Haryana SGPC chief held as a preventive measure

September 15th, 2010 - 4:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Kurukshetra (Haryana), Sep 15 (IANS) Two people, including Sikh leader Jagdish Singh Jhinda who set a deadline to take over control of Sikh shrines in Haryana, were Wednesday arrested to maintain law and order in this district.
Jhinda, who heads an adhoc Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) in Haryana, decided to take over control of Sikh shrines in the state by Sep 15 from the Punjab-based SGPC.

Hundreds of Sikhs, from all across the state, gathered here Wednesday to take part in the movement.

“We have arrested Haryana SGPC president Jagdish Singh Jhinda and a youth leader of the SGPC Kamaljeet Singh Ajnala as a preventive measure. They could instigate the public to indulge in violence,” district police chief Sultan Singh told IANS.

“Foolproof security arrangements have been made in all parts of Kurukshetra. Our senior officials are supervising the entire operation and we would not allow anyone to disturb the law and order situation of this region,” he added.

Armed Haryana Police personnel were stationed outside major gurdwaras in Kurukshetra, Karnal, Ambala and other places.

The Sikh leadership in Haryana accuses the SGPC of neglecting the state’s gurdwaras and Sikhs, despite these shrines contributing a revenue of Rs.100 million (Rs.10 crore) to the SGPC kitty annually.

However, the SGPC, which is headquartered at the Golden Temple Complex in Punjab’s Amritsar, has refuted all claims of Jhinda and his supporters.

Punjab-based SGPC’s president Avtar Singh Makkar said: “They should follow the rules. They are not allowed to take law into their hands. We are serving Haryana gurudwaras with full dedication and would not allow anyone to interfere in our matters.”

The Jhinda faction of the SGPC in Haryana forcibly took control of the Gurdwara Chhati Pathshai (Sixth Master) here, 110 km from Chandigarh, in September last year. The Punjab-based SGPC regained control of the shrine after one day.

The SGPC, called the mini-parliament of Sikh religion, is dominated by the ruling Akali Dal in Punjab and is a cash-rich organisation with an annual budget of nearly Rs.4.5 billion (Rs.450 crore).

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