India and Pakistan on Thursday signed an agreement to operationalise the Kartarpur Corridor to allow Indian pilgrims to visit the holy Darbar Sahib in Pakistan.
The signing of agreement took place at the Kartarpur Zero Point at the Pakistan-India border in Narowal.
The corridor will connect the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India’s Punjab with Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur located at Narowal district of Pakistan’s Punjab province.
Both sides are in agreement over issues related to the Kartarpur corridor, except for a $20 service charge Pakistan intends to impose on pilgrims. India has consistently urged Pakistan that in deference to the wishes of the pilgrims, it should not levy $20 fee per pilgrim.
“It is a matter of disappointment that while understanding has been reached on most of the elements for facilitating the visit of pilgrims from India, Pakistan continue to insist on levying a service fee of USD 20 per pilgrim per visit. Government has consistently urged Pakistan that in deference to the wishes of the pilgrims, it should not levy such a fee,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had said in a statement.
The fee was opposed by Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh and Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal.