Pakistan's invitation to attend the Kartarpur corridor foundation stone-laying ceremony on the other side of the international border was declined by Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Sunday, as he cited terror attacks in his state and killings of Indian soldiers by Pakistan troops as the reason.
It is a historic occasion, Singh said in a letter to Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, regretting his inability to be present. The chief minister said his reason for declining the invitation was twofold.
"Firstly, not a day passes when Indian soldiers are not killed or wounded on the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir. Rather than moving towards normalcy, these incidents are escalating," he said.
Singh also claimed Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) has started its nefarious activities in Punjab.
"Since March 2017, the state has neutralised 19 ISI-armed and controlled modules, apprehended 81 terrorists and seized 79 weapons, numerous grenades of the HG-84 type made in Pakistan's Ordnance factories with Austrian know how, and some IEDs," the chief minister claimed.
A peaceful religious congregation in Amritsar was attacked few days ago, which claimed lives of 3 and wounded 19, including women and children, Singh said, adding that the terrorists had been caught.
"I hope that the prime minister (of Pak) will understand these circumstances... It will not be possible for me to be present in Pakistan on this historic occasion, despite the fact that paying my respects at Gurdwara Sri Kartarpur Sahib has always been my cherished dream which will hopefully be fulfilled once these hostilities and killings are stopped," he said.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will inaugurate the ground-breaking ceremony of the Kartarpur Corridor, on the Pakistan side, on November 28.