Early display of bullet-hit Guru Granth Sahib ‘saroop’ in Golden Temple bid to get votes: Parties : The Tribune India

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Early display of bullet-hit Guru Granth Sahib ‘saroop’ in Golden Temple bid to get votes: Parties

Early display of bullet-hit Guru Granth Sahib ‘saroop’ in Golden Temple bid to get votes: Parties

The ‘saroop’ that was damaged during Operation Bluestar in 1984 on display in Amritsar. File



Tribune News Service

GS Paul

Amritsar, May 28

The move of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to put on display from May 26 to June 6 the bullet-hit Guru Granth Sahib ‘saroop’ for visitors in the Golden Temple complex has given an opportunity to parties to term it as a ‘well-thought-out’ attempt to cash in on Sikh sentiment for political gain.

Leaders of different parties have said that it was for the first time, since 2021, that this injured ‘saroop’ was displayed much in advance.

But SGPC general secretary Rajinder Singh Mehta said that the ‘saroop’ was displayed as per the demand of the ‘sangat’ and that this move was absolutely devoid of any political motive.

“These political leaders have scant regard for the sentiments attached with the 1984 operation. They should rather be ashamed of associating it with base political thoughts,” he said.

The 1984 Operation Bluestar anniversary is commemorated on June 6 at the Akal Takht in the Golden Temple complex. After 37 years of Operation Bluestar, the showcasing of this ‘saroop’ was started in 2021 by former SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur.

In 2021, the ‘saroop’ was showcased between June 3 and 5. In 2022, the same process was repeated but between June 2 and 5. In 2023, the saroop was made public for a day on June 6.

But this time — when the voting in Punjab is scheduled for June 1, the last leg of the Lok Sabha poll — the saroop has been kept open for devotees from May 26 to June 6.

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) has majority in the SGPC House. Leaders of other parties believe that it is a well-orchestrated strategy by the SAD only to make a last-ditch effort to woo Sikh voters.

An SGPC employee, preferring anonymity, said that recently, special meetings were conducted jointly by the SGPC and senior SAD leaders with the staff members asking them to support SAD candidates in the poll.

Congress MP Gurjeet Aujla, contesting for the third term, said the advancing of the ‘saroop’ display was deliberate. “SAD, which has lost its Panthic ground, has attempted to encash on Sikh sentiments by making this move, but it was not going to work,” he said.

AAP candidate and minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal stated that the SGPC has tried to please its “political bosses” by scheduling the ‘saroop’ display ahead of the poll.

BJP candidate Taranjit Singh Sandhu’s media adviser Sarchand Singh viewed that though Operation Bluestar has to be criticised strongly, the SAD, through the SGPC, has made this move to gain votes.

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#Darbar Sahib Amritsar #Golden Temple Amritsar #Guru Granth Sahib #SGPC #Sikhs


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