Latest Breaking News from Punjab - Monday 4 th June 2007 -
Dera Row SC declines to take up petitions
The Supreme Court today declined to intervene in the Dera Sacha Sauda controversy, saying it was a religious issue on which no writ mandamus could be issued. It also stated that the tension arising out of the situation was purely a law and order problem that had to be essentially handled by the government agencies.
Expressing displeasure over the attempts to time and again invoke the court’s jurisdiction on religious matters, a Bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and D K Jain, stated: “Can we ever say that a person should be allowed to wear a dress in a particular manner? Whatever you have asked for in the petition is for the government to decide, not the courts. Don’t bring a matter to this court in which it has no role to play… like the dress code or the law and order problem,” the Bench said.
This query was in the context of allegations against Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh attiring himself like Guru Gobind Singh. This issue was raised in a PIL filed by Harvinder Kaur.
When Kaur insisted that the apex court had earlier too entertained petitions on religious issues, the Bench said, “We are becoming wiser every day… we are being told to be wise…”
Reacting to the plea of Dera Sacha Sauda counsel Rajiv Dhawan that the deras faced a threat of closure, apparently from Akal Takhat, the Bench said, “Sensitisation of the issue should not involve the court… it is not the court’s job to decide where the BSF or Army should be deployed… for that, you have to approach the government.”
It was also stated that the Punjab and Haryana High Court was already monitoring the case and had passed some orders. SC declines to take up dera petitions
As Dhawan said the problem was not confined to the jurisdiction of Punjab and Haryana High Court but some other states like Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Jammu region of Jammu and Kashmir were also involved, the Bench said, “The genesis of the problem is essentially Punjab.”
After the court had passed an order dismissing Kaur’s PIL and the petition of Dera Sacha Sauda trustee Abhijeet Bhagat, both the petitioners sought to withdraw them, saying they would prefer to move the National Human Rights Commission.
While terming Kaur’s PIL as “misconceived” and Dera’s petition not maintainable, the Bench permitted the withdrawal by recording the statements of their lawyers.
Action on Akal Takht HukamnamaPanthic groups to wait and watch
Various panthic groups today decided to adopt a wait and watch policy about the execution of Akal Takht Hukamnama on Baba Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh of the Dera Sacha Sauda. These groups, in a marathon meeting at the Gurdwara Shaheedan, Model Town, here today took several decisions, including the constitution of a 15-member Khalsa Action Committee with representatives of all panthic groups to chalk out the further course of action.
It was decided to wait till June 18, the deadline of the Sant Samaj ultimatum to the government for executing the Akal Takht hukamnama, which includes the arrest of the dera head, closure of all deras in Punjab and the social boycott of the dera followers. In order to avoid any confusion that might lead to differences among the panthic groups, the meeting placed on record the appreciation for the Sant Samaj decision to court arrest for the implementation of Akal Takht hukamnama.
The meeting, supported the decision of the Sant Samaj to court arrest in case the Baba was not arrested. The panthic leaders made it clear that, as desired by the Sant Samaj, they would not participate in the agitation programme but would be extending the support only. However, they added, they would join the protest in case the samaj wanted so.
The meeting was attended, among others, by Parmajit Singh Sarna, president of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Managing Committee, Daljeet Singh Bittu, senior vice-president of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), Kanwarpal Singh of Dal Khalsa, Jasbir Singh Rode of the Shiromani Akali Dal-1920, Baba Sukhchain Singh of the Sant Samaj, Bhai Mohakkam Singh of the Damdami Taksal, R.P Singh of the Akhand Kirtani Jatha and others.
Ahead of the June 18 deadline, a delegation of the panthic organisations will meet Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on June 11 at Chandigarh to insist upon him to initiate action for the execution of the Akal Takht hukamnama. The meeting expressed regret at the state government not being serious about pursuing the case against the dera head. In case nothing happens till June 18, the panthic groups have decided to hold a route march on June 24 from Dina Kangar in Moga district, where Guru Gobind Singh wrote the Zafarnama, to Damdama Sahib in Talwandi Sabo. A 15-member core committee, named Khalsa Action Committee, led by Paramjit Singh Sarna was also constituted to coordinate activities of various panthic groups and chalk out the course of action.
Count down begins for Op Blue Star anniversary on June 6
AMRITSAR: In the back drop of dera Sacha Sauda controversy, the count down has begun for observing 23rd anniversary of Operation Blue Star conducted by army in the Golden Temple on June 6, 2006.
The chain of Akhand Paths (recitation of Sikh religious scripture) by Dhiromani Gurdawara Parbhandak Committee(SGPC) was started at Akal Takht at Amritsar on Monday The Bhog ceremony of Akhand Path would be on June 6.
The state government has made elaborate security arrangements and alerted the security forces all over the state to prevent any backlash on the issue of dera Sacha Sauda controversy. The radical Sikh organisatons are expected to utilise the occassion to flare up Sikh sentiments against dera Sacha Sauda.
The hardliners have already gven an ultimatum for the arrest of dera Chief Baba Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh by June 18. They have threatened dharna in front of Punjab Raj Bhawan here on May 19.
Every year to observer the memory of operation Blue Star, Sikh community by and large assemble at Akal Takht on June 6 as it was considered the blackest day in Sikh history, said SGPC.
The operation Blue Star was conducted to flush out terrorists hiding inside the Sikh shrine under the command of late Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindrawala, head of Damdami Taksal.
GAGANDEEP AHUJA adds from Patiala that Akhand path of Guru Granth Sahib has started in different Gurdawaras of Patiala district.
Akhand Path has begun in three Gurdawaras under the control of SGPC such as Gurdwara Dukhniwaran Sahib, Gurdwaras nauvi patshahi Bhadurgarh and Gurdwara Khel Sahib. Akhand Path has also started at Gurdwara at Dainthal village. Gurdawara is being constructing in the name of late Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindrawala at Dainthal. Bhog of Akhand paths will be performed on June 6.