Akal Takht raises questions over transportation of ‘saroop’ by father-son duo

Police procures two-day remand of the duo; accused reveal ‘saroop’ was to be delivered to a person in Pune

Akal Takht raises questions over transportation of ‘saroop’ by father-son duo

Photo for representational purpose only.

GS Paul

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, November 20

A day after the father-son duo was held at Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport for carrying Guru Granth Sahib ‘saroop’ in a suitcase, the Akal Takht officiating Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh directed Baba Kulwant Singh of Gurdwara Nanaksar Samadh Bhai, Moga, to clarify his stance over the issue.

Meanwhile, the police have procured a two-day remand of Jawala Singh and his son Jasveer Singh, who had disclosed the name of Baba Kulwant Singh during the preliminary investigation.

Rajinder Singh, SHO, Airport Police Station, said Baba Kulwant Singh had also been included as an accused in the FIR. The trio have been booked under sections 295-A, 120-B and 34 of the IPC, he said.

Also read: 2 held for carrying ‘saroop’ in suitcase at Amritsar airport

On the other hand, in a communication sent to Baba Kulwant Singh, the Jathedar has asked him to reveal the source through which he had procured the saroop and the motive behind it.

Jaspal Singh, PA to Jathedar, said Kulwant Singh was given five days to furnish his reply to the Akal Takht Secretariat.

Jwala Singh and his son Jasvir Singh were taken into custody for violating the ‘Sikh Rayat Maryada’. The two were to take a flight to New Delhi and from there to Pune when they were held at the airport here.

The father-son disclosed the saroop was to be delivered to one Gurbaksh Singh, who is a sewadar at Gurdwara Nanaksar in Pune.

It was learnt that they didn’t possess any authorisation letter to carry the ‘saroop’, and defying ‘maryada’ they had kept the ‘saroop’ in a suitcase.

Before they could board the flight, an auto-rickshaw driver raised suspicion and informed the police. The SGPC team too reached the airport and took the ‘saroop’ in their possession which was then placed at Gurdwara Ramsar Sahib in Amritsar.

Protocol for transportation of ‘saroop’

The ‘saroop’ cannot be transported in a suitcase, closet or cupboard.

Within India, SGPC reserves all rights to transport the ‘saroops’ in a special bus with ‘maryada’.

Whilst the saroop is on the move, five Singhs (a minimum of three) are mandatory to accompany the ‘saroop’ all the  time.

If travelling by domestic flight, the attendant must possess an authorisation letter from the SGPC which ensures that ‘maryada’ was being followed, like for long distance travel an extra seat has to be reserved alongside the attendant.

The ‘saroop’ must be covered, and placed on a cushion or cloth draping on the seat when travelling.

For a shorter distance by a private vehicle, the saroop has to be carried on the head or in the lap.

For overseas journey, Akal Takht had in 2014 directed that the ‘saroops’ could be transported by air only through chartered flights while observing ‘maryada’.

The directions were issued following a row over disrespect to the ‘saroop’ while being dispatched in containers through sea route to gurdwaras in the US, the UK and Europe as there was no printing facility there.

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