India, Pakistan in touch over Kartarpur corridor: Indian envoy Ajay Bisaria

Islamabad: India and Pakistan are in touch over the cross-border Kartarpur corridor and New Delhi has appointed a point person for it, Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Ajay Bisaria has said.

Speaking to reporters at an event he hosted on the occasion of India’s Republic Day on Saturday, Bisaria said the Indian government has consented to the basic points about the Kartarpur corridor except for its Zero point.

“Because of general elections in India, the bilateral political contacts might be difficult for now,” Bisaria said, adding that however, building trust was essential before any political dialogue between the two countries, the Express Tribune reported.

He said both the countries were in contact over the Kartarpur corridor. “So many meetings have taken place on this matter,” Bisaria said. He added that a delegation from the Pakistani water commission is to visit India on Sunday.

The Republic Day event was attended by political leaders, parliamentarians, Islamabad-based diplomats and civil society representatives.

Bisaria said that 2019 marked the 550th birth anniversary of Baba Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion, and the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. On the occasion, a short film on Gandhi was also screened.

The ambassador said that Pakistan and India both started their journeys as independent states together. And this year Baba Guru Nanak’s birth anniversary would be celebrated in both the countries.

The Indian government on the eve of Guru Purab on November 22 last year approved construction of the Kartarpur Corridor from Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur district to the India-Pakistan international border.

The Kartarpur route along India-Pakistan border is three kilometres away from Gurdaspur in Punjab. Once functional, the corridor would allow Sikh pilgrims direct access to the historic Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur, Pakistan, where Guru Nanak died in 1539.

On Tuesday, India shared the coordinates of the Zero point (crossing point) of the corridor along the International border with Pakistan.

India has also proposed two sets of dates i.e. February 26 and March 7 for the visit of a Pakistani delegation to New Delhi to discuss and finalise the modalities.

Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh has said that India is trying to complete its part of the Kartarpur Corridor work before Pakistan.