The Punjab Assembly passed a resolution on Friday, suggesting the swapping of land with Pakistan to bring the historic Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara across the border within the Indian territory.
Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, during a discussion on the resolution in the House, demanded that land swap with Pakistan be made a part of the resolution. The House accepted it and passed the resolution unanimously.
Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, MLA from Dera Baba Nanak, from where the corridor is proposed to start, suggested land from his constituency could be handed over to Pakistan in the swap.
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh raises questions against the Pakistan Army and its intention to open the corridor and also for trying to revive terrorism in the state. He warned state political parties of its “ulterior motives”.
Kartarpur corridor: Punjab Assembly passes resolution, suggests land swap with Pakistanhttps://t.co/frTyxqkT3m
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“Do you really think that the Pakistan Army is our sympathiser when it is continuously killing our soldiers at the border with the ultimate aim of destabilising the border state,” he said, referring to the leaders in the assembly and urged them to contribute to maintaining peace in Punjab.
“Why did Pakistan Army chief broke news about the corridor even before the swearing-in ceremony of Imran Khan? What was his interest?” he said.
Singh had also refused to visit Pakistan for the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the Kartarpur Corridor. He said during the discussion that, “I am Sikh and Chief Minister. [As CM] my duty is to safeguard the state,” he said referring to busting of busting of “Pakistani terror modules and arrest of terrorists sent by Pakistan.” This is not done. I will take all the harshest measures. I will not let bloodshed happen again in Punjab,” Amarinder said, pointing out that “35,000 Punjabis were killed in 20-year bloodshed earlier.”
The chief minister, however, said he hopes the corridor would become a “bridge of peace” and reiterated he would accompany the first ‘Jatha’ to Kartarpur next year.
“I want to congratulate the Pakistan prime minister (on the decision to open the corridor). My only request to him is that you are a newly elected prime minister and people have high hopes from him; he should rein in his army,” Singh continued.
“It is a historic resolution and we unanimously support it. But there should not be any negativity. Terrorists do not have religion and they only follow their mission. It is the government of India which will ensure foolproof security,” said SAD chief Badal.
The cabinet resolution read, “This House records its appreciation for the efforts made by the Government of Punjab and Government of India to open Kartarpur Corridor and urges upon the Government of India to hasten completion of works to operationalise the corridor well before the 550th Birth Anniversary Celebrations of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji in November 2019 in keeping with the long pending demand of Punjabis, while ensuring that hard earned peace of Punjab is not disturbed in any manner.”
BJP MLA Som Parkash said in the wake of office of Khalistan in Pakistan and photos of likes of Gopal Singh Chawla with terrorists in Pakistan, “we cannot write off CM’s apprehensions”. He said Pakistan had never been sincere.
The founder of Sikhism is believed to have spent 18 years at the gurdwara and opening a cross-border corridor was a long-pending demand of Sikhs.
India laid the foundation stone of the corridor on November 26 and Pakistan did it two days later.