Pakistan has altered demography of PoK: Army chief Bipin Rawat

Thursday, 29 Nov, 2018

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has termed the opening of Kartarpur corridor a "step towards peace", which the region needed.

"The Kartarpur Sahib corridor that is being opened, it needs to be seen in isolation". Imran Khan was bemused about the criticism of the Congress leader before adding that Navjot Singh Sidhu was talking about peace and brotherhood.

India on Wednesday expressed its displeasure over Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan raising the issue of Kashmir in his speech during the ground-breaking ceremony for the development of the Kartarpur Corridor.

In a sharp contrast, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, who jointly inaugurated the Kartarpur Corridor with Naidu, raised the issue of terrorism - allegedly sponsored by Pakistan - and warned Islamabad to "rein in" its army, adding that the Indian army was "fully prepared".

India last week gave the go-ahead to Pakistan's proposal to build Kartarpur corridor to facilitate Sikh pilgrims wishing to visit the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Narowal District near the Indian border.

"Do not link it to anybody else", Gen. Rawat said, responding to questions from presspersons as the foundation stone for the corridor on the Pakistani side was laid on Wednesday by Prime Minister Imran Khan. India's foreign ministry said that Khan's "unwarranted reference to Jammu and Kashmir" on the occasion was deeply regrettable.

If we want to eliminate poverty, we need to open our border and start trade, said PM Khan.

"Bilateral dialogues and Kartarpur corridor are two different things", she said. He compared the situation to that of France and Germany - they fought many wars and there was a lot of bloodshed but their leaders made a decision to move forward. "Just imagine the potential we have if our relationships get stronger. Every time we take one step ahead, we slide two steps behind", he said.

Khan praised Sidhu for his quick wit and affability and once again called for a resolution of issues between both the neighbouring countries.

Imran Khan said that there have been "mistakes on both sides" and asserted that the two sides should not live in the past. Ever since, it's been a major bone of contention in any move to talk peace between the two neighbors. Corridors & Gates are for legal peaceful visitors.

Pakistan Foreign Office Spokesman Mohammad Faisal had said on Tuesday that prime minister Modi will be invited to that country for the SAARC summit.

The prime minister promised the Sikh community that his administration would ensure modern facilities at Kartarpur when they come to celebrate the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Devji next year. Kartarpur is where Baba Guru Nanak settled after his travels as a missionary. "It is not an enthusiasm or a laughter challenge from Sidhu", the minister said. Following their biometric identification and security clearance, they will freely perform their religious rituals in Gurdwara Darbar Sahib and return to their country after the biometric screening.