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SGPC, dera men clash: 12 injured

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Archived_Member16, May 15, 2007.

  1. Archived_Member16

    Archived_Member16
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    SGPC, dera men clash: 12 injured
    Magisterial probe to focus on police role
    Chander Parkash
    Tribune News Service



    Bathinda, May 14
    As many as 12 persons were injured, two of them seriously, when activists of the SGPC and various Sikh religious bodies clashed with activists of Dera Sacha Sauda near the deputy commissioner’s office before noon here today.

    Rahul Bhandari, district magistrate, who along with SSP Naresh Arora reached the spot after getting the information and tried to bring the situation under control, said he had ordered a magisterial probe into the incident. He added that ADC (general) M.P. Arora had been asked to conduct the probe within four days with focus on the police role in today’s incident.

    He added that as per his information the Punjab government had also ordered a probe into today’s incident. The state government had asked inspector-general (IG), Punjab Police, Patiala zone, to conduct the probe.

    The sword and lathi-wielding activists of various Sikh organisations and Dera Sacha Sauda clashed on the Bathinda-Mansa main road when about 200 members of various Sikh religious organisations led by two members of the SGPC tried to burn the effigy of Baba Gurmit Ram Rahim, head, Dera Sacha Sauda, to lodge their protest against the action of the Baba. He had allegedly tried to copy the ceremonies once performed by Guru Gobind Singh at Salabatpura village of this district in the recent past.

    The dera activists, who were already present in large number near the deputy commissioner’s office gave tough resistance to the activists of various Sikh organisations and succeeded in snatching the effigy of the baba from them. In the clash 12 persons, including a sewadar of the SGPC and five activists of the dera, were injured.

    The policemen present at the spot responded very late and resorted to a lathi charge. Following this the activists of the dera blocked traffic on the Bathinda-Mansa main road, demanding registration of criminal cases and subsequent arrest of those members of the Sikh organisations who were involved in the attack and who had tried to burn the effigy of the baba.
    Ram Singh, a senior functionary of Dera Sacha Sauda, while talking to media persons alleged that various Sikh organisations on the instigation of members of the SAD had decided yesterday to burn the effigy. On the other hand, the members of various Sikh organisations alleged that they were attacked with swords and lathis by the activists of the dera when they tried to hold a peaceful protest.

    Bhandari pointed out that on getting information he had sent the SDM and SP(D) to the spot.
    Meanwhile, Civil Hospital sources said only 10 had got injured, one of them seriously.


    Jathedars to meet at Akal Takht today Balwant Singh Nandgarh, jathedar, Takht Damdama Sahib, while predicting that the situation could turn ugly said a meeting of the Sikh clergy would be held at Akal Takht tomorrow to take a decision in this connection. He said a strong decision was expected to be taken by the Sikh clergy.



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  3. gurc

    gurc
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    Sat Sri Akal.

    I do hope that there will be a strong reponse form AKal Takht.
     
  4. simpy

    simpy
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    (simpy previously Surinder Kaur Cheema)
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    hopefuly
     
  5. drkhalsa

    drkhalsa
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    Here is pic that offended many peoples across india


    This is Ram Raheem Singh Head of sacha soda dera Sisra

    Trying to mimic the khalsa baptisation done by Guru Gobind Singh ji


     
  6. ISDhillon

    ISDhillon
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    why is it pink?
     
  7. simpy

    simpy
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    (simpy previously Surinder Kaur Cheema)
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    seems like ruhafza and milk added to water
     
  8. Boota

    Boota
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    There MUST be a very strong one.

    This a direct assault on the Sikh Nation. There are trying to give us a ****** nose by fusing a link with their disgraced organisation.


    The Dera Sacha Sauda in Haryana and its head are under investigation in connection with the murder of a journalist and charges of sexual exploitation of women followers of the sect.
    THE death, on November 21, of Ram Chandra Chatrapati, the 53-year-old editor of Poora Sach (Complete Truth), an evening daily from Sirsa, Haryana, at the Apollo Hospital in New Delhi went largely unnoticed by the mainstream media. On the night of October 24, two men riding a motorcycle, claiming to be followers of a religious sect called Dera Sacha Sauda, had shot at him four times from point-blank range. The sect, headquartered in Sirsa, claims a following of more than one crore people and has branches in many States. The Master of the Dera is Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh Ji, popularly known as Maharaj.

