Kartarpur corridor: Punjab Congress leader defends Navjot Sidhu's Pakistan visit, questions MEA

New Delhi: Congress leader Pratap Singh Bajwa on Wednesday defended Punjab Cabinet Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu's visit to Pakistan for the groundbreaking ceremony of the Kartarpur corridor, saying that Sidhu visited Pakistan in his personal capacity and the onus of what he says there lies on him alone.

Speaking to ANI, Bajwa said: "Navjot Singh Sidhu went there on a personal invitation because he is a friend of Imran Khan. He didn't go there in an official capacity as a Minister. This has also been clarified by the Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh. The onus of whatever he says there in his personal capacity lies on him alone."

Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan, and his foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, with India's Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu. Twitter/@PTIofficial

Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan, and his foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, with India's Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu. Twitter/@PTIofficial

Bajwa further said, "Sidhu went there for the second time in three-four months. Who issued him the visa? Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) did. First, you issue him a visa and then you talk about what he did and what he said there. Navjot Singh Sidhu's visit to Pakistan has no link with Punjab government and Congress," Bajwa said.

He also expressed delight over the opening of the historic Kartarpur corridor, calling it a "happy day for the entire Sikh community."

"Today is a very happy day for all Sikh community and for people from different religions, who believe in Guru Nanak Dev Ji. We thank our government, Punjab government and most importantly Pakistan government to felicitate this corridor," the Congress leader said.

He refused to credit any political party for the corridor, saying: "The credit goes to only Guru Nanak Dev Ji. I believe that credit of this happiness goes to Guru Nanak Dev Ji. It has become possible because of his blessings. It is a moment of happiness and we should not ruin this happiness with any political comment or any kind of controversy."

Earlier today, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan performed the groundbreaking ceremony of much-awaited Kartarpur corridor. Several Pakistani dignitaries including Pakistan's Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi were present at the occasion.

The Indian representatives included Minister for Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal and Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri, who crossed the Wagah Border to attend the inauguration ceremony.

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Updated Date: Nov 28, 2018 22:38:27 IST

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