Talks on Kartarpur not resumption of dialogue
Despite a dangerous face-off between India and Pakistan after the Pulwama terror attack on February 14 in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed, the latter seems to be over ambitious about the construction of the much-awaited Kartarpur Corridor.
India on Thursday warned Pakistan against the misuse of Kartarpur Corridor by miscreants, "Kartarpur Corridor meeting should not be considered as a signal for the resumption of bilateral dialogue." External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has already said that terror and talks cannot go together.
"We have clearly told Pakistan that no miscreant should be allowed who indulges in any activity which is against the spirit of pilgrims," Joint Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs, Deepak Mittal said in Attari, Amritsar on Thursday.
Mittal said that Pakistan delegation has assured their Indian counterparts that any anti-India activity will not be allowed on its soil. "We hope that this initiative of the Pakistan Prime Minister (Imran Khan)will not only facilitate Sikhs, especially from India, but in the current vitiated situation can be a step forward in the right direction from conflict to cooperation, animosity to peace and enmity to friendship," according to a statement issued by Pakistan on Thursday.
Interestingly, while at one hand, Pakistan is curious about the establishment of a corridor in Kartarpur, on the other it is silent on the issue of opening historical Hindu shrines like Katasrj located in Pakistan. What remains to be seen is whether Pakistan will also initiate the process to open historical Hindu shrines in Pakistan or will limit its religious tourism adventures to Kartarpur or Nankana Sahib only.
Though opening of the Kartarpur Corridor holds a lot of significance for Sikh pilgrims, there are apprehensions that terrorists and the ISI may overshadow the religious spirits.