Amritsar, Punjab: As expected, Avtar Singh Makkar staged a comeback for the fifth time in a row when he got re-elected as the President of the SGPC with a thumping majority by cornering as many as 139 votes of a total of 164 members present in the general house meeting of the Mini Parliament of the Sikhs here today.
HSGPC Chief Jagdish Singh Jhinda congratulates Avtar Singh on his election as SGPC chief for the fifth consecutive term, in Teja Singh Samundari Hall inside the Golden Temple Complex, Amritsar,
Makkar’s chief opponent Harbans Singh Kandola, who had the support of rebel Akali leaders led by the Shiromani Panthic Council chief Manjit Singh Calcutta, could get only 25 votes at the meeting, which started around 1.20 pm at Teja Singh Samundri Hall and lasted for slightly over two hours.
The SGPC has a total of 180 members and out of them 170 are active members, having voting rights.
Rebel Akali leader Calcutta, who had got support from the Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (HSGPC-ad hoc) chief Jagdish Singh Jhinda, on Tuesday evening boycotted the meeting, saying that at least two members from Haryana should be taken in the executive of the SGPC. He, however, faced criticism on the issue today.
Apart from the inclusion of Bibi Ravinder Kaur in the interim committee, there was no major change in the executive body or office-bearers of the SGPC even as some major changes were expected this time.
Besides Makkar, those who were re-elected to the four-member team of top office-bearers included Raghujit Singh Virk as senior vice-president, Kewal Singh Badal as junior vice-president and Sukhdev Singh Bhaur as general secretary. Apart from Bibi Ravinder Kaur, those who were able to make a re-entry to the 11-member interim committee included Surjit Singh Garhi, Sant Tek Singh Dhanaula, Rajinder Singh Mehta, Mohan Singh Bangi, Gurbachan Singh, Dyal Singh Kalianwali, Bhajan Kaur Dogran, Nirmail Singh Jaula Kalan, Karnail Singh Panjoli and Suba Singh Dabwali.All-India Shiromani Akali Dal senior vice-president Malkit Singh Nagpur also followed Calcutta and boycotted the meeting alleging that the SGPC had been “mismanaged” by a group of people having a “brute majority” in the house.