Indian Sikh delegation in Pakistan calls for Kartarpur Sahib Corridor

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Amritsar, June 8 (ANI): A Sikh delegation visiting Pakistan on Tuesday called on the Governments of India and Pakistan to resolve their demand for the "Kartarpur Corridor".

Several organizations have been coordinating programs to create a corridor (passport/visa-free passage) between Dera Baba Nanak (on the Indian side) and Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib (about three kilometers from the India-akistan international border in Pakistan's Narowal District).

About 300 Sikh devotees entered Pakistan on Tuesday to observe the martyrdom anniversary of Guru Arjan Dev, the fifth spiritual leader of the Sikh community.

Guru Nanak Dev, the first spiritual leader of the community spent 17 years at a place where Gurdwara Kartarpur is situated. A few years ago, Pakistan allowed Sikhs devotees from India to visit to Gurdwara Kartarpur.

In 1999, Pakistan dictator General Pervez Musharraf committed to providing safe passage to the Sikh pilgrims from India to visit Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib.

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has also shown his interest for building the corridor.

While addressing a gathering in September 2004, the Prime Minister announced that he would take up with Pakistan the issue of the Kartarpur corridor and provision of access to those visiting Nankhana Sahib.

"I fail to understand that when the officials of both countries are principally agreed upon to have corridor at Kartarpur Sahib, why it has not mineralizing it," said Ragubir Singh, the Sikh delegation's leader.

He said that it has been a long pending demand of the Sikhs.

Jasbir Kaur, a devotee from Patiala, said she felt privileged being a part of the delegation going to Pakistan to pay obeisance at historical Sikh shrines, ncluding Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib.

She appealed to both governments to provide safe passage to the Gurdwara Kartarpur from the Indian side, and without any visa, so that more devotees could avail the privilege to pay obeisance at the gurdwara. By Ravinder Singh Robin(ANI)

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