Emotions run high as devotees see bullet-hit bir of Guru Granth Sahib
Devotees jostled for a darshan of the bullet-hit Guru Granth Sahib’s holy saroop as the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) displayed it in the Golden Temple complex for three days from Thursday in the run-up to the 37th anniversary of Operation Bluestar on June 6.
The saroop, which was installed in the sanctum sanctorum at that time, was hit by a bullet during the army action in 1984.
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In a first, the SGPC announced on Wednesday that it will display the saroop and the bullet that hit it for public viewing. The Shiromani Akali Dal-dominated SGPC move comes in the backdrop of the political heat the SAD leadership is facing over the 2015 sacrilege incidents and is being seen as a bid to blunt the Congress attack in an election year.
Flowers were showered on the saroop as it was carried from Akal Takht to Shaheedi Asthan of Baba Gurbaksh Singh, where it was installed for darshan. As word spread, devotees gathered to catch a glimpse of the handwritten saroop.
Shown binding and page of contents
Since its pages have lost strength with the passage of time, it was not opened fully fearing that pages may get damaged. Devotees were shown the binding and the page of contents. The hole made by the bullet was clearly visible.
Following the ceremony, Akal Takht head granthi Giani Gurmukh Singh showed the saroop to the media and emotions ran high when SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur displayed the bullet.
LED screens installed at various points around Akal Takht provided live feed for devotees. The event was telecast live on social media for those who could not visit the shrine.
Shocking and distressing sight: Devotees
Dalbir Singh of Patiala, who had come to pay obeisance along with his wife and son, said: “So far, we had only heard from preachers about the holy bir being attacked in 1984. Finally, today we have seen it. It’s painful,” he said.
Another follower, Amandeep Kaur, a newlywed from Ajnala, said: “I was aware of the army action at Darbar Sahib and Akal Takht Sahib, but not on the holy saroop. Seeing it is shocking and distressing. We never got justice.”