Gurdaspur, Punjab: Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, while claiming that setting up of a separate gurdwara parbandhak committee for Sikhs of Haryana will have serious and dangerous consequences, said he would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tomorrow or so to ask him to intervene in the matter and stop such a move.
“How Sikhs will tolerate another injustice done to them in the matter of religion by the Congress government at the Centre, which has been discriminating against this community for the past many decades,” asked Badal, adding that he had asked for an appointment with Dr Manmohan Singh so that corrective action could be taken at the earliest.
Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Chief Minister, Haryana, while talking to mediapersons yesterday at Chandigarh, had announced that a separate Sikh gurdwara parbandhak committee could come into existence in Haryana on November 1, 2009.
In an exclusive interview with The Tribune here today, Badal urged the Haryana government to learn a lesson from history. Punjab had already suffered a lot on account of militancy in the state.
The bad days started in Punjab only when the then Prime Minister, late Indira Gandhi, did not form a committee to find out whether injustice had been done to the Sikhs in the matter of religion or not.
“The SGPC, Amritsar, came into existence after a lot of sacrifices were made by Sikhs. Even a close kin of Dr Manmohan Singh was imprisoned during the movement launched for getting independence for gurdwaras. Now, the Haryana government was trying to break up the SGPC for protecting its political interests,” he pointed out.
Feeling hurt and disappointed over the move of the Haryana government to set up a separate committee for Sikhs, Badal said 95 per cent of the Sikhs living in Haryana were not in favour of such a committee. He added that the SGPC was a representative body of the Sikhs for the entire country and there was no point in trying to break it, at any cost.
He said the SGPC could move court to stop the Haryana government from setting up a separate gurdwara parbandhak committee for the Sikhs living in that state.
SGPC chief Avtar Singh today also urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to immediately intervene in the matter. In a communique to the Prime Minister, the SGPC president said there was a great anguish and resentment among the Sikh community over the unconstitutional declaration of the Haryana CM.
He said he had already sought an appointment with the Prime Minister, but the PM office had not arranged a meeting yet.
He urged the PM not to allow the legislation of separate management committee for Sikh shrines in Haryana, otherwise it would prove a blemish on the forehead of the Union government.