Ludhiana, Punjab: The tug-of-war over appointing the successor to Jagjit Singh took an ugly turn when members of the International Namdhari Sangat took to the streets here.
Namdhari sect head Jagjit Singh had died on December 13 and his nephew Thakur Uday Singh was appointed the successor on December 16.
The International Namdhari Sangat, however, wanted Uday Singh’s brother Thakur Dalip Singh appointed as the new Satguru. The Sangat had even appealed to Jagjit Singh’s widow Chand Kaur to reconsider the decision to appoint Uday Singh as the new head.
The International Sangat members today burnt an effigy of Namdhari Darbar (Bhaini Sahib) president HS Hanspal and vice-president Surinder Lyal in Ludhiana. The activists alleged that Hanspal and Lyal were trying to create factionalism among the Namdhari sect over succession.
International Namdhari Sangat president Navtej Singh said Hanspal and Lyal allegedly had vested interests in appointing Uday Singh as the new head. “Hanspal and Lyal want to become politically important and, therefore, have appointed Uday Singh as the sect head. Both are indirectly trying to divide the Namdharis,” he said.
Navtej alleged that both these leaders had committed a sin by ignoring Jagjit Singh’s desire and announcing Uday Singh as the head instead of Dalip Singh. He claimed that a majority of the Namdhari Sangat was in Dalip Singh’s favour and that Hanspal and Lyal had allegedly ignored the mass feeling.
When questioned on the issue, Lyal said the International Namdhari Sangat was a “fake organisation”. “There is no confusion over succession as Chand Kaur herself had announced Uday Singh as the new head. A section of the Sangat is trying to defame the Namdhari sect,” he added.
Hanspal, however, refused to comment on the issue.