New Delhi, March 25
Despite India’s insistence, Pakistan continues to charge USD 20 from pilgrims visiting Kartarpur Sahib through the special corridor.
“Representations have been received to make the visit to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur through Sri Kartarpur Sahib Corridor passport-free. However, the bilateral agreement signed between India and Pakistan on October 24, 2019, mandates that pilgrims shall travel on a valid passport,” Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan told Parliament this week.
“The Government of India has consistently urged Pakistan that in deference to the wishes of the pilgrims, it should not levy any fee or charge on the pilgrims visiting…via the corridor. Pakistan, however, continues to levy USD 20 on each pilgrim,” he said in a written reply to a question posed by Lok Sabha MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal, who sought to know if the government planned to make the pilgrimage passport-free.
Muraleedharan said for the convenience of the pilgrims, state-of-the-art infrastructure, including a highway from Dera Baba Nanak to Zero Point and an Integrated Check Post (ICP), had been built on the Indian side. Since its inauguration on November 9, 2019, around 1.7 lakh pilgrims have visited the gurdwara through the corridor.
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