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DG ISPR Overrules PM, Says Passport Must For Kartarpur Pilgrims

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Director General Inter-Services Public Relations Major General Asif Ghafoor has said that Indian Sikh pilgrims would require a passport to travel through Kartarpur Corridor.

In a comment to a private TV channel, the DG ISPR stated, “As we have a security link, the entry would be a legal one under a permit on a passport-based identity. There will be no compromise on security or sovereignty.”

Prime Minister Imran Khan had earlier waived off two requirements for the Sikh pilgrims intending to travel to Pakistan for Baba Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary, one of them being the requirement of a passport.

The Kartarpur Corridor is set to be inaugurated on November 9, while Guru Nanak’s 550th birthday anniversary is on November 12. Thousands of Sikhs would be making the pilgrimage to participate in the festivities part of the 550th birth anniversary of their religious founder.

The development has generated a reaction from analysts and journalists, who have commented on the fact that the spokesperson of the military is emphasising a policy that is opposite to that of the prime minister.

Journalist Talat Hussain commented on Twitter that the prime minister was unaware of what the military spokesperson knew.

Journalist Abbas Nasir, with apparent sarcasm, stated while sharing the news that it must be fake as there was no way the prime minister could be overruled by a major general.

Journalist Bilal Farooqi pointed out that whether the passport is required or not is not important as this was a matter of jurisdiction, as the decision should have been made by the interior ministry.

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