    The activities of the Dera attracted attention in May after an anonymous letter alleging sexual exploitation by Maharaj came to light. The issue was reported by several newspapers, and Chatrapati had consistently written about the Dera's activities since then. The letter, written by a female disciple of Maharaj, or a sadhvi, was addressed to the Prime Minister and its copies had been marked to the Union Home Minister, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Haryana Chief Minister, the Sirsa Superintendent of Police, the National Human Rights Commission, newspapers and women's and social organisations. It was alleged in the letter that several girls had been subject to exploitation.

    The sadhvi stated that she was a graduate and had been in the Dera (spread over 700 acres, or 280 hectares) for the last five years. Her family, being very religious, had sent her there to serve as a sadhvi. She alleged that Gurmit Singh threatened to kill her if she reported the goings-on in the Dera to anyone. He also boasted, as stated in the letter, about the influence he wielded with politicians in Punjab and Haryana.

    It is well known that leading politicians from both the States have visited the Dera to seek the blessings of Maharaj. Prominent among them are former Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal and Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala.

    The letter alleged sexual exploitation of several girls, many of whom had post-graduate and even M.Phil degrees. They were "leading a life in hell due to the superstitious nature and dead faith of their family members", it said, and added that many girls from Mansa, Ferozepur, Patiala and Ludhiana districts of Punjab had returned to their homes but kept quiet out of fear. The three-page letter in Hindi also detailed how a sadhvi from Bhatinda in Punjab, was beaten up by the rest of the sadhvis, when she tried to disclose the deeds of Maharaj. Some 45 girls were living in fear and insecurity but were ready to disclose everything in confidence, the letter stated.

    On September 3, taking suo motu notice of the letter, the Punjab and Haryana High Court directed the District and Sessions Judge to conduct an inquiry. In his report, the District and Sessions Judge suggested that the matter be investigated by a Central agency. The High Court, taking cognisance of the recommendation and the serious nature of allegations, referred the matter to the CBI on September 24 and directed it to submit a report within six months.

    The CBI is bound to take a close look at the statements given to the police by the two men who were caught and handed over to the police by the public for allegedly shooting Chatrapati. During questioning they reportedly said that they were Dera followers from Punjab and had been sent by Kishan Lal, a senior functionary of the Dera, to silence Chatrapati. Kishan Lal was also taken into custody.

    Chatrapati battled for his life for 28 days, first at the Rohtak Medical College and then at the Apollo Hospital. In fact, several local journalists had received threats, but no one took serious note of them. However, Chatrapati did write to the Sirsa Superintendent of Police asking for protection.

    Meanwhile, on November 3, the former sarpanch of Khanpur Koliyan in Kurukshetra district told newspersons that his son had been murdered by followers of the Dera because of the anonymous letter. The murder took place on July 10, he said, and claimed that when the police failed to nab the killers, he wrote to the Haryana Chief Minister for a CBI inquiry and sent copies of the letter to the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, and the State Home Secretary, among others. The CBI will investigate this case as well.

    The motive for the boy's murder and other activities of the Dera are the topics of discussion in Sirsa and surrounding districts. Chatrapati, also being a poet imbued with a reformist zeal, perhaps wrote a bit more consistently than the rest of his fraternity. By targeting him and also by attacking the office of Lekha Jokha, an evening newspaper published from Fatehabad, the Dera seemed to be sending a message to the journalistic fraternity. A total of 11 journalists have been given police protection. Political parties and journalist unions of all hues have condemned the actions of the Dera.

    The Dera Sacha Sauda was set up in 1948 by Shah Mastana from Baluchistan. Conceived as a centre of spiritual inquiry and learning, the Dera stood as a symbol of disagreement with all established religions and orthodoxies. Its beginnings were rooted in a liberal and progressive theology that accepted into its fold many people. This naturally attracted several people. His successor, Shah Satnam, continued the good work and a lot of branches came up in other States as well. But since 1992, when Gurmit Singh took over, the Dera began to acquire a lot of agricultural land, much of it allegedly by coercion. One of the philosophies of the Dera is that it neither receives nor gives donation.

