A day after declining Pakistan's invite for the Kartarpur Corridor ground-breaking ceremony, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh lashed out at Islamabad for promoting terror activities in the state and killing of Indian soldiers, adding that his minister Navjot Singh Sidhu's decision to visit there was "his way of thinking". Singh also warned Imran Khan-led dispensation of serious consequences if it did not put an end to the violence perpetrated against India.
Reiterating his stand of not going to Pakistan on November 28, the Punjab chief minister said how could he go there when innocent Indian citizens and soldiers were being killed every day.
“Where I thank Prime Minister of Pakistan (for Kartarpur Corridor), I want to say something to his Chief of army staff (Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa). I have been in the army and he (Pakistan army chief) General Bajwa is very junior to me in the service. When we (Capt) were in the army, the country's security was always foremost for us.
"But who teaches in the army that you kill our soldiers at the border? You use sniper to kill our jawans. Have you ever been told that you killed people in Pathankot, Dinanagar (referring to terror attacks at Pathankot airforce base in 2016 and Dinanagar in Gurdaspur in 2015)?” Singh said while addressing a gathering during the laying of the foundation stone for the Kartarpur Sahib corridor at Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur. The function took place at village Mann which lies near the Indo-Pak border with Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and the chief minister laying the foundation stone.
“In Amritsar village, people were offering prayers in the morning and you get a grenade thrown at them. Is it what is taught by the army? It is cowardice," Singh said, adding that "by firing bullets at innocent people and killing them with grenade what they get out of it, they should be ashamed of themselves".
"If they try to foment trouble in Punjab then Bajwa (Pak army chief) should remember that we have Punjabi blood, we will not tolerate it,” said Singh while pointing out that his government after coming to power had busted 17 terror modules and recovered several ammunitions and weapons.
"If such people think of fomenting trouble here and try to weaken our Punjab, then Bajwa should know it that I will protect people of Punjab till the last drop of my blood," he said.
Speaking on Sidhu's decision to go to Pakistan, Singh said it was "his way of thinking" but "the Centre cannot close its eyes to what is happening in India as a result of Pakistan's policy and support to terrorist groups."
(With PTI inputs)