Sikh Shrine, Mission Corridor
Mission : Kartarpur Sahib Corridor. Kartarpur Sahib also known as Darbar Sahib is a Gurdwara in Kartarpur (District Narowal) Pakistan, roughly 3 Km. from the International Borders between India and Pakistan. This is one of the Holiest Sikh Shrines and believe to be the final Resting Place of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the founder of Sikh Religion. After the completion of all his Divine journeys Guru Nanak Dev Ji lived in Kartarpur for 18 years until he passed away/Joti Jot in 1539.
When Guru Nanak Dev Ji departed for his heavenly abode, both Hindus and Muslims claimed him as their own and raised Mausoleums in his memory with a common wall between them. The Hindus as per their tradition wanted to carry out a Cremation while Muslims wanted to carry out in Burial. The changing course of floods of Raavi River washed away the Mausoleums. A new Habitation / Holy Shrine was formed Dera Baba Nanak on the left bank of the Raavi River which was built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh
Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara India
Gurudwara Kartarpur Sahib can be seen from another Gurdwara located across the border at the historical town of Dera Baba Nanak in India. Both sides are one of the Holiest Places in Sikhism. Recently there has been lobbying to open the corridor for Sikhs from India to visit the Shrine without any hindrances for Visa.
Kartarpur Sahib Border India
During the partition of India in 1947, the region was divided between India and Pakistan. Holy Shrine Kartarpur Sahib remained in Pakistan and Holy Shrine Dera Baba Nanak, the left bank of Raavi river, District Gurdaspur to Punjab (India). After partition, it is believed that Indian Sikhs would go over to Kartarpur informally, crossing a bridge on the Raavi River which joined Dera Baba Nanak with Kartarpur Sahib. This bridge was eventually destroyed in the Indo-Pakistan war of 1965. However, in November 1974 a protocol was agreed between India and Pakistan for visit Sikh Holy Shrines. However, Kartarpur was not included among the sites including in the 1974 protocol. According to the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, India had requested for its inclusion but it was not agreed by the Pakistan Government.
Mission Kartarpur Sahib Corridor
Mission Kartarpur Sahib Corridor was initially started by Bhabishan Singh Goraya. He has been pursuing the cause for the past 24 years. So the Gurdwara had been abandoned till 2003 since then the Pakistan Government has reported taken initiative for the upkeep of Sikh Religious Shrines.
During the tenure of Prime Ministers Mr. Nawaz Sharif and The Prime Minister of India Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the opening of Kartarpur Sahib border crossing was first discussed in 1998 after further discussions, the Pakistan Govt. renovated the Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib and made it available for viewing from the Indian border. However, it was reported that General Musharraf gave a ‘Green Signal’ for constructing a corridor but in vain according to the Pakistan Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee.
In 2004 Dr. Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India also initiated dialogue process between Government of India and Government of Pakistan access to Kartarpur Sahib via Amritsar-Lahore-Kartarpur road link.
In 2008, the Indian Foreign Minister Mr. Pranab Mukherjee raised dialogue with his Pakistan counterpart Mr. S.M.Qureshi the idea of “visa-free travel” to Kartarpur Sahib. There was apparently no official response, but privately, Pakistan began to express its openness to the Sikh Community. However, even up to 2012, the Indian Government had no response due to stalled diplomatic relations. The stalled relations between the countries were apparently to blame.
On 28 June 2008, the Indian Foreign Minister at that time Mr. Pranab Mukherjee, said that the Indian Government would carry out a feasibility study for the Peace Corridor.
On 30th October 2018, a group of Sikh delegation met the Prime Minister of India, to help in opening the Kartarpur Corridor. In November 2018, Indian Cabinet approved the plan to set up the Corridor and appealed to Pakistan Government to do the same. The Pakistan Foreign Mr. S.M.Qureshi responded by tweeting that Pakistan had “already conveyed to India” that it would open a Corridor but no final decision was taken by the government of Pakistan.
In August, 2018 Tourism Minister of Punjab Mr. Navjot Singh Sidhu attended the Inaugural Ceremony of Mr. Imran Khan, The Prime Minister of Pakistan and he was told by the army chief of Pakistan Mr. Qamar Javed Bajwa, willingness to open the Dera Baba Nanak – Kartarpur Sahib Corridor on the eve of Guru Nanak’s 550th Birth Anniversary. Another resolution called by the chief minister of Punjab Captain Amrinder Singh in the Vidhan Sabha which was passed unanimously in august 2018. Following this, the government of Punjab decided to approach the Prime Minister of India Mr. Narender Modi related to the opening of Kartarpur Sahib Corridor. The Indian government also approved the same.
Inauguration: Kartarpur Sahib Corridor
Commemorating 550th Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev Ji.
On 26 November 2018, Indian Vice President, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu, laid the foundation stone of the Dera Baba Nanak-Kartarpur Sahib Corridor at Mann, a village in the Gurdaspur district of Punjab, India.
In November 2018, the Prime Minister of Pakistan Mr. Imran Khan laid the foundation stone the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor near the Narowal district of Punjab, Pakistan.
Kartarpur Sahib Corridor: Pakistan Govt. to permit Visa-free access to 5000 pilgrims per day.
Pakistan Govt. has agreed to allow visa-free travel of 5000 Sikh Pilgrims per day throughout the year to visit via Kartarpur Corridor to Gurudwara Kartarpur Sahib. The decision was taken after the second round of talks between officials of India and Pakistan at Wagah border on July 14, 2019. The Pilgrims will be allowed to travel either in a group or as individuals. They will also be allowed to go on foot.
Kartarpur Sahib Corridor: Security Concern
The Indian Government raised security concerns about Pakistan-based individuals and organizations who could try to disrupt the pilgrimage. Pakistan government assured the India Government that it would not allow any anti-India activity using the Kartarpur Corridor.
Kartarpur Sahib Distance from Indian Border
Distance from Dera Baba Nanak to Kartarpur Sahib is 6 Kms (approx).