Akal Takht says no to joint celebrations; Main program to be held on SGPC sponsored stage on November 12

CHANDIGARH, Punjab—To deliberate upon the Punjab government’s proposal for collaborative celebrations of the main program of the 550th birthday of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the SGPC appointed Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh underwent meeting with other Singh Sahibans on October 21.

Interacting with the media after meeting, Giani Harpreet Singh announced that the main program of the 550th birthday celebrations will be held by the apex Sikh body SGPC alone.

It may be recalled here that the Punjab government had proposed Akal Takht Jathedar to hold the main program at Sultanpur Lodhi on November 12 under the patronage of Sri Akal Takht Sahib so that the wastage of Rs. 150 million could be avoided as the Punjab government has already setup a stage there.

While expressing apprehensions of misusage of the stage if the main program is held on government sponsored stage, Giani Harpreet Singh said that the stage would be presided over by five high priests under the leadership of Akal Takht Jathedar, who would also deliver customary message to the Sikh community. “Besides religious personalities, the stage would be reserved only for dignitaries, including President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh and former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Bada,” he added.

Giani Harpreet Singh also issued a warning to refrain from giving any political color to this historic occasion and the stages must only be used for propagating the philosophy and teachings of Guru Nanak Sahib.

It is noteworthy here that two parallel stages have been put up at Sultanpur Lodhi. While the SGPC has hired Guru Nanak Stadium, 100 meters away from Gurdwara Ber Sahib, the state government has spent Rs 520 million to erect a tent city and a huge pandal to accommodate visitors at the backside of the Gurdwara for the main events.


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