AMRITSAR SAHIB: Sri Akal Takht Sahib former jathedar Bhai Ranjit Singh today led an impressive gathering of Sikh activists, organized outside Sri Darbar Sahib (Harmandir Sahib) to protest role of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) in Guru Granth Sahib’s holy saroops and rare manuscripts going missing.
Bhai Ranjit Singh planned the demonstration to dare the SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal and SGPC-appointed acting jathedar of Akal Takht Sahib Giani Harpreet Singh to give clarification over the whereabouts of the missing saroops and the rare manuscripts.
On the call given by him, the Sikhs gathered at Burj Akali Phoola Singh in a large number to support the cause. Chanting ‘Satnam-Waheguru’ and displaying banners against the SGPC, they started a march from this place and it culminated at Sri Darbar Sahib. Hundreds of the Sikh volunteers took part in the procession.
As per their programme, they sat on the entrance plaza of the holiest Sikh shrine peacefully to seek clarification about the holy saroops going missing from the publishing house of the apex gurdwara body and rare handwritten manuscripts of Guru Granth Sahib, Dasam Granth, other Sikh scriptures and original hukamnamas of Guru Sahib, that were taken away from the Sikh Reference Library by Indian army during attack on Sri Darbar Sahib in 1984 and returned later.
While addressing the gathering, the former jathedar exposed the role of the SGPC which is controlled by the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), in the holy saroops going missing. He dared Longowal to appear before the Sikh sangat and give clarification in this sensitive matter concerned with sentiments of the entire Sikh nation. However, Longowal did not turn up there. During the three-hour long sit-in, the Sikhs also performed gurbani kirtan.
The SGPC issued a press release in the evening to defend itself from the attack of Bhai Ranjit Singh, but failed to give answers to the questions raised by him. Its spokesperson Kulwinder Singh Ramdas stated that the former jathedar is misleading the Sikh sangat and politicizing the matter.
On the other, the morcha launched by Bhai Baldev Singh Wadala-led Sikh Sadbhawna Dal against the SGPC over the issue of missing saroops entered day 4 on heritage street leading to Sri Darbar Sahib. It is also getting a good response from sangat. Dhadis, Kawishers and Kirtanis perform daily at the place of morcha. Thus it has turned out to be the centre of attraction on the way to Sri Darbar Sahib.
These demonstrations have become the biggest headache for the SGPC and the SAD (Badal) which controls it as the SGPC polls are likely be held in near future.