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Sikhs protest after Haryana CM skips gurdwara visit in Karnal village

The protesters alleged that they were told by the district administration last week that the chief minister will visit the gurdwara in the village at around 1.30 pm on Friday and also partake langar there.

india Updated: Sep 29, 2018 12:26 IST
Neeraj Mohan
Neeraj Mohan
Hindustan Times, Karnal
Sikhs,gurdwara,Karnal
A video grab showing protestors attacking a fire brigade vehicle at Dachar village of Karnal district.(HT)

Tension prevailed in Dachar village of Karnal district as members of the Sikh community held a protest and damaged a fire brigade tender, alleging that chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar cancelled a visit to the village gurdwara on Friday.

The protesters alleged that they were told by the district administration last week that the chief minister will visit the gurdwara in the village at around 1.30 pm on Friday and also partake langar there.

“We were told to remove the statue of Khalistan ideologue Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale in the morning, but we refused to do so, saying this could lead to tension in the village. However, the authorities did not inform us that the CM will not visit if we will not remove the statue,” Janpal Singh, president of the gurdwara committee said.

“We prepared langar for about 1,000 people, including sugar-free kheer for the CM as instructed by the authorities. But at the last moment, the CM’s visit was cancelled and he left after paying obeisance at a temple near the gurdwara,” he added.

The members of gurdwara committee alleged that several people were waiting for the CM at the entrance of the Sikh shrine. They got agitated when the CM left after visiting the temple, they added.

The protesters later damaged a fire brigade vehicle and also raised pro-Khalistan slogans.

FIR against 50 people

Talking to HT, Nissing police station in-charge Jitender Singh said an FIR has been registered against 50 unknown people.

He said there were no reports of an injury during the protest and the situation was under control in the village. Meanwhile, members of the Sikh community have called a meeting in Karnal on Saturday to discuss the issue.

Visits 13 pilgrim places in Karnal

During his day-long visit, Khattar visited all the 13 ‘tiraths’ (pilgrim places) in Karnal district and announced Rs 18.39-crore development works at these places.

The works will be carried out by the Kurukshetra Development Board. He also announced to renovate 134 pilgrim places located in Kurukshetra, Karnal, Kaithal, Panipat and Jind districts, which are mentioned in Mahabharata, Ramayana and Vamana Purana.

Couldn’t visit gurdwara due to hectic schedule:CM

Talking to mediapersons later at Pada village of Karnal, the chief minister said a visit to the gurdwara was not part of his schedule.“I had already informed them that I cannot visit the gurdwara due to my hectic schedule.”

However, in the CM’s tour programme issued by the information and public relations department, it was mentioned that he will visit the gurdwara after visiting the Daksheshwar temple in the village at 1.05 pm. It was also mentioned that he will have lunch at 1.30 pm but the place was not mentioned.

The district administration is keeping mum over the development. Deputy commissioner Aditya Dahiya could not be contacted despite HT’s repeated phone calls.

First Published: Sep 29, 2018 12:26 IST