Pakistan has said that it looks forward to hosting Sikh devotees on the occasion of Baba Guru Nanak’s birthday celebrations from November 17-26, urging India to allow the pilgrims to make the much-anticipated travel.
In an official statement on Tuesday, Islamabad said it expects New Delhi in the spirit of cooperation would allow pilgrims to travel through the corridor to make it to the temple.
The corridor reopened on June 29 last year under Covid-19 protocols after its temporary closure due to the pandemic on March 16, 2020.
The communique stated that India – despite the resumption of international travel all over the world, the opening of religious places in the country and repeated calls by the Sikh community – is yet to do so.
It reminded the Modi-led government that the corridor was inaugurated by Prime Minister Imran Khan on the eve of the 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak, saying that the magnificent, newly built Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur Complex is a gift by the people of Pakistan and the leadership to the Sikh community in India and worldwide.
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It was described by the United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres as ‘Corridor of Hope’ during his visit to Kartarpur Sahib in February 2020.
The statement further noted that in the last two years, the corridor has not just fulfilled the earnest desire of the Sikh community around the world for easy access to the revered site, but is also reflective of the primacy that Pakistan accords to all religious minorities in the country.
The corridor, it maintained, has opened new vistas for the promotion of inter-faith harmony.
A day earlier, it was reported that thousands of Sikh pilgrims await the reopening of the corridor and are worried about the fast-approaching birth anniversary of the founder of the Sikh faith.
Keeping up with its gesture to facilitate the Sikh pilgrims, Pakistan would allow around 3,000 devotees from across the world to participate in the birthday celebrations.