Kartarpur Corridor Opening Will Bring Peace, Say Pilgrims
"If we let people meet, then the two countries will have better relations.”
After travelling for about three-and-a-half hours from Lahore, I reached the Kartarpur Saheb, where the gurudwara made of white marble was gleaming in the bright sun’s rays.
I was part of a group of journalists who had gone from India to Pakistan to cover the inauguration ceremony of the Kartarpur Corridor.
Meanwhile, the decision of the Supreme Court on the disputed land in Ayodhya had been pronounced about two hours ago. Although all of us were in a no-network zone, we knew that Ayodhya would be the biggest news in India at this time.
However, on seeing the enthusiasm of the devotees who were visiting Kartarpur Sahab and seeing the smiles on their faces, we were slightly pumped up. The faith of people hailing from India, America, Canada, and Europe made us excited.
Enthusiasm in Devotees
Shingar Singh Mann, who has been running a public transport business in France’s Paris for 50 years, started 'Journey for Kartarpur' a month-and-a-half ago. After touring from Canada to Europe, Mann arrived in Pakistan after traveling a distance of 21,000 km. He said:
“The opening of the Kartarpur Corridor is a very big thing for the Sikhs. For the first time after independence, we have been able to offer prayers to our Guru. The government of Pakistan has completely changed the outlook of this deserted land within in a year. People belonging to all the religions are happy with this.”Shingar Singh Mann, Devotee
Meenu Kochhar, who works in California, USA, said:
“We have come here for Nanak ji. Gurudwaras are there in America also, but there is a different kind of feeling attached to Kartarpur Sahib.”Meenu Kochhar, devotee
Hardeep Kaur Bhatti, who came from New York to visit Kartarpur, said:
“I have waited for this moment all my life. My biggest dream has been fulfilled because of Imran Khan and Navjot Sidhu. I am thankful to the Pakistan government for providing such a safe and secure environment.”Hardeep Kaur Bhatti, devotee
Amarjotpal Singh Sandhu, who is doing his doctorate in California, wanted to explore his roots.
“By going to countries like America, we get so occupied in our daily routine that we forget our roots. By coming to such places, we get a better understand of various aspects of Sikhism. I want to know where my roots lie.”Amarjotpal Singh Sandhu, visitor
Harvinderpal Kaur Sandhu, who came with her family from California, said:
“We have come here to experience our culture. Guru Nanak Dev ji had lived here. There are original things here that we want to touch and feel.”Harvinderpal Kaur Sandhu, visitor
Bahadur Singh Mann, who works in the construction sector, left Punjab in 1990 and settled in Canada’s Vancouver. After reaching Kartarpur Sahib, he said:
“There are several gurudwaras, but this is our Mecca and we have come to visit our Mecca. We thank the government for giving us this opportunity.”Bahadur Singh Mann, devotee
Kartarpur Sahab is Special
The Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara which is located in Narowal district of Punjab holds a special significance for Sikhs and several other communities. The first of the ten Sikh gurus Guru Nanak Dev Ji spent approximately the last 18 years of his life here.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Dera Baba Gurudwara in India, and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan at Darbar Sahib Gurudwara in Pakistan, officially inaugurated the Kartarpur Corridor on Saturday, 9 November. From Sunday, the devotees will be able to use this corridor to visit Kartarpur Sahib.
In the Hope of Peace
Although at the inauguration ceremony held on Saturday Pakistan’s prime minister raised the Kashmir issue and tried to deviate from the subject of Kartarpur Corridor, people who came to visit Kartarpur Sahib were of the opinion that the opening of the border is a good beginning for the two countries.
“According to me, it will definitely bring peace, because Baba Nanak believed in the philosophy that we are not nice, and nobody is bad either.”Shingar Singh Mann, visitor
Meenu Kochhar feels that even if the tension does not go away completely, “the process of reducing the same can definitely begin after this move.”
Hardeep Kaur Bhatti has high expectations after the opening of the Kartarpur Corridor.
“This corridor will definitely help in reducing the tension between India and Pakistan. If the Berlin Wall can fall, then why can’t our border be removed. Let people meet each other. Whether it is Pakistan’s Punjab or the one in India, people are the same everywhere.”Hardeep Kaur Bhatti, devotee
On the same subject, Amarjot said:
“We are seeing that the border is opening, which will connect India and Pakistan. The two countries are inviting each other. This will definitely help in reducing stress. If we let people meet, then the two countries will have better relations.”Amarjotpal Singh Sandhu, visitor
Amid these expectations of several pilgrims, Harvinderpal Kaur Sandhu makes an innocent appeal to the politicians and people of the two countries:
“Be happy, believe in God, don’t fight.”
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