Vienna violence against Sikhs still agitating Punjab leaders

June 2nd, 2009 - 1:29 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, June 2 (ANI): A delegation of social workers and political leaders including legislators and parliamentarians from Punjab met External Affairs Minister S M Krishna here on Monday.

The delegation, which included junior Foreign Minister Preneet Kaur, expressed concern of the people of Punjab over the recent Vienna incident in which two preaches and other followers of Dera Sach Khand, a sect professing Sikh tenets were attacked at a Gurudwara (Sikh shrine) in Vienna, Austria.

They also presented the Ministry of External Affairs a memorandum demanding a probe into the incident.

Later, briefing the mediapersons, the spokesman of the Ministry said that the Minister had assured relevant steps had been taken and that the injured preacher is recovering.

“He assured the delegation that MEA had been in regular contact with Indian Embassy in Vienna over the incident and that developments were being closely monitored. The condition of Sant Niranjan Das is stable and improving,” said Vishnu Prakash, spokesperson, MEA.

The violence in Vienna occurred soon after the second in command of the Dera Saccha Khand Baland, Sant Ramanand and Sant Niranjan Dass were invited to deliver a sermon at the gurudwara. They were allegedly assaulted by at least six followers of the gurudwara with knives and guns.

Over 20 people were injured in the attack. Sant Ramanand, 57, later succumbed to injuries in a hospital.

Consequent to the attack, curfew was imposed at many places in Punjab as thousands of dalits, torched trains, cars and shops on May 27 to protest against the killing of their sect’s senior preacher in Vienna. (ANI)

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