No need for passport for Sikh pilgrims from India visiting Kartarpur: Pak PM
Pak PM Imran Khan on Friday announced that Sikh pilgrims from India would only need a valid ID and not a passport to travel to Kartarpur
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday announced that Sikh pilgrims from India would only need a valid ID and not a passport to travel to Kartarpur and are not required to register 10 days in advance to visit the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, in a goodwill gesture ahead of Guru Nanak Dev's 550th birth anniversary.
In a tweet on Friday morning, the prime minister also announced that the pilgrims who arrive on the day of the Kartarpur corridor's opening on November 9 and on the 550th birth anniversary of the Sikh Guru on November 12 will not be charged a fee of USD 20 to visit the holy shrine.
Except for the two days, each pilgrim would be required to pay USD 20 as fee, though India has requested Pakistan not to charge them.
"For Sikhs coming for the pilgrimage to Kartarpur from India, I have waived off two requirements: i) they won't need a passport-just a valid ID; ii)they no longer have to register 10 days in advance. Also, no fee to be charged on the day of inauguration and on Guruji's 550th birthday," Khan tweeted.
The Kartarpur Corridor will connect the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India's Punjab with Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur, just 4 kilometres from the International Border, located at Narowal district of Pakistan's Punjab province.
Notwithstanding a chill in bilateral ties over Kashmir, Pakistan and India after tough negotiations signed a landmark agreement last week to operationalise the historic Kartarpur Corridor to allow Indian Sikh pilgrims to visit the holy Darbar Sahib in Pakistan.
The two countries decided that 5,000 pilgrims can visit the shrine every day and that the additional pilgrims will be allowed on special occasions, subject to capacity expansion of facilities by the Pakistani side.
India and Pakistan have also decided that the corridor will be operational through the year and seven days a week and that pilgrims, except kids and elderly persons, will have a choice to visit it as individuals or in groups.