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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Latest Breaking News from Punjab - Sunday 17th June 2007

Sant Samaaj bodies to court arrest from June 19

FATEHGARH SAHIB: The Sant Samaaj on Sunday reiterated their ultimatum given to Punjab government to arrest dera Sacha Sauda head Baba Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh before June 18 or face the agitation by Sikhs.
The constituents of the Sant Samaj led by Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa head of Damdami Taksal and Baba Sarabjot Singh Bedi president Sant Samaj said that they would court arrest if the police does not arrest the chief by June 18. Harnam Singh Khalsa said that first jatha of religious leaders would leave Fatehgarh Sahib to court arrest at Civil Secretariat at Chandigarh on Tuesday when legislature assembly will be in session.
Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa, chief of Damdami Taksal said that this decision was taken in a meeting organised at Gurdwara Karamsar Rara Sahib recently . He said that a five member committee has been constituted to court arrest in a phased manner.
The meeting was considered significant in view of approaching deadline given by radical Sikh organisations of the state for the arrest of Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh who according to them had committed an act of blasphemy by trying to mimic the methods of tenth Sikh Guru Gobind Singh.
Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa said that all the constituents of the Sant Samaj were unanimous about starting a 'peaceful action plan' to impress upon the respective governments to ensure that the religious sentiments of Sikhs, hurt by the blasphemous act of the dera chief, were taken care of. "Keeping in view the significance of communal harmony in the state we have decided to start courting arrest in a phased manner from June 19 , in case the police failed to arrest the Baba by June 18. But our action plan will be purely religious and no individual or organisation will be allowed to harness political mileage out of our protest," said Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa.
He claimed that activists and office-bearers of various radical Sikh religious organisations, who had gone abroad or to other states had been asked to return to their native places so that the chain of arrests is maintained till the Baba is arrested.
Sant Daya Singh, Baba Makhan Singh Tarna Dal, Baba Hari Singh Randhawa, and Baba Paramjit Singh Mahalpur, besides chief of Damdami Taksal and president Gurmat Sidhant Parchar Committee Baba Haranam Singh Khalsa have been inducted in the committee to draft the programme of courting arrests.

Copies of magazine confiscated

Amritsar, The police today confiscated copies of a controversial magazine, “Shamsher-e-Kaum”, from book stalls across the city. The matter has been brought to the notice of the administration.
The cover of the latest edition of the magazine carries a derogatory sketch of Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, besides that of Swami Ashutosh, head of Divya Jyoti Jagran, and Hardev Singh of the Nirankaris. SSP Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh said though copies of the magazine had been confiscated from stands, no ban had been imposed.

Controversy over ‘naam charcha’

Sangrur, Tension gripped Bahadurpur village, 4 km from here on the Sangrur-Barnala road, regarding the proposed “naam charcha” by a follower of Dera Sacha Sauda, Mohinder Singh, at the village tomorrow. The proposed “naam charcha” will be held as part of the bhog ceremony of the follower’s wife, who had died some days ago due to illness.
Heavy police force has been deployed around the village and the police is patrolling the area.
The dera follower had also reportedly asked for the bir from the village gurdwara, but the gurdwara management declined to do so.
Mohinder Singh has also complained to the police that the villagers were neither giving him Guru Granth Sahib for the bhog ceremony of his wife nor allowing him to organise “naam charcha’.

10 Dera Followers Arrested

(Bathinda) Police has arrested 10 dera followers who attacked on Sikhs as well as on police personal in Bathinda on 14 and 15 May 2007. Baljinder Lucky, Albel Singh, Rup Singh, Surjit Singh, Mul Chand, Jatinder Singh, Shera Singh, Manoj Kumar, Gurjand Singh Tailor and Satpal Singh ahs been sent to 14 day Judicial custody by Local Judicial Magistrate. They are Charged U/s 307, 323, 324, 325, 148, 149, 188, 295A for incident of 14 May and U/s 333, 353, 188, 148, 149 and 435 of IPC for incident of 15 May.

Situation Remain Tense in Village Dadu

Dera followers were trying to organize their function therefore situation remained tense. Any calsh was avaoided by local administration as dera followers were restrained from holding their function.

Meetings On for Khalsa March

A series of meetings have started in Malwa Region of Punjab to mobalize the population to take part in Khalsa March to be organized on 24 June, 2007.

Situation is Tense in Village Dadu

Tension again prevailed in Village Dadu as some dera followers attacked on a Sikh. Three persons have been booked by the police in this connection.

Gurmit Ram Rahim is back at it, Jaam-e-Insa in handBut this time, clergy, Badal, panthic lobby are all silent

Twenty-four hours before a panthic delegation was to meet Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on June 11, and at a time when the CM was ingulging in loudspeak about the achievements of his government in the first 100 days since taking over power, Dera Sacha Sauda's head Gurmeet Ram Rahim was back to his idiotic drama: distributing his Jaam-e-Insa once again in total imitation of the amrit sanchar ceremony of the Sikhs.Cocking a snook at the state government which has registered a case under 295-A of IPC (Injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class), and fortified with his newly acquired Z-plus security, murder-accused Gurmeet Ram Rahim virtually challenged the entire Sikh panth on June 10 once again, distributing his roohafza-water concoction called 'Jaam-e-Insaan' to thousands of followers in Sirsa at a huge ceremony.This time, the Sikh clergy did not issue a single statement, most panthic bodies seemed to have resigned themselves to the situation, the Parkash Singh Badal government enumerated the achievements in 100 days, not a single minister referred to what happened in Sirsa, and the issue did not come up at the meeting of the panthic delegation with Badal the next day.How deafening can silence be? When the SGPC members met the CM on June 11, less than 24 hours after the repeat act of provocation, they did talk about Dera controversy but forgot to make any noise about the previous day's developments at Sirsa and instead were keen to convince the CM that SGPC members should get the right to sport red lights atop their vehicles.

The height of the boundary wall of the Dera is also being raised. Dressed in a white kurta-pyjama with a shining red headgear, the Dera chief, himself an accused in case of molestation of young girls, was the first to drink the Jaam-e-Insa. Later, it was distributed among the followers, who had filled up a form and agreed to abide by the rules. The ritual, which began at 7 p.m., lasted an-hour-and-a half and the ceremony was shrouded in complete secrecy. Strangely, the Punjab Congress, which had been somewhat soft towards Gurmeet Ram Rahim in the attire controversy, strongly reacted to his June 10 function.All visitors and their vehicles were checked thoroughly and the height of the boundary wall of the Dera is also being raised. The local administration, too, had positioned BSF and the local police on all roads leading to the Dera.

Badal dismissive of sedition case against Bhai Daljit Singh

Chandigarh: Indicating his government's utter insincerity, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was totally dismissive of the sedition case registered against Bhai Daljit Singh of Akali Dal (Amritsar) and told him to his face that the issue was of no consequence to the government.
Badal was speaking to Bhai Daljit Singh when the latter met him as part of the larger panthic delegation led by DSGMC president Paramjit Singh Sarna on June 11. The delegation's main concern was the issue of Dera Sacha Sauda, but even here Badal had little consolation to offer.
The delegation included, apart from Sarna and Bhai Daljit Singh, Bhai Mohkam Singh, Kanwarpal Singh of Dal Khalsa, Jasbir Singh Rode, Karnail Singh Panjoli, Gurtej Singh, Harjinder Singh Dilgeer, Jaswant Singh Mann and nearly 90 other people.
The meeting at the Punjab Bhawan lasted nearly an hour but virtually nothing came of it. At one stage, Badal even chided Sarna for having supported the Congress, which, he claimed, was behind the dera nuisance.

