More than a 100 langars (community meals) and a crowd — numbering at least in thousands — marked the second day of the Shaheedi Jor Mela that entered its second day on Sunday.
Devotees made a beeline to pray at Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib and Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup as the administration seemed to be better prepared to tackle the rush.
The second day also saw a host of political conferences and a government rally, which also seemed to have acquired a political hue.
More than a 100 langar halls in and around the city were full to capacity and according to most devotees, the challenge of controlling the gathering was well-handled by the police — at least a lot better than the last time.
Taking a lesson from Day 1, the police managed to ensure that there was no theft or pickpocketing on Sunday.
A release from the deputy superintendent of police office claimed that no case of any accident or theft was reported on Sunday. Roads from Chungi number 4 till the Fatehgarh Sahib T-Point and Rauza Sharif to Jyoti Sarup were blocked for all vehicles —except two-wheelers that had been issued special passes by the administration.
This ensured that it was easier for devotees to attend conferences and visit gurdwaras in the area.
Volunteers of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC)-run educational institutes Mata Gujri College and Guru Granth Sahib World University were seen guiding and helping the devotees. The Shaheedi Jor Mela would conclude tomorrow with the bhog of Akhand Path and end with a ‘nagar kirtan’ at Gurudwara Jyoti Sarup.
On Monday, the last day of the mela, the nagar kirtan would start from Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib. Gurudwara head granthi Harpal Singh said, “At 7.45 am, we will have a 30-minutes religious ceremony of reciting the Gurbani followed by an ‘Ardas’. The nagar kirtan would then start at 9am and end at 1pm at the premises of Jyoti Sarup, where Akal Takkht jatheda would address the community.”
In the so-called ‘Shaheedi Conferences’, the only agenda seemed to be political gamesmanship running across all parties.
The SAD rally saw thinner attendance than the past few years with the Bahujan Samaj Party managing thin attendance. SAD (A) and the Congress drew in a relatively larger gathering, as did the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
The city expects a bigger crowd on the last day of the event that commemorates the sacrifice of the two younger sons (Sahibzada Zorawar Singh, 9, and Sahibzada Fateh Singh, 7) of Guru Gobind Singh, who were bricked alive here on December 26, 1704, on the orders of then Sirhind governor Wazir Khan during the regime of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.
On Saturday, the event had got off to a good start with DC Varun Roojam inaugurated a ‘Development exhibition’.