Amritsar: Sikh intellectual Kirpal Singh Badungar was on Saturday elected as the new president of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), the mini parliament of the religion, officials said.
Badungar will replace outgoing SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar, who remained in the post for 11 years.
The election for the SGPC top post was held after nearly six years. Punjab`s ruling Shiromani Akali Dal dominates the SGPC.
The SGPC general house had, on Friday, authorised Akali Dal President Sukhbir Singh Badal to select the new SGPC president.
Badungar, who is known for his work on Sikh history, will have a new team of office bearers and executives to work with.
Shiromani Akali Dal spokesman and Punjab Education minister Daljit Singh Cheema welcomed the "unanimous election" of Badungar.
"He has all the qualities and experience to be the SGPC chief. He has been elected for the third time," Cheema told media.
The election and change of guard of the SGPC president has come at a time when the Sikh religion is facing crisis in Punjab due to repeated incidents of sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib.