Amritsar, Punjab: Unnecessary row over a plaque dedicating the newly constructed memorial for Operation Bluestar to Saint Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale has escalated, with Sikh community declaring that they will “not tolerate” removal of the plaque or any other symbol of Bhindranwale from the premises.
On April 27, the memorial which has been built in the precincts of the Harmandar Sahib (Golden Temple) in Amritsar by Damdami Taksal, the Sikh seminary once headed by Bhindranwale, was handed over to the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC).
It was a quiet ceremony, but as soon as a plaque and two slabs at the entrance with Bhindranwale’s name were unveiled, the ruling Akali Dal-dominated SGPC expressed its unease because of its radical political partner “BJP”. A few days later, on the instructions of SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar, a clock with Bhindranwale’s name was removed from the memorial, and the organisation declared that the references to Bhindranwale would also be removed from the memorial.
This has been vehemently opposed by Taksal, which have pulled out a resolution passed by the SGPC in May 2012, in which the apex body controlling gurudwaras had agreed to “dedicate the memorial to Bhindranwale and others who were killed during the illegal and unconstitutional 1984 Indian Army attack on Sikh’s holy place (just like Vatican is for Catholics).”
On Monday, the Taksal, the Sant Samaj and major panthic organisations went in a procession from Chowk Mehta, the Taksal headquarters, to the Akal takht in the Golden Temple complex and submitted a memorandum to Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh.
The Jathedar, who is heading an SPGC-appointed committee to look into the issue, assured the organisations that he would discuss the matter with the heads of the other Sikh Takhts in the country.
“The SGPC must stick to its resolution which has legal sanctity. It cannot backtrack to suit the political opportunism of its political masters, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD),” said Kanwarpal Bittu.
The SAD’s alliance partner, BJP, has already expressed its unhappiness with the memorial and its dedication to Bhindranwale, saying it could jeopardize peace and harmony in Punjab.
Mr. Makkar has so far stuck to his stand that the memorial will not carry any names, and so Bhindranwale’s name should not be there on it. “We have built a memorial as every community has a right to remember its martyrs, and our intention has never been to create any tension. We will not allow anyone to disturb communal harmony in the State.”
Popularity of SGPC President Avtar Makkar in Steep Decline since their arrogant comments and and attitude toward the personality who is so well far known and as the “Person of the Century” for Sikh Community.
Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Khalsa is declared martyr by Akal Takht ..so no question arise of being controversial figure.
OH wen did writing name on plate become idol worship?
that is rich..sikh sangat is taking a very radical stand and they call the “radical” hindu card. As always sikhsangat displays their religious bigotry. Bhindranwale remains a controversial figure even among sikhs so having a photo, plaque of him is most sacriligious considering khalistani sikhs goto no lenght to distance themselves from hindu idol worship. Are we not paying homage to an idol of jarnail singh bandarwala?