India- Pakistan makes progress on modalities of Kartarpur Sahib
During the Second formal discussion between India and Pakistan on Kartarpur Sahib, both India and Pakistan have agreed to following modalities for pilgrimage:
- Visa-free travel for the Indian passport-holders and OCI card-holders seven days a week.
- 5,000 pilgrims will be allowed to visit the Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara per day.
- Pilgrims will be allowed to travel as individuals or in groups and also on foot.
During the meeting, India also urged Pakistan to prevent Khalistan supporters from misusing this historic initiative.
India also requested Pakistan to allow ‘Nagar Kirtan’ from Delhi to Nankana Sahib in Pakistan in July and during October-November 2019 as part of the celebrations to mark the birth of the first Sikh Guru.
The Kartarpur Sahib Corridor connects Kartarpur Gurdwara in Pakistan with Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India’s Gurdaspur district. The Kartarpur Sahib Gurdwara is located on the banks of the Ravi River, about three-four km from the border in Pakistan.
Kartarpur Sahib is very significant for Sikhs since it was here the Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism, had spent more than 18 years of his life. Dera Baba Nanak shrine was established in in 1522 by Guru Nanak Dev.
Nagar Kirtan is a Sikh custom involving the processional singing of holy hymns throughout a community. The procession is led by the saffron-robed Panj Piare (the five beloveds of the Guru) and is followed by the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy Sikh scripture. Members of the procession are unshod in deference to the displayed scripture.