India, Pakistan to hold third round of talks on Kartarpur corridor
Attari, September 4: The third round of discussions between delegates of India and Pakistan will be held here on Wednesday to discuss and finalise the draft agreement for operationalisation of the Kartarpur corridor for Sikh pilgrims.
The joint secretary-level meeting would be held at Attari in Amritsar, officials said.
This will be the second such meeting after New Delhi revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status leading to fresh tensions between the two neighbours.
In the last joint secretary-level meeting held in July at Wagah in Pakistan, it was agreed that 5,000 pilgrims per day would be allowed to visit Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara in Pakistan.
On August 30, the meeting between technical experts of India and Pakistan had taken place.
The corridor will connect Darbar Sahib in Pakistan’s Kartarpur with Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district of Punjab and facilitate visa-free movement of Indian pilgrims, who will have to just obtain a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib, which was established in 1522 by Sikhism founder Guru Nanak.
The corridor will be the first visa-free corridor between the neighbours since Independence. Pakistan is building the corridor from the Indian border to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, the final resting place of Guru Nanak, while the other part from Dera Baba Nanak up to the border will be constructed by India.
In a major initiative last November, both India and Pakistan had agreed to set up the Kartarpur corridor to link the historic Gurdwara Darbar Sahib to Dera Baba Nanak.
Kartarpur Sahib is located in Pakistan’s Narowal district across the Ravi, about four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine.
The four-lane highway connecting the Zero Point of the Kartarpur Corridor up to National Highway-354 is being constructed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI).
The corridor will be opened in November to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak.
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh had on November 26 last year laid the foundation stone of the Kartarpur corridor in Gurdaspur district.
Two days later, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan had laid the foundation stone of the corridor in Narowal, around 125 km from Lahore.