Equating the Akal Takht jathedar with khap panchayat leaders for allegedly issuing diktat on social boycotts, Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (ad hoc) leader Didar Singh Nalwi has demanded convening of a Sarbat Khalsa congregation to debate relevance of ex-communications in the modern times.
HSGMC senior vice-president Nalwi said that ordering boycott of an individual amounts to violation of human rights and even the Sikh religious leaders should not be above law of the land.
“The Akal Takht jathedar’s decision of absolving Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh of all charges, including alleged blasphemy, reflects misuse of a revered Sikh institution by the Akalis of Punjab. If holding the dera head guilty in 2007 was right then the manner in which he is suddenly discharged of all said charges after eight years is equally questionable,” Nalwi told Hindustan Times.
He said that in the past, leaders like SS Barnala and Buta Singh were also accorded ‘tankha’ or religious punishment by the Akal Takht for their alleged misconduct and absolved only after they underwent the prescribed punishment.
However, Nalwi questioned proceedings of ex-communication against the Dera head, saying these were politically motivated. “He is not following Sikhism but heads a sect. Can he be subjected to any religious punishment and complete social boycott? Unfortunately, the jathedar has belittled the institution by issuing such diktats,” said Nalwi.
Chief Khalsa Diwan supports Akal Takht decision
Amritsar: Chief Khalsa Diwan on Sunday supported the Akal Takht decision of pardoning Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh for blasphemy.
Diwan president Charanjit Singh Chadha, in a statement here, said the Akal Takht was the supreme authority for Sikhs and its orders must be obeyed. Its decisions are always in the interest and welfare of the Sikh community, he added, while appealing to all Sikhs to abide by the verdict.
Saying Ram Rahim had tendered a written apology along with a CD, Chadha observed that the religious issue shouldn’t be linked to politics. The decision was endorsed at the meeting of the Diwan, a Sikh body that runs educational institutes, besides an orphanage.