Pakistan on Sunday rejected the “malicious Indian propaganda” regarding the alleged use of the Kartarpur Corridor for business meetings, saying “it is a deliberate smear campaign seeking to undermine Pakistan’s historic initiative of opening the corridor for Sikh pilgrims from India and around the world”.
The response from the Foreign Office comes following reports published in the Indian media claimed that Pakistan’s officials were “using the Kartarpur corridor to meet and cultivate contacts among Indians going on the pilgrimage”.
The statement said that there was nothing “new about India’s desperate bid to malign the ‘Corridor of Peace’ and divert the world’s attention away from the grave injustices being done to its own minorities, especially Muslims, who are being targeted with impunity by Hindu zealots in utter disregard of all tenets of law and justice”.
“Sanctity of religious places and revered sites of every community is ensured in Pakistan,” the FO Said.
It further said that the country hosted over 2,000 Sikh pilgrims from India recently, who came to participate in the annual Baisakhi festival.
“Elaborate arrangements were put in place to facilitate the visiting pilgrims to pay homage at their holy religious sites. The Sikh community around the world has remained appreciative of Pakistan’s commitment to inclusivity, diversity and promotion of religious harmony,” the statement added.
The FO advised India to desist from casting fallacious aspersions on the Kartarpur Corridor which was a gift by the Government of Pakistan to the Sikh community, and instead focus on taking meaningful steps to effectively protect its own religious minorities and ensure the safety of their lives and places of worship.