Remove Bhindranwale Posters: India Tells Pak on Kartarpur Video
The video has posters of Major General Shabeg Singh and Amrik Singh Khalsa, along with Bhindranwale.
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The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday, 7 November, condemned for showing posters of Khalistani separatist leaders in their promotional video for Kartarpur corridor earlier in the week calling it an attempt to “undermine the spirit” of the pilgrimage.
“Pakistan’s attempt to undermine the spirit under which the pilgrimage is supposed to be undertaken. We have lodged a strong protest. We demand that they remove the objectionable video and printed material which is being circulated.”Raveesh Kumar, MEA Spokesperson
A video released by the Pakistan government on Monday, 4 November, welcoming Sikh pilgrims to Pakistan to visit the Kartarpur Corridor, shows posters of three Khalistani separatist leaders, including Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, in the background.
The video, which was released by Pakistan’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, has posters of Major General Shabeg Singh and Amrik Singh Khalsa, along with Bhindranwale.
All three separatist leaders had been killed during the Indian Army's Operation Blue Star at the Golden Temple in Amritsar in June 1984.
An image of Akal Takht, the supreme Sikh temporal body located in the Golden Temple complex, was also spotted in the poster, according to The Indian Express.
Bhindranwale was the head of Sikh religious sect Damdani Taksal, while Singh was an Indian Army general who joined the Khalistani movement in 1984 after he was stripped of his rank on corruption charges. Khalsa was a Khalistani student leader who headed the All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSD), which is now banned, according to ANI.
‘Had Warned About Pak’s Hidden Agenda’: Amarinder Singh
Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday reiterated his earlier warning about Pakistan having a “hidden agenda” behind Kartarpur opening and said, “All this is what I have been warning about since day one, that Pakistan has a hidden agenda here,” according to ANI.
Earlier, Singh had raised concerns that Pakistan might misuse the Kartarpur Corridor to revive Sikh militancy in Punjab.
Pakistan’s agenda was “nefarious and political, and aimed at exploiting the sentiments of the Sikhs,” he had said.
The Kartarpur Corridor is scheduled to be inaugurated on 9 November.
Over 2,000 Sikh pilgrims from India arrived at Gurdwara Nankana Sahib in Pakistan's Punjab province to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev ahead of the opening of the landmark Kartarpur Corridor this week.
The corridor connects Dera Baba Nanak Sahib in Gurdaspur district of Indian Punjab with the Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara located in Narowal district of Pakistan's Punjab.
(With inputs from ANI and The Indian Express.)
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