Parallel Jathedar Mand’s bid to give sandesh at Golden Temple foiled
However, he read out a three-minute sandesh (message) at Gurdwara Baba Deep Singh Ji Shaheed at Pahuwind village, 30 km from Tarn Taran, on Thursday.punjab Updated: Oct 20, 2017 14:51 IST
Punjab Police foiled radical Akal Takht ‘acting jathedar’ Giani Dhian Singh Mand’s bid to reach the Golden Temple and address the Sikh community on Bandi Chhod Diwas and he had to contend with reading out a three-minute sandesh (message) at Gurdwara Baba Deep Singh Ji Shaheed at Pahuwind village, 30 km from Tarn Taran, on Thursday.
Mand reached the gurdwara at 4pm with aides and read out the sandesh, appealing to Sikhs to unite for the release of former chief minister Beant Singh’s assassin Jagtar Singh Hawara, who was named the Akal Takht ‘jathedar’ by radical elements during a parallel ‘Sarbat Khalsa’ at Chabba village in Amritsar district on November 10, 2015. Since Hawara is behind bars, Mand has been given the charge of ‘acting jathedar’, while Damdami Taksal (Ajnala) head Amrik Singh Ajnala was named the parallel ‘jathedar’ of Takht Kesgarh Sahib and Baljit Singh Daduwal parallel ‘jathedar’ of Takht Damdama Sahib. Both were under house arrest on Diwali eve.
As soon as Mand delivered his message, a Punjab Police team led by deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Sulakhan Singh Mann arrested him. Mand was kept in detention at Harike rest house till his release at 8pm.
The DSP said the police had information that Mand was hiding in the area for three days. “We were alert and the area was cordoned off to prevent him from reaching Golden Temple,” he said.
“When Mand and his aide, Satnam Singh Manawa, reached Bhikhiwind Chowk on Thursday, we tried to arrest them but they fled to Pahuwind from where we took them into custody,” the DSP said.
In 2015, the acting jathedar had managed to read out his message at the Akal Takht on Diwali despite restrictions by the police and the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) task force, leading to tension. The police thwarted a similar bid last year.