The three-day annual Shaheedi Jor Mela held in the memory of Guru Gobind Singh’s two younger sons — Zorawar Singh and Fateh Singh, who were entombed alive here — began on Friday with the commencement of an ‘Akhand Path’ of the Guru Granth Sahib at Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup Sahib.
Amid the biting cold and dense fog, lakhs of devotees paid obeisance at the historic gurdwaras of Fatehgarh Sahib and Jyoti Sarup Sahib to mark the 310th martyrdom of Mata Gujri and the tenth guru’s younger sons.
‘Dewans’ were organised in all gurdwaras on the first day, and the district administration organised a ‘kavi darbar’ which was inaugurated by deputy commissioner KS Sangha.
Apart from devotees from all over the country, NRIs also made a beeline at the historic shrines, unmindful of the cold.
The ‘mela’ will culminate with the bhog of ‘Akhand Path’ on Sunday. On the last day, a nagar kirtan from will start from Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib at 9 am and reach Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup at around 1 pm.
The police have made elaborate security arrangements for the smooth conduct of the fair. No vehicles are allowed in the town, which has been divided into five sectors. For public transport, three temporary bus stands have been designated. The road medians have been barricaded to manage the movement of people. The police and district administration have also banned the setting up of shops on either sides of the road from Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup to Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib.
Meanwhile, workers of various political parties, including the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), have left no stone unturned to make their conferences on Saturday a show of strength.
This would be the first time that AAP will organise a political conference during the Shaheedi Jor Mela here. According to sources, all political parties, including the Congress, AAP, BSP and SAD (Amritsar), are expected to use the opportunity to lash out at the SAD-BJP combine for the drug menace in the state.
Sources in the Congress said actor and MP Raj Babbar, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president Partap Singh Bajwa, leader of the opposition Sunil Jakhar, former chief minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and Patiala MLA Preneet Kaur are likely to address the conferences.
The AAP meeting is likely to be addressed by local MP Harinder Singh Khalsa, MPs Dr Dharamvira Gandhi and Sadhu Singh, and state president Sucha Singh Chhotepur.
According to cops, the ‘mela’ is more peaceful this year as the district police has set up seven control rooms in various part of the city, and given out helplines for emergency services.