Sedition case against unknown Khalistanis

Chandigarh, June 16: A day after two Sikh activists were nabbed for conspiring to kill Baba Piara Singh Bhaniarawala in Mohali, the Moga police today registered a sedition case against some unknown pro Khalistan persons for threatening the life of Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim and his followers.A report from Moga today said taking stringent action against attempts by terrorist outfits to regroup and target religious leaders in the state, the district police registered a case of sedition against some unknown pro Khalistani persons in view of some extremely provocative computerised posters threatening Dera Sacha Sauda followers.The move comes on the heels of the Mohali police nabbing former Bhindarawale Tiger Force (BTF) terrorist Sangat Singh Bawani’s son Gurcharan Singh ”Kala” and his accomplice Sawranjit Singh ”Bobby”, a local leader, for planning to kill controversial religious leader Bhaniarawala and forming the Khalsa Action Committee for the purpose.According to Mohali SSP Ranbir Singh Khatra, the two had confessed to the plot and a .455 bore pistol, a .30 bore revolver and two grenades were recovered from them. The duo were nabbed for attempting to snatch police weapons in Bhakhra canal siphon in Jhalliana village and loot a Kurali-based trader.According to the police, Bobby, a rape accused and Kala, an attempt to murder accused, met in the high security Nabha jail where they were pursuaded by former terrorists, including Daljit Singh Bittu, Balbir Singh Beera and Gursharan Singh Gama, associated with Kala’s father, to eliminate Baba Bhaniarawala for alleged desecration of the Sikh holy book some years ago.Bhaniarawala, who was ex-communicated by the Akal Takht, presently resides in his village Dhamana under stringent CRPF cover. The two have been booked under various sections of the IPC, Explosives Act and Arms Act and have remanded to judicial custody.Meanwhile in Moga, the district police has taken strict measures to maintain law and order and protection of the Dera Sacha Sauda followers. A sedition case was registered today under section 124-A after posters appeared on the walls of village Mari Mustfa under Baghapurana police station exhorting the Sikhs to be prepared to lay down their lives to finish off the Dera chief and wipe out his followers from the land of the Sikhs.Police and para military forces patrols were intensified in the rural areas also. The security forces, BSF, CRPF, Commandoes and Punjab Police jointly conducted a flag march in Baghapurana town in Moga district led by the DSP.

Simranjeet Singh Mann's and Wassan Singh Zaffarwal's bail applications rejected

Judicial remand extended till June 28The court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Bua Jee Sansi today rejected the bail application of Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) president Simranjit Singh Mann. His judicial remand has also been extended till June 28.
Alleging torture, Mann said the government and the police were stooping very low while treating him. He has been in jail for the last one month after being booked in a sedition case. Notably, Mann and 20 others, including Wassan Singh Zaffarwal President SAD(Z), were arrested under sections 107 and 151 of the CrPC on May 14 after they had put placards carrying photos of Dilawar Singh, who assassinated former CM Beant Singh, around the statue of Beant Singh at BMC Chowk here.
Mann didn't take bail in this case on May 14 and went to jail. Later after spending five days in jail when Mann was to apply for bail, he was booked in a sedition case. It seemed that the government didn't want that he should come out of the jail at a time when Dera Sacha Sauda issue was burning.
During arguments on the bail application, prosecution argued that Mann and others had committed a serious crime by raising slogans of Khalistan and desecrating the statue of the slain CM. But the defence argued that raising slogans did not invite sedition charges, besides a case was not made out against them according to the facts recorded in the FIR. And the judge rejected the bail application. Mann's supporters said they would now move the High Court for bail.
In the court of Duty Magistrate Sanjeeta, where his judicial remand was extended, Mann alleged that they were being tortured in the jail, and this was political vendetta of CM Parkash Singh Badal.
He alleged that electricity supply was stopped in the jail on many occasions though there were no power cuts and required medical facilities were also not being provided, despite the fact one of the activists had a kidney problem. Besides, they were brought to the court in a stinky rattletrap, he alleged.
Mann, while talking to mediapersons in the court complex, he rapped the police highhandedness in the Nurmahal case. Comparing the SAD government with that of Beant Singh, he said Badal and his family were using police against its political rivals, while during Beant's regime, police was uncontrolled. He said BIS Chahal may be wrong, but the police should not torture him.
About Sirsa dera, he alleged that Badal transferred the premis in the government service to far-off places and this instigated them.

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