"This corridor is a Gurupurab gift to us. It took 70 years for us to reach this moment and promises to usher in peace and brotherhood for people of both countries."
Union minister Harsimrat Kaur on Wednesday praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Imran Khan for turning the Kartarpur corridor into a reality.
Speaking at an event shortly after Imran Khan laid the foundation stone for the Kartarpur corridor, Harsimrat - who was part of the ceremony in Pakistan, said that it was a historic moment for not just pilgrims looking to pay homage at the final resting place of Sikh faith's founder Guru Nanak Dev but for ties between the two countries. "This corridor is a Gurupurab gift to us. It took 70 years for us to reach this moment and promises to usher in peace and brotherhood for people of both countries," she said in a voice that betrayed her emotions. "I am here as a devotee and not as a minister. I have no friends or family in Pakistan and never thought I would ever come here but this corridor becoming a reality has brought me here. It will bring millions of my fellow sisters and brothers in the times to come," added the Akali Dal leader, as she thanked both PM Modi and Imran Khan.
Harsimrat is part of a high-level Indian delegation which includes Congress leader and Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, minister for housing HS Puri.
While many have hailed the Kartarpur corridor as a symbol of peace, India has maintained that talks with Pakistan will remain suspended till Islamabad ends its support to terrorism. While Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh had turned down an invite from Pakistan for Wednesday's ceremony, external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said on Wednesday that bilateral dialogue and Kartarpur corridor are two different things.