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HindustanTimes Mon,22 Sep 2014

Akal Takht restrains HSGMC office bearers from functioning

PTI  Amritsar, July 27, 2014
First Published: 17:52 IST(27/7/2014) | Last Updated: 08:43 IST(28/7/2014)

In a fresh directive, Akal Takht, the supreme temporal body of Sikhs, on Sunday restrained from functioning the newly elected office bearers of Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (HSGMC).

It also instructed that Amritsar-based SGPC will continue to manage the day-to-day affairs of some 25 big Sikh shrines in Haryana, with an average annual income to the tune of Rs. 30 crore, and directed all Sikh outfits and parties not to issue any statements to media till the row over the creation of separate HSGMC is "resolved amicably".

The direction came a day after the Akal Takht intervened in the standoff and directed that congregations of Sikhs here and in Karnal against the formation of a separate Gurdwara Management Committee in Haryana be called off even as the HSGMC elected its new office bearers.

While the meetings were cancelled, Akal Takht head Gurbachan Singh on Sunday asked the Sikh leaders in Haryana not to disturb the previous administrative system run by Amritsar-based SGPC to manage Sikh shrines in Haryana.

"A crisis was created recently which led to unrest among the Sikh community, especially after the formation of HSGMC by the Haryana government," a statement quoting Singh said.

Virtually giving gag orders, Singh directed all Sikh organisations and Sikh political outfits not to make statements before media till the SGPC row is resolved amicably.

"Let the affairs of management of all Haryana based Sikh shirnes be managed by the Amritsar-based SGPC so as to maintain peace and harmony," Singh said.

"The management of Haryana based Gurdwaras will be in the hands of Amritar-based SGPC which was looking after in the past and nobody would interfere in the previous management", he directed.

With the fresh directives, the Akal Takht head had restrained the newly formed eleven-member committee, including president of Jagdish Singh Jhinda and other office bearers to begin functioning of newly announced separate HSGMC.

On July 16, the Akal Takht had excommunicated Haryana Sikh Leaders including finance minister Harmohinder Singh Chatha, Jagdish Singh Jhinda and Didar Singh Nalwi from Sikh Panth (community) on charges of defying the directive of the Akal Takht and forming separate Haryana Sikh Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee.

The Haryana Assembly had at its session here on July 11 passed the Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Management Bill 2014 to which Governor Jagan Nath Pahadia gave his assent on July 14 despite opposition from SGPC leaders from Punjab.

Haryana government refused to pay heed to Centre's directive to revoke the law that Punjab has termed "unconstitutional" and "illegal".

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