Security was beefed up in the holy city on Wednesday as also at Chowk Mehta, the headquarters of the Damdami Taksal seminary, on the eve of the 29th anniversary of Operation Bluestar.
While the main commemoration service would be held at the Akal Takht in the Golden Temple complex, the Damdami Taksal would observe the anniversary of the army operation at Gurdwara Guru Darshan Parkash at Mehta Chowk, 40 km from Amritsar.
The anniversary is observed every year as 'ghallughara diwas' (genocide day) to commemorate the June 1984 (June 4-6) army operation to flush out armed militants under the then Damdami Taksal head Jarnail Singh Bhinderanwale from the Golden Temple complex.
Bhinderanwale and most of his associates were killed in this operation, which led to the total destruction of the Akal Takht and a few other structures inside the holy place.
Though the importance of this commemoration function has declined over the years, but still at times Sikh radical groups use the occasion to air their views on an independent Sikh state. Initially, important leaders of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), including Parkash Singh Badal, marked their presence but off late none is seen at Harmandar Sahib on the anniversary.
Amritsar police commissioner Ram Singh said that already ample bandobast had been made and duties assigned to various police officials.
The police officer maintained that police were keeping a close watch and securitymen would be deployed in key areas of the city, particularly in the vicinity of the Golden Temple, where the anniversary would be observed like the previous years.
Meanwhile, the Amritsar (rural) police have also taken requisite measures in wake of observance of anniversary at Chowk Mehta. Amritsar (rural) police SP (D) Jasdeep Singh said,"We have mobilised force from adjoining sub-divisions such as Beas and Jandiala to keep a close vigil at Chowk Mehta."
Apart from policemen stationed there, police patrol teams would be on the move in the Amritsar-Mehta road and along other routes to ensure that no untoward incident took place, the SP added.
Bhog at Akal Takht
Like the previous years, the 'bhog' (religious ceremony) of 'akhand paath' (continuous recitation of prayers from Guru Granth Sahib) in memory of those killed during the June 1984 army operation would be held at the Akal Takht.
Damdami Taksal head Harnam Singh Dhuma is expected to attend the function at the Akal Takht. Thereafter, he would move to Mehta Chowk for attending the function there.
The SGPC task force would keep an eye on the Taksal members currently engaged in the 'kar sewa' of gurdwara Thara Sahib, adjacent to the Akal Takht. As usual, police in civvies would keep an eye on the activities inside the holy place.