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'Denigration of Sikh Gurus unacceptable'

Terming newspaper advertisement of Dera Sacha Sauda head as big provocation, Punjab chief minister says denigration of Sikh Gurus by anybody was not acceptable.
PTI | By HT Correspondent, Chandigarh
UPDATED ON MAY 19, 2007 12:18 AM IST

Terming as 'big provocation' the newspaper advertisement of Dera Sacha Sauda head, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Friday said denigration of Sikh Gurus by anybody was not acceptable to the people.

He claimed the situation in the state was well under control and appealed to all political parties and religious organisations to maintain peace and tranquility.

"It's a big provocation (Dera Sacha Sauda's head purported appearance in the attire of 10th Sikh Guru in an advertisement in some newspapers)... Everything is acceptable, but the denigration of the Gurus of Sikhs by anybody is unacceptable to the people of the community as also to members of other religions and faiths," he said.

He was talking to reporters in Chandigarh after chairing a Political Affairs Committee meeting of the Shiromani Akali Dal in the wake of clashes between followers of the Dera head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh and Sikhs.

Flanked by other key party leaders, including MP Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Minister Capt Kanwaljit Singh, former SGPC chief Bibi Jagir Kaur and Minister Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, the chief minister said, "What has happened in the past few days is very unfortunate and sad.With such a big provocation, anything bigger could have happened ... But there were only few incidents of violence."

Badal asked the media to exercise "restraint" in reporting the incidents.

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