SGPC hails US verdict lifting ban on ‘kirpan’

Amritsar, Punjab:  The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has hailed a US court’s decision to lift the ban on wearing ‘kirpan’ on the premises of Gurdwara of Rochester. In a statement issued here today, SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar said the court verdict had come as a big relief to the Sikh community in the US.

It was earlier alleged that the trustees of the gurdwara had submitted affidavits to the court supporting an application for preliminary injunction from the judge for “barring all persons entering the gurdwara premises from bringing in ceremonial sheathed swords larger than 4-6 inches or other weapons that could cause injury or be a threat to the persons on the premises”. This had invited criticism from a large section of Sikhs.

However, the board of trustees later clarified that there was no restriction on the small ‘kirpan’.

“There is also no restriction on the full-size ‘kirpan’ usually carried by Bhai Sahibans and/or anyone who normally wears it. Nobody has ever been denied entry to the gurdwara because of the size of the ‘kirpan’ during the past over 30 years of its existence,” they stated.

Makkar also welcomed the verdict of the Pakistan Supreme Court directing former chairman of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), Syed Asif Hashmi, to deposit the money allegedly embezzled by him.

The trust looks after gurdwara affairs in Pakistan.

Source: The Tribune

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