The Land Ports Authority of India (LPAI), agency that controls operations at the Kartarpur corridor, in a much acclaimed gesture has opened the Integrated Check Post (ICP) for general public from November 11.
This has been done to mark the completion of four years of one of the most hallowed projects of Sikhs. A fee of Rs 50 will have to be paid by devotees desirous of visiting the ICP, which is the last point on the Indian side before the corridor begins. All the formalities, including those pertaining to security, immigration and customs are done here.
Earlier, only those devotees were given entry to the ICP who had valid documents and were on their way to the shrine.
The corridor connects the ICP with Darbar Sahib Gurdwara — final resting place of Guru Nanak Dev — across the International Border.
Yesterday, a religious ceremony was held inside the ICP in which officers of the BSF and the Gurdaspur administration and students took part. BSF DIG Shashank Anand was felicitated by officials of the LPAI on the occasion.
This development has been welcomed by devotees and religious leaders.
The ICP was meant to handle 5,000 devotees per day. However, ever since the project was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2019, barely 100 to 150 people cross over per day.
This “low-traffic” was attributed to the fact that the Indian government had not issued visas to the Sikh pilgrims. Further more, the verification procedure and police verification procedure are so complicated that everyone try to avoid visit Kartarpur Corridor.