Chandigarh: Punjab Assembly on Thursday passed by voice vote a resolution against setting up of a separate body in Haryana for managing the gurdwaras there amid dissent from the main Opposition Congress.
"This House strongly recommends to the state government to take up the matter with the Central government to restrain any state government from interfering in the religious affairs or religious institutions of other states," read the resolution moved by the SAD MLA Bibi Jagir Kaur, who is also former SGPC president.
After the detailed discussion, which also evoked heated arguments, Speaker Charanjit Singh Atwal put the resolution to voting.
In the absence of consent from the Congress legislators, the Speaker announced that the resolution stands passed with majority vote.
Tracing the history of the 94-year-old SGPC, which is also known as the Mini Parliament of Sikhs, the Akali MLA said that it was neither the issue of Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda nor any other individual but a matter concerning entire Sikh community.
She said that the SGPC in 2005 had passed a unanimous resolution against setting up of separate body for the control and management of gurdwaras in Haryana.
She recalled that in 2011 SGPC elections, the Sikh voters of Haryana had also rejected the move by voting against the contestants, who were seeking separate SGPC.
"Water, land, bridges etc can be divided but religious sentiments and religious places cannot be divided at any cost," Kaur said, while appealing to all Sikhs, cutting across party lines, to join hands against this move.
She questioned that when Haryana cannot create its separate capital city or High Court, what was the reason to establish a separate SGPC?