationship between India and Pakistan", Raghavan, who is also the author of the book, "The People Next Door: The Curious History of India-Pakistan Relations, said".

India reacted sharply on Wednesday to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan's reference to Kashmir at the Kartarpur Corridor function saying it was "unwarranted" and that he chose to politicise the pious occasion. He was just talking about peace and brotherhood.

He added, the corridor will facilitate the Sikh pilgrims to visit their holiest sites in Pakistan.

During his spech, Khan echoed Sidhu when he said that both countries needed to come together and resolve their issues.

He said Sidhu has such a large fan following in Pakistan, specially in the country's Punjab province, that if he ran in elections here, he would win.

Reiterating PMModi's statement while referring to the Berlin Wall, an emotional Badal said "If the Berlin wall can fall, even the walls between India and Pakistan will fall with this corridor".

Former Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, TCA Raghavan said that "concerns about Khalistanis should not bother us too much". Following their biometric identification and security clearance, they will freely perform their religious rituals in Gurdwara Darbar Sahib and return to their country after the biometric screening.

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