After declining the invitation sent by Pakistan to attend the foundation stone laying ceremony of Kartarpur corridor, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has now said that opening of Kartarpur corridor is a ‘game plan of the ISI’.
Captain Amarinder Singh speaking to the media has said that Pakistan Army General Qamar Javed Bajwa had revealed the Kartarpur corridor news to Punjab Cabinet Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu even before Imran Khan was sworn in as their Prime Minister, indicating a bigger conspiracy hatched by the Pakistan Army.
“The opening of the Kartarpur Corridor is clearly a game plan of the ISI,” the chief minister said, adding a bigger conspiracy seems to have been hatched by Pakistan Army against India.
He further indicated that Pakistan was attempting to revive militancy in Punjab and thus everyone should be wary of Pakistan’s motives. The Punjab CM went on to say that the Sidhu affair was being unnecessarily hyped and those raising it had clearly failed to see the ISI game plan.
Capt. Amarinder said the demand for the opening of the Kartarpur Sahib corridor had been pending since Partition as several holy Sikh shrines (Sri Nankana Sahib, Sri Panja Sahib, Dera Sahib and Kartarpur Sahib) had been left in Pakistan. Former Prime Ministers Indira Gandhi and Dr Manmohan Singh had also taken up the issue of opening the Kartarpur corridor with Pakistan, he added. Amarinder said he himself had raised the matter with his Pakistan Punjab counterpart Parvez Elahi and with the then President, Parvez Musharraf during his earlier tenure as Punjab Chief Minister.
He said that ISI was trying to foment problems in Punjab by exploiting the religious sentiments of Sikhs. He also said that Pakistan funds and arms Sikhs in USA, Canada and even the UK by exploiting their religious feelings.
On Navjot Singh Sidhu, Capt. Amarinder Singh said he had no problem with Sidhu while running the Government and rejected having friction between the two as reported by the media.
“I and Sidhu are not at loggerheads as reported by the media and I have absolutely no problems with Sidhu while running the Government. Sidhu always speaks in a forthright manner and his only problem is that sometimes he shoots before he thinks,” said a statement released by Punjab Chief Minister Office (CMO).
On November 22, the government of India had announced its intention to build the Indian side of the Kartarpur Corridor and had urged Pakistan to reciprocate by building the corridor on Pakistan side. Harsimrat Badal, along with Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri had officially attended the foundation laying ceremony of Kartarpur corridor in Pakistan.
Navjot Singh Sidhu had eagerly accepted the invitation of the Pakistan government while Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh had declined the invitation sent to him. Amarinder Singh had said that due to continued terrorist attacks in Punjab and horrific killings of Indian soldiers by Pakistan, he will not be attending the event.
Senior Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu had caused a severe controversy after he posed with dreaded Khalistani terrorist Gopal Singh Chawla during his controversial visit to Pakistan to inaugurate the Kartarpur corridor.