A heart-warming exchange between an Indian journalist and a Pakistani shuttle-bus driver is winning internet, days after the opening of the historic Kartarpur Sahib corridor between Indian and Pakistan.
On the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the first batch of Indian pilgrims entered Pakistan through the Kartarpur corridor to pay their respects at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, the final resting place of the founder of Sikhism.
The corridor, which was opened on November 9 and links Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab's Gurdaspur to Gurudwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur in Pakistan's Punjab district.
While the corridor marked a new phase of diplomacy between the two neighbouring countries, both Indians and Pakistanis seem to have accepted the move with open arms. Take the case of a Pakistani shuttle driver, for example, who was all praises for the opening of the corridor.
The driver, who goes by the name of Sadam Hussain, was tasked with driving a shuttle vehicle to ferry Indian devotees from the Indo-Pak border to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib. Speaking to Indian journalist Ravinder Singh Robin, Hussain expressed joy at the opening of the corridor and said that it was great that Indian pilgrims can now come to Pakistan to pay respects to their religious guru.
“I don’t think you are as happy as me,” Hussain said when Robin asked him if he was happy by the development. “My eyes have welled up with tears, I am very happy.”
He added that Indians visiting Pakistan on pilgrimage was like Muslims visiting Mecca for Hajj. Hussain, who has previously worked in the Middle East, said that he had a lot of Sikh friends.
A video of the interaction was shared by Robin on his Twitter timeline and it has been going viral since.
"I don't know about you, I am very happy to see you guy here to Visit #GurdwaraDarbarSahib, as like we go for #Hajj. expressed ,Sadam Hassan ,who was given task to drive a shuttle services from Indo Pak Border to #GurdwaraDarbarSahib through #KartarpurCorridor on Saturday. pic.twitter.com/VwW4lNRJ3w— Ravinder Singh Robin ਰਵਿੰਦਰ ਸਿੰਘ راویندرسنگھ روبن (@rsrobin1) November 10, 2019
The video garnered a lot of love from both Indians and Pakistanis on Twitter, many of whom praised the "humble soul" for his warmth. Yet others said that the video brought tears to their eyes.
God bless the simple and humble soul.— Aaadi (Mariner)🚢⚓🇮🇳 (@JustMariner) November 10, 2019
Video vekh Ke merian ve akhaan vich Pani aa gayaa.
Welcome. G Ayaan Noo Sikh Brothers and Sisters 💐— Mola Jatt (@MolaaJatt) November 10, 2019
So genuinely and beautifully said :')— Red Wish 👓 (@RedWishDotCom) November 10, 2019
Ek zubaan, ek khoon, ek virasat... Siyasat alag kar gayi humein.— namita jain (@namitaj68) November 10, 2019
Love His Smile With Pure Innocence that
Tells Oceans About the hospitality.....— Hakim Zaffer (@hakim_zaffer) November 10, 2019
This is what happens when people to people contact. Can't be faked. This Pakistani driver has fond memories of his Sikh friends when he worked in Oman. He remembers the love & extends it in his warm welcome to Sikh yatris. The pleasure on both faces beautiful #KartarpurCorridor— Osama Siddique (@DrOsamaSiddique) November 10, 2019
The first batch of 500 Indian pilgrims was flagged off by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi who said that the corridor will make it easier for Sikh pilgrims to pay obeisance at the their holy site. Meanwhile, Pakiatani PM Imran Khan said on Saturday the the new corridor was testimony to Pakistan's commitment to regional peace.