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Patna HC reinstates Sarna-led gurdwara committee at Patna Sahib

Ex-SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar had taken charge again as chief just three days back, after a local court had held the September 3 elections as illegal.

punjab Updated: Nov 22, 2017 16:31 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amritsar
Patna HC,gurdwara committee,Patna Sahib
Harwinder Singh Sarna

In a jolt to the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and former SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar who resumed duties as chief of Takht Patna Sahib, managing committee just three days ago, the Patna high court, on Tuesday, reinstated the new elected committee led by SAD (Delhi) leader Harwinder Singh Sarna.

Sarna was elected as president of the panel for a 30-month term on September 3, replacing Makkar. The result was seen a comeback for SAD (Delhi) after Sukhbir Singh Badal-led SAD had ousted them from the DSGMC for two consecutive terms.

However, a district court in Patna held the elections illegal and Makkar had taken charge again on November 18. Sarna had challenged the district court’s ruling in the Patna high court. While speaking to Hindustan Times, Sarna said “On Tuesday, the HC stayed the local court’s decision and reinstated the committee led by me. The HC has legitimised the elections during which I was elected as president.”

“It is a victory of truth and defeat of anti-panthic forces,” said Harwinder, expressing pleasure over the ruling.

Makkar had overruled Sarna’s decisions

In the three days since taking charge again, Makkar had scrapped all decisions taken during Sarna’s regime. He also scrapped the Sarna-led new committee. Unlike Sarnas who advocated the celebration of Guru Gobind Singh’s birth anniversary) on January 5 next year as per the original Nanakshahi calendar, Makkar insisted that the anniversary would be observed on December 25 as per the modified Nanaksahi calendar.

A 14-member committee elects the president of the Patna Sahib Gurdwara Committee. While five members of the panel are nominated by the SGPC, DSGMC, gurdwaras in Uttar Pradesh, Kolkata and Madhya Pradesh and two by the Bihar government. The remaining are elected from among the residents living near the Patna sahib gurdwara.

Besides managing the gurdwara, which is the birth place of 10th Sikh master Guru Gobind Singh and is one of the five temporal seat of the Sikhs (Takhts) , the committee also runs three schools.

First Published: Nov 22, 2017 16:30 IST