Pakistan has 'ulterior motive' in opening Kartarpur corridor: Amarinder Singh

He stressed that Pakistan's move 'indicated an ulterior motive' and Punjab is on heightened alert to check any nefarious design of the neighbouring country.

Published: 04th November 2019 07:51 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th November 2019 07:51 PM   |  A+A-

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh (Photo | PTI)

By PTI

CHATTISGARH: Pakistan's sudden decision to accept the 70-year-old demand to open Kartarpur Corridor is aimed at driving a wedge in the Sikh community by exploiting religious sentiments, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said on Monday.

He stressed that Pakistan's move "indicated an ulterior motive" and Punjab is on heightened alert to check any nefarious design of the neighbouring country.

"The Sikh community had been asking for opening of the passage to the sacred Kartarpur shrine for the past 70 years, but Pakistan's sudden decision to accept the demand indicated an ulterior motive, aimed at driving a wedge in the Sikh community by exploiting their religious sentiments," the chief minister told reporters.

ALSO READ: Imran Khan sends formal invitation to Navjot Singh Sidhu for Kartarpur corridor ceremony

"While we do not expect Pakistan to dare to do any mischief through the Corridor, it is important that, as a border state, Punjab remains on alert," said the chief minister adding that the state was keeping close tabs on the situation and was maintaining heightened alert.

Singh also lashed out at Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), alleging it was "playing into the hands of the Badals" and had refused to support his government's programmes on the historic 550th Prakash Purb celebrations.

"Such major events had always, traditionally, been celebrated under the aegis of the state government, but the SGPC, at the behest of the Akalis, had refused to support the government's programmes this time," said the chief minister.

He said the Akalis have been "rejected" by the Sikh community in every election in the last three years, adding that Harsimrat Badal had barely managed to scrape through in the recent Parliamentary elections.

"The people had seen through their gimmicks and frustrated attempts to exploit religion for petty political gains," he said.

ALSO READ: Vice President Venkaiah Naidu likely to lead first delegation of pilgrims to Kartarpur

"It was unfortunate that the Akalis, under Sukhbir Badal and his wife and union minister Harsimrat Badal, were trying to divide the Sikh community while celebrating the biggest unifier the world had seen in Guru Nanak, who worked for inter-faith harmony and dialogue," he said.

His government had reached out in all possible ways to the SGPC to facilitate joint celebrations, but the religious body was clearly working on the Akali agenda in the matter, the chief minister alleged.

Reacting to SGPC charges of inadequate efforts by the state government to ensure befitting celebrations on the occasion, the chief minister said all preparations have been made to make it a lifetime experience for the pilgrims.

Earlier, Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Rana K P Singh administered oath to the three newly elected legislators Raminder Singh Awla (Jalalabad), Balwinder Singh Dhaliwal (Phagwara) and Indu Bala (Mukerian), who had won in the recent by-elections.

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  • Kanwal jit Singh Gill

    Captain should be ashamed for opposing the Kartarpur corridor. At the same time he is saying that we have been trying to get this corridor opened for 70 years. But now finally when it is opening then he is making low class comments to oppose it. If he is really that much against this corridor then he should stay away from all the celebrations planned for opening of the corridor.
    13 days ago reply
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