SGPC, Punjab government condemn Sikh beheading in Pakistan

February 22nd, 2010 - 1:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Taliban Chandigarh, Feb 22 (IANS) The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and the Punjab government Monday condemned the beheading of a Sikh near Pakistan’s Peshawar city and sought the central government’s intervention to ensure the safety of Sikhs in the restive tribal region.
Reacting to reports of the beheading of a Sikh, Jaspal Singh, by Taliban elements after his recent abduction from Tirah Valley in Khyber agency near Peshawar, the SGPC sought immediate action.

“This is a condemnable act. The central government should take up the matter with the Pakistan government to ensure the safety of Sikhs in that area,” SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar said.

Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal too demanded intervention of the central government in protecting Sikhs in Pakistan.

“The government should not sleep in this matter. Life of Sikhs should be protected,” Badal said here.

One of the three Sikhs abducted by Pakistani Taliban was found beheaded in Pakistan’s restive tribal region Sunday.

Jaspal Singh was kidnapped along with two other Sikh residents by Taliban militants from Tirah valley in Khyber Agency near the provincial capital Peshawar, DawnNews reported.

His two other companions, Gorwandar Singh and Srujeet Singh, are still being held captive by the militants, the report said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the abduction and murder.

India’s opposition Bhartiya Janata Party has also asked the government to mount “diplomatic pressure” on Pakistan to ensure release of the abducted Sikh residents in the country.

Minorities are facing threats in Pakistan and terrorism presents the real picture of that country, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said in New Delhi.

A large number of Pakistani Sikhs has fled from Orakzai and Tirah valley where the non-Muslims have been charged “Jazia” or Islamic Tax by militants on the pretext of providing security in the area.

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