ISLAMABAD - Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood yesterday briefed the diplomatic corps regarding Pakistan’s initiative of opening the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor.

The Heads of Mission and representatives from Islamabad-based diplomatic missions attended in large number. Prime Minister Imran Khan will inaugurate the Corridor on November 9, said a foreign ministry statement.

While highlighting the historic initiative by Prime Minister Imran Khan to open the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor on the auspicious occasion of 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak, the Foreign Secretary underscored that Pakistan has taken this step to meet the long-standing request of Nanak NaamLevas and especially the Sikh community across the world, particularly from India.

Opening of the Corridor is in line with the Islamic principles, Pakistan’s policy of promoting inter-faith harmony, and Quaid-e-Azam’s vision of a peaceful neighbourhood, he said. The Foreign Secretary underscored that Pakistan will permit 5,000 Indian pilgrims of all faiths without visa, per day, seven days a week, throughout the year, with the provision for additional numbers on special occasions, subject to capacity.

FS briefs diplomatic corps on corridor

He added that as a part of series of activities to celebrate the 550thbirth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak, the Government of Pakistan is issuing a special coin and a commemorative stamp. Moreover, the Prime Minister of Pakistan has laid the foundation stone of Baba Guru Nanak University at Nankana Sahib.

The Foreign Secretary stated that besides the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor, pilgrims from India would be coming through Wagah border as well. Similarly, thousands of pilgrims from across the world, especially from countries with large Sikh community, are coming to Pakistan.

The Foreign Secretary underlined that the first phase of the construction of Kartarpur Sahib Corridor project and renovation of Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur, which has now become the world’s largest Sikh Gurdwara, has been completed in record time.

While appreciating the interest of the diplomatic corps to attend the inauguration ceremony on 9 November 2019, the Foreign Secretary informed about the arrangements made for their facilitation. The members of the diplomatic corps in Islamabad had also attended the ground-breaking ceremony of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor on 28 November 2018.

Appreciating Pakistan’s historic initiative to open the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor and completion of the huge project in record time, the diplomats congratulated Pakistan and thanked for the arrangements being made for their facilitation.