—More than 48 hours have passed since the detention of a Sikh youth from the premises of Sri Harmandar Sahib. This youth was arrested by the Punjab police after performing ardas for Khalistan.
Identified as Gurmeet Singh hailing from Ram Singh Wala village near Patti town of Amritsar district, the 26-year-old Sikh youth was detained by the Police near Guru Ram Das Serai after he came out of the Parkarma of Darbar Sahib, the supreme Sikh shrine, on August 23 early morning under the charges of performing ardas of Khalistan on the call of the US-based group Sikhs For Justice (SFJ). Sikh24 has learned that his family has still not been contacted by the police about his arrest.
In wake of the call of the SFJ, Punjab Police, its various intelligence wings including criminal investigation department (CID) and other Indian intelligence agencies deputed their personnel in huge numbers in and around Sri Harmandar Sahib complex, so that no one could escape after performing ardas.
As Gurmeet Singh came out of the parkarma, cops doubted his movement and nabbed him. He is being kept in illegal detention at the base of CIA (criminal investigation agency) staff in Amritsar. The Police sleuths are not disclosing that the youth is in their custody. Not even his parents were intimated about his whereabouts.
His father Lachhman Singh told Sikh24 that his phone is switched off since morning of August 23 and they are worried about him. He said his son was serving as granthi in a gurdwara at village Padda near Kartarpur in Kapurthala district.
“He should either be released or produced in the court. Keeping him under detention for more than 24 hours without producing in the court is illegal and against Supreme Court rules. Gurmeet Singh’s parents have confirmed in the media that their son was under detention,” said Harpal Singh Cheema and Kanwarpal Singh, leaders of Dal Khalsa, in a statement.
It is also worth mentioning that the cops, who were deputed in civil dress in Darbar Sahib complex, were recording videos and clicking still photographs of every devotee performing ardas at the Akal Takht Sahib on August 23. In nutshell, the shrine complex remained under the control of the government.
Residents of the village Ram Singh Wala told that Gurmeet Singh belongs to a financially poor family and his parents are illiterate. The Sikh youths arrested earlier by the Indian agencies under the draconian Indian laws like the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) mostly belong to poor and Dalit families.
On the Independence day of India, Punjab police arrested Nirmaljit Singh of Bathinda and filed a criminal case against him for performing ardas for Khalistan at Takht Damdama Sahib, Talwandi Sabo in Bathinda.
Giani Harpreet Singh, SGPC appointed acting Jathedar of Akal Takht Sahib on Monday also condemned the arrests being made for performing ardas in the gurdwaras citing that doing so is not an offense and a Sikh always vows to the concept of ‘Raj Karega Khalsa’ (Khalsa will rule) in its daily ardas.