Dodging the police force deployed in the town, radical Sikh religious preacher Baljit Singh Daduwal started a three-day religious congregation in Bunga Sahib gurdwara in Kot Shamir town near here.
Hoodwinking the police force, Daduwal entered the gurdwara early in the morning and in the presence of a large number of followers from the town as well as other towns of the district started the congregation.
Meanwhile, irked at the police administration having objected to permission for holding the congregation at an open place in the town, residents didn't allow the police to enter the gurdwara throughout the day and Daduwal’s followers remained deployed at the gate to ensure this.
With the police force was still deployed outside the gurdwara, Daduwal will remain inside the gurdwara premises for the next two days as the religious congregation will conclude on Sunday.
Daduwal said that it was surprising that they needed to seek permission for holding religious functions and, despite having applied for the same, the administration didn’t respond. Leader of the newly-floated United Akali Dal Bhai Mohkam Singh and Sikh religious preacher Avtar Singh Sadhanwale also attended the congregation.
Meanwhile, the presence of a large number of residents of the town has also come as an embarrassment for the local SGPC member Amrik Singh Kotshamir, who has taken over Jandalisar Sahib gurdwara near the town after Daduwal’s arrest and had claimed support of residents for this.
Before his arrest in August, Daduwal had been managing the Jandalisar Sahib gurdwara.
Kotshamir, however, said that Daduwal was getting support from Congress and people gathered in the gurdwara were Congress workers of the town.
Superintendent of police (headquarters) Jasvir Singh said that permission was denied for holding congregation at a private place but not at the gurdwara, so there is no issue if Daduwal conducted the congregation in the gurdwara.
Admitting that it was a failure of the police administration, a police official, when asked about Daduwal having succeeded in organising the event, quipped: “Kade kade iddan vi ho janda hai ji (It also happens sometimes that the police don’t come to know)”.
Additional deputy commissioner, Sumeet Jarangal said that the permission for holding a congregation at the private premises was denied after feedback from the police that holding such a congregation might create a law and order problem.
“There was no mention about the gurdwara and there should be no issue if everything went peacefully in the congregation in the gurdwara,” he said.