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Bargari sit-in enters 106th day, still going strong

Men, women and children alight from trucks and trolleys raising anti-government slogans, demanding the arrest of those responsible of sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib and deaths in the Behbal Kalan police firing.

punjab Updated: Sep 14, 2018 09:04 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Bathinda
Bargari,Bargari protests,punjab
(HT Photo)

The sit-in at Bargari in the adjoining Faridkot district entered 106th day on Thursday and there is no slowdown in the number of participants still. The intelligence figure of protesters last Sunday stands at 9,300.

Men, women and children alight from trucks and trolleys raising anti-government slogans, demanding the arrest of those responsible of sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib and deaths in the Behbal Kalan police firing.

A group of women from Loppo village in Muktsar district alighted from a truck, raising slogans: “Behbal Kalan goli kand de doshian nu giraftar karo, Guru Granth Sahib di be-adbi de doshian nu giraftar karo” (arrest the culprits behind Behbal Kalan firing and sacrilege incidents).

“Badal dia tarera kadhan aye haa (We are here to give trouble to Badal),” said Surjit Kaur from a village in Moga district.

Protesters, mainly from the peasantry class and the Sikh organisations , listen to the religious hymns and speeches of the preachers who narrate the “valour” of Bhindranwale and his men during the Operation Blue Star. The ballad singers then narrate the “bravery of the Sikhs in facing the bullets of the Badal regime” during the 2015 public protests against the sacrilege.

Sundays for baptism

Sundays even witness many protesters being baptised by Damdami Taksal. Jaswinder Singh and Satpal Singh, daily-wager mazhabi Sikhs, were baptised on September 2 and they have been serving in the kitchen. “Discourses here made an impact on me and I finally decided to get baptised,” said Jaswinder, adding that he was a habitual drinker and has shun the habit.

Contributions for langar

Around two-dozen villages across Faridkot, Bathinda and Moga have been supplying items for langar ever since the ‘morcha’ was initiated by the parallel jathedar of Akal Takht, Dhian Singh Mand, an ex-MP.

The ration also comes regularly from a faraway village — Maadi Gaur Singh in Tarn Taran district.

‘Nihangs’ in their traditional gear and some even on horses can also be spotted in good numbers at the protest site.

Bhindranwale’s posters popular

Three make-shift stalls at the protest site sell posters, framed pictures and T-shirts carrying images of slain militant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale. “I sell daily around 50 items that have Bhindranwale’s picture on them,” said a stall owner from Amritsar.

First Published: Sep 14, 2018 09:01 IST