Chandigarh, February 25
Even as he underlined the need for vigilance against Pakistan’s nefarious designs, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday made it clear that regardless of security concerns, the Kartarpur Corridor shall remain open for ‘Khulle Darshan Deedar’ of Gurdwara Darbar Sahib.
In a statement in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, the Chief Minister asserted that “we will not let Kartarpur Corridor be closed down.”
The “Kartarpur Sahib Corridor has been opened because we wanted it to be opened; every Punjabi wanted it, and had prayed for it in daily Ardas every day, along with praying for opening of Nankana Sahib, Panja Sahib and other Gurdwaras,” said Captain Amarinder, urging the governments of India and Pakistan to work for the opening of these Gurdwaras too.
Amarinder, who had requested the Speaker for permission to make his statement before the Question Hour, was responding to the criticism by the opposition of certain recent remarks of the state DGP regarding the threat potential of the Kartarpur Corridor.
Noting “with great concern the statements made by different persons and organizations on DGP’s remarks about security concerns relating to Sri Kartarpur Sahib,” the Chief Minister termed the reactions totally avoidable.
“The DGP had apologized; everybody makes mistakes; even I make mistakes, we are human beings,” said Captain Amarinder, asking if there was anyone from the Opposition who could claim not to have made mistakes. “We all make mistakes, this issue is over now, let us concentrate on peace and on ensuring that the difficult times through which Punjab had been do not recur,” he added. Pointing out that 35000 Punjabis and 1700 policemen had lost their lives, in addition to the Army soldiers, during the years of militancy in the stare, the Chief Minister said “it is our responsibility is to ensure this does not happen again.”
Assuring the people of Punjab, “through this August house, that we are extremely happy that the Corridor has been opened, thanks to our collective efforts,” the Chief Minister declared that it (the Corridor) shall remain open, whatever may be the concerns. “
“My Government was party to the decision to open up the Corridor. The whole of my government, including Ministers and officers of various departments, worked tirelessly day & night, along with the central government, to acquire the land and build the necessary Infrastructure in record time, including security infrastructure, for the launch of the Sri Kartarpur Sahib corridor to coincide with the 550 Years Birthday Celebrations of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji in November 2019,” said Captain Amarinder.
He further recalled: “Personally also, I made numerous trips to review the progress of the Sri Kartarpur Sahib Corridor Project, and my government even held Cabinet meetings in Gurdaspur district to review the pace of work and ensure necessary coordination between various State and central government departments and agencies.”
“What problem ISI has with Taliban, Iran or Balochistan, we don’t know. But what they have been doing in India is known to all. Earlier it was Kashmir, and now even Punjab is their target,” said the Chief Minister.