Coronavirus: India suspends travel to Kartarpur, seals border posts in East
The government announced the steps to contain the spread of coronavirus in the country.Updated: Mar 15, 2020 11:07 IST
The government on Sunday announced the suspension of travel and registration for Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan from midnight March 16 till further orders as precautionary measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
Punjab has reported one positive case of coronavirus so far but the state government is worried because more than 300 people who returned from countries hit by coronavirus, are untraceable.
“In wake of the #COVID19india outbreak, as a precautionary measure to contain and control the spread of the disease, the travel and registration for #SriKartarpurSahib is temporarily suspended from 12 am March 16, 2020, till further orders,” the Union home ministry said in a tweet.
The Kartarpur Corridor is a visa-free border crossing and secure corridor, connecting the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib also called Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan to the Indian border in Punjab.
The Kartarpur Corridor became operational on November 9, 2019 to facilitate pilgrims to visit the gurdwara on the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev. The corridor allows Sikh devotees from India to visit the gurdwara in Kartarpur, about 5 km from the border without a visa.
The government also suspended passenger movements through all immigration Land Check Posts at borders with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar.
“All types of passenger movements through all immigration Land Check Posts located at India’s borders with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar suspended Sunday w.e.f. 0000hrs, March 15, 2020 and at India-Pakistan border w.e.f. 0000 hrs, Mar16, 2020,” the home ministry said in another tweet.
The order exempted 20 check posts in eight states - Assam, Bihar, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal. Among them are nine check posts in West Bengal of which seven are on the India-Bangladesh border and one each on the India-Nepal and India-Bhutan borders.
The check posts at Changrabandha, Hilli, Phulbari, Ghojadanga, Haridaspur, Ghede, Chitpur are along the Bangladesh border. The Raniganj check post is on the Nepal border and the one in Jaigaon is on the Bhutanese border.
Among the three check posts exempted in Assam, two are on the Bangladesh border at Mankachar and Sutarkandi and one on the Bhutanese border at Darranga.
Movements at the India-Nepal border in Raxaul in Bihar, Dalu and Dawki in Meghalaya on the India-Bangladesh border, Kawrpuichhuah on the Bangladesh border in Mizoram and Zokhawthar on the Myanmar border in the same state have also been exempted. In Triupra, the check post in the capital Agartala on the Indo-Bangladesh border has been exempted.
Sonouli in Uttar Pradesh and Banbasa in Uttarakhand on the India-Nepal border are also among the check posts named in the government order where the restrictions will not apply.