- PM Modi and President were also invited to the event: Amarinder Singh
- Manmohan Singh will visit the Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara in Pakistan
- Mr Singh visited Dr Singh in Delhi to invite him to join the delegation
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will visit the Kartarpur Sahib Gurudwara in Pakistan for the birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak as part of an all-party group. Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh told reporters that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind had also been invited to the event and both had accepted "the state government's invitation to be a part of the historic celebrations".
According to Raveen Thukral, an aide of Amarinder Singh, Dr Singh accepted the invite to join the first Jatha - or all-party group -- to the Kartarpur Gurudwara on November 9. He will also visit Sultanpur Lodhi for the main celebration of the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak, the first Sikh Guru, on November12.
The jatha will be led by the Chief Minister.
But Amarinder Singh, aka "Captain", clarified that the group would only go to the Kartarpur gurudwara and not for the launch of the Kartarpur corridor. "There is no question of me going (to Pakistan for the Kartarpur corridor opening) and I feel Dr. Manmohan Singh will not go as well," he said.
The Captain visited Dr Singh in Delhi to invite him to join the delegation to the renowned Sikh shrine on the other side of the border.
Dr Singh, who was born in Gah Village in the part of Punjab that is now in Pakistan, never visited the country in his 10 years as Prime Minister. During his tenure, tensions between the neighbours peaked after the 2008 terror attack on Mumbai by 10 Pakistani terrorists.
Last week, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had said his government would invite the former PM to the launch of the Kartarpur corridor, which will facilitate the movement of Indian pilgrims to Darbar Sahib, the final resting place of Guru Nanak.
Dr Singh's office had said he would reject any such invite from Pakistan.
The Kartarpur corridor is being built by India and Pakistan in Pakistan's Kartarpur and connects to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in the Gurdaspur district of Punjab. The corridor aims at facilitating visa-free movement of Indian pilgrims who will just need a permit to visit Kartarpur Sahib located across the Ravi river, about four km from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine.