Wednesday, March 1, 2000,
Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Bibi can’t attend meeting: Satlani
From Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

AMRITSAR, Feb 29 — Giani Puran Singh, Jathedar, Akal Takht, may face yet another setback as Justice Kuldip Singh (Retd), former President of the World Sikh Council and a confidant of Bhai Ranjit Singh, has categorically stated that he will not attend the meeting of the 12-member executive committee to be held at Akal Takht tomorrow.

The executive was formed by Giani Puran Singh on February 23 to run the affairs of the council.

It could not be ascertained whether Bibi Jagir Kaur, SGPC chief, would attend the meeting tomorrow. But Baba Mangal Singh Satlani, acting President, Gurmat Gurbani Parcharak Sant Samaj, announced that he and his supporters would oppose any attempt by her to participate in the meeting.

He said Bibi Jagir Kaur could not attend the meeting as she stood “excommunicated” from the Panth.

By virtue of being the SGPC President, Bibi Jagir Kaur is member of the 12-member executive panel of the council.

Bhai Ranjit Singh said today he was the patron of the council. There was no question of submitting the funds to Giani Puran Singh at the meeting tomorrow as Justice Kuldip Singh continued to be President of the council.

He claimed the constitution of the 12-member executive, replacing the World Sikh Council, by Giani Puran Singh was “illegal and unconstitutional”.

“The World Sikh Council and its office-bearers were nominated under the constitution of the council at Akal Takht. Hence, Giani Puran Singh has no right to remove them,” he said.

Mr Jaswant Singh Mann, who represents one faction of the WSC, has promised to submit Rs 15 lakh to the Jathedar at the meeting tomorrow.

Talking to TNS, Justice Kuldip Singh claimed that Giani Puran Singh had assured him that the WSC, did not stand dissolved. He said the Jathedar had also told him that the 12-member committee had been constituted to unite both factions.

Bhai Ranjit Singh said the proposed conference of the WSC would be held on April 4 at Jalandhar. Giani Puran Singh has banned the holding of any meeting or seminar on the controversial Nanakshahi calendar by council.

“Let Giani Puran Singh dare summon me at Akal Takht for defying his directive”, he said.

He said when Bibi Jagir Kaur and the pro-Badal SGPC executive which had appointed Giani Puran Singh did not obey his directives, how could others be expected to obey him.

He said Giani Puran Singh had been appointed Jathedar in gross violation of the Sikh “Maryada” (tradition) and blamed Mr Badal for the denigration of Akal Takht.

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