In a breakthrough decision by PM Modi, construction of the Kartarpur corridor on the Indian side was given the green signal. In response to the same, Pakistani PM Imran Khan agreed to open the Pakistani side as well. Going a step further the External Affairs Minister of Pakistan, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, even invited his counterpart in India, Mrs. Sushma Swaraj for the groundbreaking ceremony.
Though Sushma Swaraj couldn’t attend the event herself, she allowed two Ministers of Indian Government, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, who heads the Food Processing Industry Ministry, and Hardeep Singh Puri, who is the Minister of State [Independent Charge] of Housing and Urban Affairs, to attend the groundbreaking ceremony at the Kartarpur Sahib in Punjab province of Pakistan.
So after multiple negotiations, the groundbreaking ceremony was officially conducted from 27 – 29 November. However, it couldn’t hide the hypocrisy of the terror state that Pakistan is, as reports of their government officials humiliating and denying members of Indian High Commission an access to the holy Gurudwara of Nankana Sahib emerged within hours.
If that wasn’t enough, Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu embarrassed India once again with his antics across the border. Not only did he defy the policy of his own leader, i.e. the current Punjab CM Captain [retd.] Amarinder Singh, but also he gleefully clicked photos with even dreaded Khalistani sympathizers like Gopal Singh Chawla. Going by Navjot’s excuses, it doesn’t even look like he is ashamed of this gaffe at all.
However, matters came to a head, when in a conference with various dignitaries, including the Pak PM Imran Khan, the Minister of External Affairs, Shah Mahmood Qureshi went overboard in the appreciation of his leader. He even alleged that the decision of Pakistan PM to invite the Indian government was a ‘googly’ that forced two of their government ministers to come down to attend the ceremony.
Unlike Navjot, Harsimrat Kaur did not take this barb lying down, and posted the following tweet: –
Going to Sri Kartarpur Sahib was matter of faith for me. Indulging in one-upmanship on this sacred issue is uncalled for. No one was bowled over by any ‘googly’. PM Modi and ministers have only respected sentiments of Sikhs by authoring and participating in this noble initiative.
— Harsimrat Kaur Badal (@HarsimratBadal_) November 30, 2018
With this tweet, Harsimrat Kaur has not only made her own stance clear, but she has also clarified to those naysayers, who are now accusing PM Modi and the NDA government of being a hypocrite on Indo Pak relations.
In her tweet, she has clearly mentioned that the visit to Kartarpur Sahib was simply a matter of faith. If it was a way to resume dialogue, neither Sushma Swaraj nor Captain Amarinder Singh would have to decline the invitation. The stand on talks with Pakistan as taken by the Indian government as of now is status quo.
This is not surprising, since the Indian Army, which is otherwise extremely vocal on the diplomatic exchange between the two belligerent nations, had themselves no objection with the groundbreaking ceremony, and even suggesting that this ceremony should be viewed in isolation.