Reports suggest that Navjot Singh Sidhu, the Congress leader will likely visit Pakistan to be in attendance for the Kartarpur border corridor ceremony on November 28. Reportedly, Pakistani PM and former cricketer Imran Khan has invited him personally.
"All the formalities related to my visit have been done with. The visa is ready and I am about to submit my passport. I am so happy. I don't have words to express my joy," he told Aaj Tak.
November 2019 will mark the 550th birthday anniversary of Guru Nanak, the first Guru of Sikhs and to mark the occasion, India and Pakistan decided to open their borders for pilgrims to visit the birthplace of Guru Nanak, in Gurdwara Nanakana Sahib in Pakistan.
Sidhu said, "Whatever was lost in 1947 will now get compensated. I am really grateful to the governments of both nations. Especially Imran Khan. He is such a learned man. And sorted. He knows the value of these things."
The issue of Kartarpur Sahib came into focus after Sidhu visited Pakistan in August 2018 to attend the oath-taking ceremony of his cricketer-turned-politician friend Imran Khan as the prime minister of Pakistan.
After his return, Sidhu said that Pakistan Army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa told him that Pakistan might open a corridor to Kartarpur Sahib. "This [the opening of the corridor] will bring the two nations closer. What hadn't been possible in past 75 years has happened in the last three months," Sidhu added.
Imran Khan will lay the foundation stone for the corridor on the Pakistani side on November 28, while on November 26, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and President Ramnath Kovind will do the same on the Indian side.
India had first proposed the Kartarpur Sahib corridor in 1999 when the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee took a bus ride to Lahore.
Even though Sidhu tried justifying his hug with Bajwa saying both were Jats, it did not go down well with his own government in Punjab, particularly Chief Minister Amarinder Singh who slammed him for the act.
(Inputs from indiatoday.in)