Pak-India agree to continue talks

80pc of agreement reached, consensus on rest will be reached soon, says FO spokesperson



Following the second round of talks between India and Pakistan regarding the Kartarpur Corridor, Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal Sunday said over 80 per cent have been agreed upon between the two sides.

While speaking to media following the talks, Director General South Asia Dr Faisal said: “In my opinion, around 80 per cent and beyond have been agreed upon.”

The FO spokesperson said that he could not share details until a final agreement was reached.

Dr Faisal added that another round of talks would be held to address the approximately 20 per cent unresolved factors. However, he did not provide any details of the meeting.

Pakistan and India have agreed to expeditiously finalize the modalities for operationalizing the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor in time for the 550th anniversary celebrations.

He said the meeting built up on the discussion from the first meeting held in Atari, India on 14 March this year. Both sides had in-depth and productive discussions on the proposed draft agreement.

The Spokesperson said in line with Prime Minister Khan’s commitment to operationalize the corridor for the 550th anniversary and spirit of constructive engagement, taking into account the sentiments of the sikh community, Pakistan has decided to allow 5000 pilgrims per day (to be increased as capacity allows) throughout the year except for closure on administrative or other basis which will be informed in advance.

He said to further facilitate the Pilgrims, Pakistan is building walkways to permit travel by foot from the start. Pilgrims may travel individually or in groups, preferably of 15 people each.

He said the technical experts of both sides also discussed technical details of the corridor, including the alignment and other details of the proposed corridor.  Pakistan agreed to the Indian request to construct a bridge in the second phase after the 550 anniversary celebrations. The bridge will be constructed in phase 2 due to time constraints with a creek pathway constructed in the interim period.

The Pakistan delegation planted a sapling to commemorate the spirit of cooperation and friendship of Pakistan’s Kartarpur Initiative.

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