Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) chief Avtar Singh Makkar on Wednesday claimed that the Congress was never in favour of debarring Sehajdharis from voting in the religious body polls as it intended to weaken the SGPC.
“This the Congress planned to achieve by giving Sehajdharis the right to vote so that they could vote for those candidates who were close to the Congress and get them elected to the SGPC. The move was aimed at creating dissensions within the religious body and within the Sikh community,” Makkar claimed in a statement issued here.
Dubbing the Congress as “anti-Sikh”, the SGPC president said had it been sincere to Sikhs and the SGPC, it would not have hesitated to amend the Sikh Gurdwara Act to debar Sehajdharis from voting in the religious body elections. The UPA was in power from 2004 to 2014, but no step was initiated to amend the Act despite numerous reminders from the gurdwara body, he added.
“Now that the NDA government has amended the Act and debarred Sehajdharis from voting, the Congress has spoken against the amendment. This shows the actual face of the Congress and its anti-Sikh stance,” he added.
“The SGPC can be safe only if all its members are ‘sabat soorat’ (baptised) Sikhs, and for electing these, only ‘amritdhari’ (baptised) members of the community should be allowed to vote,” he said.