Kartarpur Sahib corridor: Sidhu has already accepted Islamabad's invite to attend the ground-breaking ceremony of the corridor.
Congress Minister in Punjab and former Indian cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu has credited Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan for initiating the process for opening the Kartarpur corridor for Sikh pilgrims. Sidhu, who had earlier created controversy by attending the swearing-in ceremony of Imran Khan and embracing Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa during that event, has already accepted Islamabad’s invite to attend the ground-breaking ceremony of the corridor. Sidhu told News 18 that Khan should be given the “real credit” for the project.
Sidhu’s remarks came on the 10th anniversary of the Mumbai 26/11 attack, a day when India remembers those who lost their lives in the ghastly terror strike perpetrated by Pakistan-based terrists. While Sidhu has accepted the invitation, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh declined it. “Going to Pakistan is Sidhu’s wish, I can’t say anything. I only know my responsibility as CM and a Sikh so that is why we wanted the Kartarpur Corridor to happen but also my responsibility is to maintain law and order and that prevents me from going to Pakistan,” Singh said.
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Watch video of Navjot Singh Sidhu
Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan is located across the river Ravi, about four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district. It was established by the Sikh Guru in 1522. The first Gurdwara, Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, was built here, where Guru Nanak Dev is said to have died. Both India and Pakistan have announced that stretches would be developed in their respective areas, linking Dera Baba Nanak in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district with the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan. The decision coincided with the 549th birth anniversary of Sikhism’s founder Guru Nanak Dev on Friday.
In August, Sidhu had come under fire from opposition parties in Punjab after he visited Islamabad and hugged Pakistan Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa during the swearing-in of Imran Khan as prime minister of that country. Sidhu had claimed then that Gen Bajwa had told him about “making efforts to open the Kartarpur corridor”.