Amritsar, Punjab: The struggle for rebuilding the historic Gurdwara Gyan Godri at Har Ki Pauri in Haridwar may get a fresh impetus as a 57-year-old resident of ‘Chitti Kothi’, Ibrahampur village of Haridwar, has decided to sit on fast-unto-death if the Uttarakhand government does not hand over the shrine to Sikhs by January 7 – the birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th master of Sikhs.
Joga Singh, a farmer from Ibrahampur village, told TOI on Thursday that Sikhs and Sant Samaj had struggled for years for reconstruction of Gurdwara Gyan Godri. “In 1978, a wall of the gurdwara had caved in during the construction of a bridge at Har Ki Paur, and the shrine was demolished during the 1984 Sikh genocide,” he said. The site now has shops and an office of Bharat Scouts and Guides.
According to Joga, not only Sikhs, but even Hindus, Muslims and various other sects, including Nirmalas, Udasis and a leader of local saints, were supporting him in the religious cause. “My whole family lives in these villages. We are five brothers and I am a farmer. I will sit on fast for the reconstruction of the gurdwara till my last breath,” he said.
Meanwhile, All India Sikh Conference (AISC) president Gurcharan Singh Babbar informed that they had launched an international campaign for the reconstruction of the gurdwara. “We are distributing pamphlets in Delhi and sending online messages across the globe, urging the Akal Takht jathedar to immediately direct Punjab government to intervene and rebuild the gurdwara,” he said.
Gurcharan said that they would move towards the gurdwara from Ponta Sahib on January 7 morning to take possession of the shrine. He said, the AISC had appealed to leaders of all religious groups to extend support to the cause.