On the day of the inauguration of the Kartarpur corridor between India and Pakistan, a 562-member Indian jatha offered prayers at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur, but the confusion among common citizens about who is eligible for darshan via the corridor seems to be unclear as the corridor gets opened for common pilgrims on Sunday. Pakistan has been conflicting messages on the major problem of logistics and requirements for the pilgrims travelling through the Kartarpur corridor.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan announced last week that the Indian pilgrims coming for the darshan at Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara via Kartarpur corridor will not require passport while travelling to Pakistan and service fee was also exempted. But Pakistan’s Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Major General Asif Ghafoor, said that the Indian pilgrims would require a passport for darshan at Gurudwara via the corridor.
Recently, Sukhwinder Kaur, a sarpanch from a village of Jalandhar, visited with a group of 10 women for darshan via the Kartarpur corridor. No one had the passport as they all believed that Pakistan PM Imran Khan had waived off the passport requirement. As the identity proof, they all were carrying their Aadhaar cards.
They read in the paper that the Aadhaar card can be an identification document. They don’t have passports. Can’t poor people with no passports travel via the corridor for darshan? questioned Sukhwinder. Even two old women in their group have fallen sick.
The same incident happened with another group of Sikhs from Rajasthan, locals from Bhatinda when all of them went without their passports believing Khan’s earlier tweet of no passport requirement and the pilgrims can go with their Aadhaar card’s, driving license and Voter-ID cards.
As per the Indian government, pilgrims will have to return back on the same day via the corridor. They can carry Rs 11,000 cash and a bag weighing not more than 7Kg is allowed. Luckily, they can take their smartphones but not the cameras.