In a development which is bound to cause further embarrassment to the Shiromani Akali Dal-led government in Punjab, Sant Samaj senior vice-president Sant Sewa Singh on Sunday resigned from its central executive and primary membership, claiming the outfit was working at the behest of the Akali leadership.
Singh, who is from Rampur Khera, announced his decision to quit the outfit he has been associated with since its inception in a press conference here.
He accused Sant Samaj head Harnam Singh Dhumma of playing in the hands of the state government. “Sant Samaj has renounced its principles and politics has taken over religion. Harnam Singh Dhumma is under the influence of the ruling party and is unable to take an independent decision in the interest of the Sikhs. In the current scenario, I find it hard to play any active role in the organisation,” he said.
Blaming the government for the growing unrest in the state, Sewa Singh said such situations arose only during the Akali regime. “Isn’t it surprising that ethnic clashes take place only when the Akalis are at the helm,” he asked.
Accusing the government of denigrating the authority of the Akal Takht, he said the appointment letters of jathedars came from Chandigarh in closed envelopes. The priests should have resigned from their posts rather than acting on the directives of the political bosses, he said.
He claimed that he had tendered his resignation to the Sant Samaj chief shortly after the Akal Takht verdict, but it was not accepted.
“The government sent its emissaries to persuade me to take back my decision, but I refused. The damage could not be undone by resignations but it was a way to register protest,” he said.