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Pakistan team to visit India on March 14 to discuss Kartarpur draft agreement

Kartarpur gurudwara. (Picture courtesy: Pakistan Foreign Ministry) Photograph:( WION )

PTI Islamabad, Pakistan Mar 05, 2019, 09.39 PM (IST)

Pakistan on Tuesday informed India that its delegation will visit New Delhi on March 14 to discuss a draft agreement on the Kartarpur corridor, a positive development that could help ease tensions between the two neighbours.

Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal, who is also the Director General South Asia & SAARC, invited India's acting High Commissioner Gaurav Ahluwalia at the ministry of foreign affairs to convey the decision, according to a statement.

"The Pakistan delegation will visit New Delhi on 14 March 2019, followed by the return visit of the Indian delegation to Islamabad on 28 March 2019, to discuss the draft Agreement on Kartarpur Corridor," the statement said.

Faisal informed the Indian envoy that Pakistan's High Commissioner to India, Sohail Mahmood, will be returning to New Delhi after the completion of consultations in Islamabad.

He also conveyed that Pakistan was committed to continue weekly contact at the Military Operations Directorates level.

The positive development came as Pakistan launched a crackdown against banned outfits including Jaish-e-Mohammed.

JeM chief Masood Azhar's son Hammad Azhar and brother Mufti Abdur Rauf were among 44 members of the banned militant outfits detained by authorities in Pakistan on Tuesday, amid mounting pressure from the global community on Islamabad to rein in the terror groups operating on its soil.

India and Pakistan have agreed to open up a special border crossing linking Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan's Kartarpur - the final resting place of Sikh faith's founder Guru Nanak Dev - to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in India's Gurdaspur district.

Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, the first Gurdwara, was established by Guru Nanak Dev in 1522, where he is said to have died.

The corridor will facilitate the visa-free travel of Indian Sikh pilgrims to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur.

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'The Pakistan delegation will visit New Delhi on 14 March 2019, followed by the return visit of the Indian delegation to Islamabad on 28 March 2019, to discuss the draft Agreement on Kartarpur Corridor,' the statement said.