Call for support to gurdwara corridor
Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, April 28 (2004)
In a move to persuade politicians to take up the issue of the construction of a Kartarpur corridor to link Dera Baba Nanak with Gurdwara Dera Sahib in Pakistan, the Sangat Langha Kartapur, an organisation working for such a corridor, has appealed to the voters in this constituency to vote only for the candidate who declares open support for the project.
The chief sewadar of the organisation, Principal Harjinder Singh Randhawa, has issued an appeal saying since the politicians are not willing to come out openly in support of the corridor, the voters must take the opportunity to get the candidates in the fray to commit themselves to taking up the issue in Parliament. Leaders have not shown interest despite the fact that nearly 10 lakh Indians visit Dera Baba Nanak to have a glimpse of the gurdwara from a distance. It was during Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s Lahore visit in 2000 that Pakistan offered to build a 2 km corridor to enable Indians to visit Gurdwara Dera Sahib without a visa or passport, he points out.
Dera Baba Nanak, the appeal says, is sacred to all religions as three shrines of Guru Nanak exit in the form of an Islamic grave, a Hindu samadh and the Sikhs’ angitha. Nowhere else in the world three shrines of a single person coexist.
Saying that the shrine is universal and does not belong to any one community, Mr Randhawa recalls even Sir Ceril Radcliffe could not divide Kartarpur. When he drew the line between India and Pakistan in 1947, the declaration gave the entire Gurdaspur district to Pakistan, but the plan fell threw and the re-division put Kartarpur on the border