Sikh clergymen headed for crisis

June 10th, 2008 - 11:07 pm ICT by IANS  

Amritsar, June 10 (IANS) The top Sikh clergy were headed for a crisis Tuesday after the chief of one of the five apex religious seats, Iqbal Singh of the Takht Patna Sahib, defied the Akal Takht - the highest temporal seat of Sikh religion - and declared four top Sikh religious leaders as “big culprits”. Summoning his own meeting of Sikh religious leaders at his headquarters in Patna city of Bihar, Iqbal Singh, who has been crossing swords with other top Sikh religious leaders, especially Akal Takht head Joginder Singh Vedanti, reiterated that all Takhts were equal and there was no provision for the supremacy of the Akal Takht.

Besides the Akal Takht in Amritsar, the Sikhs rever four other ‘takhts’ (religious seats) as the apex forum of their religion.

The religious leaders branded “maha doshi” (big culprits) in his order include Vedanti of Akal Takht, Tarlochan Singh of Takht Keshgarh Sahib (Anandpur Sahib, Punjab), Balwant Singh Nandgarh of Damdama Sahib (near Bathinda), and Gurbachan Singh, the head priest of the Golden Temple.

The Patna head also rejected a June 6 edict by the Akal Takht on religious matters.

Iqbal Singh has locked horns with the Akal Takht over the Sikh Nanakshahi calendar and other issues too.

Volunteers physically prevented Iqbal singh from attending a meeting of Sikh religious heads inside the Golden Temple complex June 6.

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