On directions of the Akal Takht, Sikhism’s highest temporal seat, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has formed a three-member panel to probe the issue of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) taking support from Dera Sacha Sauda in the Punjab assembly polls held on February 4.
The Akal Takht through an edict in 2007 banned Sikhs from keeping social, religious or financial relationships with the dera and its followers.
SGPC president Kirpal Singh Badungar told reporters here at Gurdwara Dukhniwaran Sahib on Monday that the panel is headed by SGPC vice-president Baldev Singh Kayampur (Haryana) and comprises SGPC members Amarjit Singh Chawla and Gurbachan Singh. “I have directed them to complete the probe within a week after finding out who had approached the dera to seek support for the SAD-BJP combine. The report will be submitted to Sri Akal Takht, which will take the final action”, said Badungar.
The SGPC, too, is controlled by the SAD. Asked if SAD chief and Punjab’s incumbent deputy CM, Sukhbir Singh Badal, would also be brought under the scanner, Badungar said, “That is the prerogative of the Akal Takht jathedar. The SGPC will submit a detailed report.” He added that the Takht has forwarded a list of SAD candidates who took support by visiting the dera. “Not only those names, the committee will probe the entire issue,” he said.
The probe move is being seen as a step to undo damage in Panthic circles and in view of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee elections, voting for which is on February 26. But Badungar denied any link between the probe and the DSGMC elections.