Amritsar: With various Sikh organisations calling for a day-long bandh to protest against the alleged desecration of the holy book, several areas in Punjab remained largely or partially shut on Thursday hitting the normal life across the state.
The Sant Samaj led by Damdami Taksal chief Harnam Singh Dhuma had called for a shutdown in Malwa and other areas of the state today to protest against the alleged desecration of the holy book - the Guru Granth Sahib.
Dhuma said the ‘bandh’ was called to pressure the government. “Those responsible for the sacrilege of the scripture should be arrested immediately,” he added.
Dhuma, however, asked Sikhs in the Malwa belt to maintain peace during the bandh.
The bandh is being observed in Faridkot, Moga, Fazilka, Ferozepur, Muktsar, Bathinda and Barnala.
While schools and colleges remain shut today, health services have been kept out of its purview.
Today's bandh has been called in protest against alleged desecration of Guru Granth Sahib as well as police-violence like firing and lathicharge on Sikhs.
Punjab Police has meanwhile deployed its forces in several areas of the state to ensure law and order during the bandh.
Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal had ordered a probe into the alleged desecration of Guru Granth Sahib. Badal also announced a reward of Rs one crore for giving information on people who were involved in the desecration of Guru Granth Sahib.
Badal appealed to the Sikh community to maintain peace and promised to give exemplary punishment to the culprits.
Sikh community members have been agitating against the same for the last four days. It took an ugly turn on Wednesday when two people were killed and 90 injured including several policemen.