‘We will keep a close watch on Pak assurance for security in Kartarpur’: India

‘We will keep a close watch on Pak assurance for security in Kartarpur’: India

Agency News

Attari (Punjab), Jul 14 : India on Sunday asserted that a 'very close watch will be kept on the security issue and assurance given by Pakistan in today's talks for Kartarpur Corridor at Wagah and no let up will be allowed on the same.

At the talks that resumed after being stalled since April, Pakistan delegation led by its Foreign Office spokesperson and DG South Asia Mohammad Faisal assured Indian side that among other things that they will 'act' on the dossier given by India including on the 'ban' imposed on Sikh for Justice, a New York based forum that operates also in Pakistan.

"....We will definitely keep things under close watch and we will follow up on whatever we have said today. There is no let up in this....we will keep a very close watch on how things evolve," said SCL Das, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs and who led the Indian delegation at the talks.

Addressing a press conference at Attari, shortly after their return from parleys in Pakistan, Mr Das said: "It (today's parleys) was a bilateral forum and it was our job to clearly highlight the concerns of our government on security and that we have done in very emphatic terms".

"We have given them detailed information and we have sought confirmation that individuals like Gopal Chawla have indeed been removed bodies where we have objections to," he said. Das said Pakistan delegation assured that they will take note of the material provided and dossier and including the gazette notification on New Delhi imposing ban on SJF on July 10.

".....they will act on it...," Mr Das said to a question on whether India trusts Pakistan on these assurances. "About security concern, we have said earlier also and now I am repeating, it is a matter of paramount concern...There is no possibility of any let up from either side. There is no chance about this...'iska koi sambhavna hae nahi'," Mr Das said.

In the second round of talks on Kartarpur Corridor, Islamabad assured that 'no anti-India' activity would be allowed."Pakistan side assured our delegation that no anti-India activity would be allowed," an MEA statement said giving details of the parleys held between officials of the two sides on the modalities for operationalisation of the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor at Wagah.

"The importance for ensuring safe and secure environment for the pilgrims was underscored. In this context, concerns regarding individuals or organisations based in Pakistan who may try to disrupt the pilgrimage and misuse the opportunity to play with the sentiments of the pilgrims were shared," the statement said. The assurance assumes significance as it comes a day after Pakistan removed pro-Khalistan leader Gopal Singh Chawla from an official Pakistani panel on Saturday, but included a new man Ameer Singh.

The Indian delegation led by S CL Das, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, handed over a 'dossier' to Pakistan side to highlight concerns in the matter. "The Indian delegation has also sought consular presence in Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara to be able to provide assistance to the pilgrims, if required," the statement said.

The corridor will connect Darbar Sahib in Pakistan's Kartarpur with Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district and facilitate visa-free movement of Indian Sikh pilgrims, who will have to obtain a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib, which was established in 1522 by Sikh faith founder Guru Nanak Dev.(UNI)