US welcomes Kartarpur corridor construction

New Delhi/Washington, July 17 : The US has welcomed the construction of the Kartarpur corridor to link two Sikh shrines across the border between India and Pakistan, saying it supports anything that increases people-to-people ties between the two countries.

US State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus, responding to a question on the corridor that is set to open in November for the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism, said "That was certainly a good news report, wasn't it?

"We encourage it.

Anything that increases people-to-people ties between India and Pakistan is something that we're incredibly supportive of," she added.

Both countries are pushing ahead with construction of the corridor that will allow Sikh pilgrims to travel from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district in India's Punjab to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan's Kartarpur.

The Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur is where Guru Nank Dev spent his final days, and is highly revered by Sikhs.

India is building a four-lane highway to the Pakistan border and a state-of-the-art passenger terminal for the pilgrims.

The two sides held the second round of talks on July 14.

Pakistan on Sunday agreed in principle to allow visa-free, year-long travel to the Kartarpur Sahib gurdwara for Indian passport holders and Overseas Citizenship of India (OCI) cardholders.



Source: IANS