SGPC member declared ‘tankhah’ for attending dera meet

Amritsar, Punjab: The Sikh clergy announced ‘tankhah’ to SGPC member Navtej Singh Kauni and Bhai Charanjeet Singh Ludhiana here today.

While Kauni has been awarded ‘tankhah’ (punishment for religious misconduct) by Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh for attending a congregation of Dera Sacha Sauda in violation of the Akal Takht edict, Bhai Charanjeet Singh Ludhiana has been given ‘tankhah’ for allegedly transporting four ‘birs’ of Guru Granth Sahib to an airport by keeping them in suitcases.

Following a meeting of the Sikh clergy at the Akal Takht Secretariat here, Giani Gurbachan Singh directed Kauni to perform ‘path’ of Japji Sahib apart from ‘Nitnem’ at Sri Darbar Sahib, Muktsar, besides listening to ‘gurbani’ for one hour and performing ‘sewa’ there daily for 18 days. He has also been asked to perform ‘ardaas’ by offering Rs 2,100, ‘apologising for his deed’ and then inform the Akal Takht Secretariat about it.

Kauni, an SGPC member from Doda (Muktsar), had reportedly attended the dera congregation at Bhullar village on May 16 during campaigning for Zila Parishad and Block Samiti elections.

Reacting to the ‘tankhah’, Kauni clarified that he had not gone to the dera congregation to participate in it, but he was there to call a person.

Incidentally, this is the second time that Kauni has been awarded ‘tankhah’ for attending Dera Sacha Sauda congregation. Earlier, in March 2011, the Sikh high priests had directed him to clean utensils in the ‘langar’ hall of the Golden Temple for a fortnight. At that time, he had also pledged to follow the Akal Takht edict as per which the Sikhs were directed to boycott Dera Sacha Sauda after Dera head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh “hurt Sikh sentiments” by imitating attire of Guru Gobind Singh in 2007.

In another instance, Sikh clergy announced ‘tankhah’ for Bhai Charanjeet Singh Ludhiana for allegedly carrying four ‘birs’ of Guru Granth Sahib to an airport by keeping them in suitcases so as to take them to the USA. This was a clear violation of the Akal Takht edict which has laid out proper guidelines to transport the holy book from one place to another.

The Akal Takht Jathedar directed Bhai Charanjeet Singh to perform ‘sewa’ at ‘joda ghar’ (shoe-keeping facility), besides cleaning the utensils at the ‘langar’ at the Golden Temple for one hour daily for one week. He has also been asked to perform ‘Nitnem’ and five ‘paths’ of Japji Sahib daily at Sri Harmandar Sahib for a week. After undergoing ‘tankhah’, he will also perform ‘ardaas’ by offering Rs 5,100 at the Akal Takht for ‘mistake committed by him’. On returning to the USA, he will also hold a ‘Sehaj Path’.

The clergy also made it clear that Guru Granth Sahib could not be permanently installed in the houses which have ‘liquor bar’. It was also clarified that Akhand Path could only be held in gurdwaras or home and not in ‘samadhs’ or other such places.

Source: The Tribune

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