Kartarpur Sahib Current Affairs - 2020

Kartarpur visit: Pakistan to issue tourist visas to non-Indian Sikhs

To mark the celebrations of 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev, the Pakistan government will now issue tourist visas to non-Indian Sikhs visiting Kartarpur corridor and other gurdwaras in the country.

Key Highlights

Under the historic Kartarpur Corridor agreement signed between India and Pakistan on 24 October 2019, the pilgrims coming from India for one day would not require visa but they can only visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur, also called Kartarpur Sahib. On 9 November 2019 Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the Indian side of Kartarpur corridor.

The Indian pilgrims will have to obtain a visa for touring other holy sites in Pakistan. However, the pilgrims coming from other countries will need a visa and will be free to visit other religious places.

The Pakistan government will issue tourist visas to non-Indian Sikhs coming from United States America (USA), Europe and Canada for their visit to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur.

Dera Baba Nanak Land Post Designated as Immigration Centre for visiting Kartarpur Sahib

The notification issued by the Union Home ministry has designated Dera Baba Nanak land post located in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district as an authorised immigration checkpoint to exit and enter for visiting Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara in Pakistan.

Kartarpur Sahib Corridor

The Kartarpur Sahib Corridor connects Kartarpur Gurdwara in Pakistan with Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India’s Gurdaspur district. The Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara is located on the banks of the Ravi River, about three-four km from the border in Pakistan.

The proposed corridor was institutionalised to facilitate visa-free movement of Indian Sikh pilgrims between Kartarpur Gurdwara in Pakistan and Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India. The visitors are required to obtain a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib where the Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism, had spent more than 18 years of his life.  Dera Baba Nanak shrine was established in 1522 by Guru Nanak Dev.

As part of the trust-building exercise, the Pakistan new government had proposed to open the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor. Works to facilitate the opening the corridor began with Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu laying the foundation stone at the Indian side November 28 and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan laying the foundation stone at the Pakistani side on November 28.