Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh on Friday met Sikh activist Gurbaksh Singh Khalsa here, “reassuring” him that the issue of Sikh detainees was likely to be addressed by the Centre soon.
Gurbaksh has been on an indefinite fast since November 14 demanding the release of Sikh prisoners languishing in jails across the country. His fast enters 50th day on Saturday.
Gurpreet Singh, a supporter of Gurbaksh Singh, said the jathedar sat among the sangat for about an hour and informed him that a group of religious leaders had met union home minister Rajnath Singh on the issue.
The delegation comprising Takht Keshgarh Sahib jathedar Giani Mal Singh, Harmandar Sahib head priest Giani Jagtar Singh, Damdami Taksal head Baba Harnam Singh Dhuma, former Akal Takht jathedar Jasbir Singh Rode and a couple of other religious leaders had met Rajnath on December 31, who is said to have shown a positive inclination to review the cases of Sikhs who have been under detention for long in cases related to militancy and anti-national activities. The delegation had also submitted a list of 80 detainees whose release was being sought.
Meanwhile, Gurbaksh threatened to stop taking even water from Saturday in case his demands were not met. “The sangat, however, convinced him to wait for the hukamnama on Saturday only after which a decision would be taken. Gurbaksh has left it to the sangat. The sangat will decide after an ardas before the Guru Granth Sahib by choosing between two slips of paper,” said Gurpreet.
Agencies have reported that Khalsa’s health has deteriorated. He has been sitting on fast at the premises of Gurdwara Lakhnaur Sahib near here since November 14.
Speaking to reporters, Khalsa said he would stop taking even water from Saturday if his demand did not get fulfilled and added that he would resist any forcible attempt to admit him to a hospital. All efforts of the district administration to persuade him to end his fast so far have failed. A team of doctors of the civil hospital here examined Khalsa and submitted its report to the civil surgeon. A doctor said his condition was serious and advised his immediate hospitalisation. “Khalsa has lost around 20 kg,” he said.