New Delhi: At the Indo-Pak talks on the Kartarpur Sahib corridor project that will take place at Attari in (Indian) Punjab on Thursday, India is expected to ask Pakistan for visa-free access for Indian Sikh pilgrims to visit the historic Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara close to the border in Pakistani Punjab in November this year for the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism and the first Guru of the Sikhs.
This was made clear by Government sources on Wednesday.
In addition, New Delhi is also expected to make it clear to Islamabad that Indian Sikh pilgrims should not be harassed during the pilgrimage by pro-Khalistan elements in Pakistani Punjab.
Government sources said security considerations (for the pilgrimage) are always a “national concern” and that there would be “no dilution”.
“The (security) arrangements (for the pilgrimage) will be fool-proof and intrusion-free”.
Government sources said India and Pakistan would try to resolve the “mismatch” arising from both sides proposing different border crossing points for the pilgrims.
Both sides are expected to discuss Kartarpur draft agreement and the “alignment” of their respective corridors being built by both sides on their respective territories for the pilgrimage.
New Delhi has also proposed that “a technical level discussion on the alignment of the corridor be held on the same day on the sidelines of this meeting”.
India is already working on creating facilities for the “corridor” on its side from Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur to the International Border with all modern amenities to facilitate movement of upto 5,000 pilgrims daily who will cross over into Pakistani Punjab.