SGPC row: Sikh leaders call off congregations as Akal Takht steps in
Zee Media Bureau
Amritsar: Stepping into the row over creation of a separate Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), the Akal Takht - the highest temporal seat of the Sikh religion - on Saturday asked the warring factions to call off the planned Sikh congregations in Amritsar and Karnal tomorrow.
As per reports, Sikh leaders both in Punjab and Haryana have agreed to follow the Akal Takht directions.
The tensions started after the Haryana government decided to create a separate gurdwara management committee in the state.
Akal Takht jathedar Gyani Gurbachan Singh today issued a directive to Sikhs of Haryana, ruling SAD (Badal) and the entire Sikh community not to hold any kind of rally or convention tomorrow in Amritsar and in Karnal by Haryana-based Sikh leaders.
At a hurriedly called press conference here, the jathedar said that in the light of the prevailing circumstances, nobody could be allowed to hold convention or rally anywhere in Punjab and Haryana as it may deepen the crisis in the Sikh circle.
Keeping in the view the violence in Saharanpur in UP, everybody should focus attention on easing the situation there, he said.
An SGPC team led by president Avtar Singh Makkar has been directed to reach Saharanpur to ease the situation, said the jathedar.
Talking about the separate Haryana Gurdwara Management Committee, the jathedar said both the parties (Sikh leaders from Haryana and Akali leaders from Punjab) would be asked to come to Akal Takht to find a solution to the current problem which arose after formation of a separate gurdwara committee in Haryana.
Sunday`s meet in Amritsar was called after the Haryana government refused to pay heed to the Centre`s missive to revoke the law passed for the creation of a separate SGPC for the state, which Punjab has termed "unconstitutional" and "illegal".
Haryana has brushed aside the Centre`s directive calling for the annulment of the Act, saying it has every right to enact a law and the Haryana Gurdwara Act has been passed under its legislative powers. It has instead asked the Centre to withdraw its letter.
Kaptan Solanki, the Governor-designate of Haryana, meanwhile said that he will take a decision on HSGPC issue after listening to all sides, adding he can take legal advice too.
(With PTI inputs)
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