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Ugly turn

The HSGPC controversy has taken an ugly turn with Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh excommunicating three senior leaders of Haryana from the Panth. This has been done at the behest of Punjab Chief Minister Badal who is treating the SGPC as his private company and Takht jathedars are puppets in the hands of the SAD-BJP government.

The Akal Takht Jathedar cannot dare to summon the CM or the Deputy CM to the Takht to explain how they have accumulated huge wealth and properties through corrupt practices which is against Sikh tenents.

Rajasthan Sikhs had also raised their voice for the formation of a separate panel for the management of Rajasthan gurdwaras. One wonders why no Sikh from Haryana is given presidentship of the SGPC, a matter pinching them. The tenure of the SGPC president should be three years and a person should be allowed only one term. Why did GS Tohra remain president for more than 22 years? And now Avtar Singh Makkar is running the sixth term of presidentship. It should run by Amritdhari Sikhs not indulging in politics.

Actually, the 'golak' money of the Sikh sangat is the bone of contention among the leaders.

Sher Singh, Ludhiana

SGPC at fault

The SGPC is to be blamed for the alienation of Sikhs due to its arrogance and unsympathetic attitude. Now, Sikhs of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, J&K and Chandigarh will also demand separate gurdwara management committees.

The state of dharmic affairs can be gauged by the fact that I have received no response to my letters to the SGPC president seeking clarification related to the singing of ‘aasa di vaar’ on ‘Tunde asraje di dhuni’ as ordered by our guru in the Golden Temple. The ‘ragis’ sing it in different tunes and some ‘powris’ are read by only ‘tablewala’ when Darbar Sahib granthis and the Jathedar of Akal Takht are hearing while in attendance of Guru Granth Sahib. No steps are taken to obey the order of the Guru and the exercise appears to be a mere formality. This attitude is alienating the Sikhs in general from the takht.

Mohinder Singh, Chandigarh

Real issues ignored

The controversy created by Badal on the Act passed by the Haryana Government for establishing the HSGPC is unfortunate. Badal is playing the Sikh card on this issue though it is believed that the HSGPC is beneficial for the Sikhs of Haryana. The SGPC is not fulfilling the aspirations of Sikhs living outside Punjab. If Badal wants to start a morcha, he should do so against drug abuse, price rise and misgovernance in Punjab. Badal must not vitiate the atmosphere between the states. He should not try to divert the attention of the people from the real issues.

Simrat Singh, Ludhiana

Maintain harmony

Apropos the editorial “Fighting for gurdwaras” (July 13), the confrontation between the two groups must be avoided in order to maintain harmonious relations within the community and give the right direction to the youngsters. If subjects concerning faith are decided by courts, their value decreases. Maintaining gurdwaras is a service to humanity. The Haryana Government has played a political drama. Hope the Centre will solve the issue amicably.

AS Anand, Ludhiana

Jathedars biased

Akal Takht jathedars are imposing tankhaiah on a preferential basis. No such word was heard when Akali leaders tossed the turbans of their Congress counterparts in the Punjab Assembly. In the Majithia episode, tankhaiah was pronounced after much hue and cry. As a practising Sikh, I'm disturbed to see this trend. Sikh priests didn't show such eagerness when Punjab IAS officer K.S Pannu was humiliated in Uttarakhand.

The affairs of Akal Takht seem to be managed by their political bosses and not on grounds of morality. This is not a good precedent.

Deepjot S Thukral, Ambala Cantt

Wisdom prevails

It is heartening to note that the visit of HSGMC members to Amritsar passed off peacefully. The SGPC deployed a task force to ensure that no untoward incident took place. Haryana leaders also played a positive role by not insisting on entering Akal Takht. Sikhs hope that in future, too, wisdom will prevail upon leaders of both Punjab  and Haryana.

Surjit Singh Sarpal, Patiala

Quality of education

This is in reference to the news item “Govt takes U-turn on pvt varsities issue” (July 22). The privatisation of education should become a source of income for the state government, but the reality is otherwise. A number of educational institutions are granted sanctions on political considerations, resulting in lowering of education standards. Politicians seem to be concerned with the number of institutions rather than their quality.

The state transfers thousands of bighas of land to these institutions on nominal lease money with the liberty to transfer the use of land after 25 years. With this, it has diluted the spirit of Section 118 of the HP Land Reforms and Tenancy Act, 1972. For these discrepancies, both the Congress and the BJP governments are equally responsible. 
The state government should take remedial steps to improve the standard of education in Himachal Pradesh for the sake of the coming generations.

BR Kaundal, Mandi

Poor denied funds

Apropos the report “97 per cent funds under Indira Awas Yojana go to SC/ST people” ( July 23), a lady hailing from my village (Ambota), Mrs Kashmiro Devi, wife of the late Bindhi Chand, is still living in a thatched dilapidated house all alone. She has no son to look after her in her old age.

Apparently, the benefits of the ‘pro-poor scheme’ have still to reach her. Would somebody concerned look into her case and other such cases?

Tara Chand, Ambota (Una)

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