Kartarpur Corridor a Huge Security Challenge, Says Punjab DGP

Raising security concerns, Punjab DGP says, some elements ‘trying to woo the pilgrims and making overtures to them’

Updated22 Feb 2020, 04:01 PM IST
India
2 min read

Punjab DGP, Dinkar Gupta, raked up a massive controversy after he called the Kartarpur Corridor “a huge security challenge from terrorism point of view”. He claimed that some elements from the neighbouring country were “trying to woo the pilgrims and making overtures to them”. The police chief made these comments at an Indian Express event in Panchkula.

Raising concerns over Pakistan’s intentions for agreeing to the corridor, Gupta reportedly said,

“Kartarpur offers a potential that you send somebody in the morning as an ordinary chap and by evening he comes back as trained terrorist actually. You are there for six hours, you can be taken to a firing range, you can be taught to make an IED.”
Dinkar Gupta, Punjab DGP as reported by The Indian Express

The corridor was thrown open on 9 November 2019, just days before the 550th anniversary of the birth of Guru Nanak. The corridor takes pilgrims straight to the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur.

“It is a huge concern…that is why it was not opened for all these years. I was in Intelligence Bureau for eight years…I used to handle it over there. The feeling was that it (the Corridor) will be a huge security challenge. But after that as the community wanted it, the disapora wanted it, it was decided why cannot this dream be realised. So all those security concerns were put on the backburner. And we also gave our go ahead,” the DGP said, reported The Indian Express.

Gupta reportedly said that he was in Delhi last week attending a brainstorming session on Kartarpur. Apart from concern over radicalisation of the people who are going over, Gupta said that there was also concern over the ‘phones which are going there’.

‘Deep-Rooted Conspiracy’

The police chief’s comments drew much flak from political quarters. Shiromani Akali Dal’s Bikram Majithia termed it a “deep-rooted conspiracy”.

“Highly unacceptable. DGP furthering Indira Gandhi’s ideology which painted every Sikh as terrorist; it’s a deep-rooted conspiracy.”
Bikram Majithia, Shiromani Akali Dal leader to ANI

AAP leader Harpal Singh Cheema condemned Gupta’s remark.

After the comments sparked controversy, Punjab Public Relations department shared a statement of Punjab DPG Dinkar Gupta with ANI.

“I only red-flagged the obvious ‘potential’ for misuse by elements notorious for their hostility towards India and their effort to exploit every opportunity, even the most pious one, to disturb peace and communal harmony.”
Punjab DPG Dinkar Gupta, in a releasedby Punjab Public Relations departmen

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Published: 22 Feb 2020, 01:22 PM IST
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