4 Dec 2018 Pune – After a series of disagreements between two rival nations, India and Pakistan, the ice broke on the talks to peace on Wednesday, 28th November, as Prime Minister Imran Khan performed the ceremony of the long-awaited corridor connecting Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur area of Narowal district to Dera Baba Nanak in India’s Gurdaspur district.
The government’s intentions are aimed at opening the four-kilometre-long visa-free corridor on Baba Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary next year.
A large number of Sikh yatris – both local and Indian – along with Indian Minister for Food Harsimrat Kaur Badal and Minister for Housing Hardeep S. Puri, Indian Punjab Minister of Local Government, Tourism, Cultural Affairs and Museums Navjot Singh Sidhu, and Indian journalists and foreign diplomats attended the ceremony.
In the first phase of the project, set to be completed before Nov 2019, a boarding terminal will be set up near the border. An 800-metre-long bridge will also be built across the River Ravi for this purpose. Moreover, accommodation facilities for 10,000 pilgrims will also be arranged in this phase. In the second phase, a 300-metre track starting from the border will be built for pilgrims carrying special permits, after which a 4.5km road will also be constructed from the border terminal to the gurdwara.
While addressing the audience in the ceremony Mr. Khan said, “I am saying today, that our political leaders, our army, and all other institutions are all on one page. We wish to move forward, we want a civilised relationship. We have just one problem, Kashmir. If man can walk on the moon, what problems are there that we cannot resolve,”
Although the suggestion to hold talks on Jammu and Kashmir issue was not appreciated as India has already made it clear that “Talks and Terror” cannot go hand in hand. Pakistan must fulfil its international obligations and take effective and credible action to stop providing shelter and all kind of support to cross-border terrorism from territories under its control, the MEA said. India also rejected Pakistan’s suggestion to hold a SAARC summit in Islamabad.
Mr. Khan did try to initiate and break the ice on the first and slightly slipped Kashmir issue into the event but was not welcomed by India.
Kartarpur Corridor was welcomed by all hoping that there is peace ahead of it. And it can be seen as a start to a peaceful relationship between India and Pakistan.
The issue of Kashmir still is a hot one but we can always resolve it through talks, condition; Pakistan keeps its condition clear!!