Harike bridge protesters released : The Tribune India

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Harike bridge protesters released

SGPC forms panel on directions of Akal Takht to provide arrested youth with legal aid

Harike bridge protesters released

The youth who were released with SGPC office-bearers in Amritsar on Friday. Tribune photo



Tribune News Service

Amritsar, May 5

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has facilitated the release of 15 youths who were arrested by the police for staging a dharna on the Harike bridge to protest against the police crackdown on pro-Khalistan supporters in various parts of Punjab.

They had staged the dharna in March for three days. The situation turned ugly when the Punjab Police resorted to a mild cane-charge to clear the Harike bridge on the Ferozepur-Amritsar highway. In the melee, several persons received injuries and the police had arrested some youths also.

A panel was constituted by the SGPC on the directions of Akal Takht to provide them with legal aid.

Upon their release, they reached the SGPC office today to express their gratitude.

SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami assured that the Sikh organisation was committed to fight against injustice done to any member of the community who fought for the Sikh cause.

“The government should refrain from creating an atmosphere of fear in Punjab and withdraw the cases registered against innocent youths,” he said.

SGPC member Bhagwant Singh Sialka said that the cases registered against the youth nabbed at the Harike bridge protest were under Section 307, 353, 186, 332, 341, 283, 431, 188, 148, 149, 120B, 427, 201 and 8B of the National Highway Act. “Out of 15, nine cases were dismissed, while bail was granted in six cases,” he said.

The SGPC has formed a legal panel headed by SGPC member and lawyer Bhagwant Singh Sialka. Another panel was formed under the leadership of former Akal Takht jathedar Jasbir Singh Rode to assist the youth being implicated in false and frivolous cases by the police.

Rode said to maintain peace and tranquility, the state government should review all cases registered against Punjab youths.

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