ISLAMABAD: Hundreds of Sikh pilgrims arrived at Pakistan on Saturday from different countries welcomed the historical opening of Kartarpur Corridor and said Prime Minister Imran Khan has won the hearts of Sikh community across the world by opening this corridor and his name will remain imprinted in their hearts forever.
“Imran Khan has fulfilled the promise of opening Kartarpur Corridor for Sikh community of India which he made a year ago and won their hearts. It was our long-cherished desire to visit this holy place which the prime minister turned into reality”, Sikh Pilgrims said while talking media.
A jubilant Sikh Pilgrim, Sardar Amir Singh said this is a moment of happiness for the nations of Pakistan and India. The Sikh community in India will now be able to visit their holy place in Kartarpur without a passport and visa.
“The Indian nation can also get the maximum benefit out of this project”, Sardar Amir Singh said during his visit to Kartapur Corridor.
Another Sikh Pilgrim, Baba Ge Gopal Singh said “I express my heartfelt gratitude to the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan who has given such a big gift to the Sikh community not only of Pakistan and India but the whole world through opening Kartarpur Corridor on the biggest occasion of 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak”.
The whole world is appreciating this peace gesture of Pakistani government which would allow Sikh pilgrims from India to undertake a visa-free visit to the sacred shrine of Baba Guru Nanak and perform their religious rituals.
Sardar Kalwant Singh said opening of Kartarpur Corridor is a good decision taken by the Pakistani government which has made it easier for our Sikh brothers and sisters to visit their holy places in Pakistan. Now, the Indian government should also facilitate the Sikh pilgrims in Pakistan for visiting their holy places in India by taking some similar steps.
Head of Pakistan Sikh Council, Dr. Ramesh Singh said “Today is the happiest day for the whole Sikh community as well as devoted followers of Baba Guru Nanak across the world. Opening of Kartarpur Corridor conveyed a message to the world that Pakistan is a peace-loving country.”
He appreciated the way different institutions of Pakistan including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Religious Affairs and Inter-Faith Harmony, Evacuee Trust Property Board and others worked hard for the timely completion of this project.
He thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa for making excellent security and other arrangements for the Sikh Pilgrims at the opening ceremony of the corridor and said this initiative has won the hearts of Sikh community of the whole world.
“This was the Pakistan of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah where the rights and freedom of minorities are ensured”, he said.
He said despite false propaganda by Indian media, the banners of Imran Khan and Navjot Singh have been placed in Indian Punjab. The opening of this corridor is a big achievement and nothing else could be a bigger gift for around 120 million members of the Sikh community across the world and followers of Baba Guru Nanak.
Another pilgrim, Balbeer Singh Khushdil said “We are very much thankful to the Pakistani Prime Minister, Imran Khan and his government who has given an opportunity to the Sikh community to visit their holy place on the sacred occasion of Guru Nanak’s birth anniversary. We reached the place without any difficulty”.
Pakistan will emerge as a peace-loving country as a result of this initiative and it will also help reduce the mistrust between Pakistan and India, he said.
Former Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh expressed hope that Pak-India relations will improve enormously as a result of this beginning. It’s a big moment for Sikh community”.
Harvinder Singh Phoolka, a senior advocate of Delhi High Court and politician said “This place is like Makkah for us. We cannot express our happiness and excitement in words. We got permission to visit our holy place without any requirement which is an excellent initiative by Pakistani government for the Sikh community.”
The members of Sikh families from the United Kingdom and Canada said: “We are very much happy over the opening of this corridor and it is a very good peace gesture and we salute to the Prime Minister Imran Khan for this initiative”.