    Today the Dera owns some 700 acres, which extend to the outskirts of Sirsa town, and its spokespersons claim that the main source of revenue is agriculture. A guide points to the Dera set up by the founder, and the girls hostel, which was reportedly built in record time using free labour. What is not shown is the petrol pump, the sophisticated supermarket and a revolving restaurant, to name a few of the entrepreneurial activities of the Dera. It runs a biscuit factory and an ice factory. All this information was gleaned locally and not from the Dera.

    The Dera spokesperson, Dr. Aditya Arora, an ophthalmologist, preferred to highlight its boys' school affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education, its degree college affiliated to Kurukshetra University and a 175-bed hospital in Rajasthan's Ganganagar district. Ganganagar is also the birthplace of Gurmit Singh.

    The main mass of the Dera followers comprises peasants who claim to toil on Dera land for 18 hours a day. Dera followers claimed that the liquor mafia as well as followers of organised religion were working against Maharaj. They regretted the murder of Chatrapati but claimed that he "wrote all kinds of things".

    Arora claims that the Sessions Judge who conducted the inquiry did not meet any of the relevant persons in the Dera. Chatrapati had been writing unprovoked, false and baseless reports, he maintained. "There was a difference between a sex scandal and an anonymous letter. The media should have made the distinction clear as it involved the feelings of 1.25 crore people," he said. Deputy Commissioner D. Suresh was requested to restrain Chatrapati, but nothing happened, he said. Suresh told Frontline that Dera representatives had indeed made such a request and that he had cautioned them not to take the law into their own hands. He added that his office had received several complaints against the Dera, alleging land-grabbing, drugs-peddling and tax evasion.

    A popular movement against the Dera is taking shape, with all political parties demanding a thorough investigation into its activities. In a memorandum submitted to Haryana Governor Babu Parmanand, the Haryana Patrakar Sangh, the Haryana Union of Journalists, the Chandigarh Journalists Association, the Punjab Union of Journalists, the Himachal Pradesh Working Journalists Association and the Himachal Pradesh Union of Journalists demanded a CBI probe into the functioning of the Dera, including its sources of income and
     
  9. kaur-1

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  10. kaur-1

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  11. Archived_Member16

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    The Telegraph - Calcutta : Nation

    [​IMG] Issue Date: Wednesday, May 16, 2007


    Sikhs flare up at Guru in ad

    - Sect depicts leader as Gobind Singh preparing amrit, violates religious tenets
    OUR CORRESPONDENT
    Chandigarh, May 15: The nectar of “humanitarianism” is threatening to rip apart Punjab’s secular fabric.


    Furious Sikhs and followers of an influential sect — comprising Sikhs and non-Sikhs — clashed for the second day over an advertisement showing the group’s head dressed as Guru Gobind Singh and preparing “amrit”, to be distributed among followers.

    The ad released by the Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Sauda, which sparked clashes in Bathinda and left at least 20 injured since yesterday, also issued a code of conduct different from Sikh tenets, claiming it would revive “humanitarianism” among the masses.

    The Sikh religion forbids depiction of any living man or woman as any of the 10 gurus.

    The Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, which maintains gurdwaras in Punjab and other parts of the country, has termed the advertisement “offensive”.

    “Guru Gobind Singh began the ritual of giving nectar to baptise Sikhs or others who chose to become Sikhs. The people will retaliate if someone else starts considering himself to be the guru,” an SGPC spokesperson said.
    The Akal Takht, the highest Sikh temporal body, also voiced anger. At a meeting today in Amritsar, it, however, appealed for peace. “We appeal to all sections to remain calm,” head priest Joginder Vedanti said.

    Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, whose depiction as the tenth Sikh guru triggered the violence, defended the advertisement, saying he was only working towards making a human being better. “If somebody drinks the offering and becomes a better human being, humanity would be the gainer,” he said.

    Yesterday, Dera followers who had gathered at the Bathinda local administration office to protest government apathy, clashed with Sikhs who had assembled at a nearby gurdwara to burn an effigy of Gurmeet.

    “The Dera followers had come with sticks and iron rods,” a district official said.

    Today, apart from the violence in Bathinda where the sect has a large following, Sikhs and Dera followers spilled onto the streets of Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Moga, Patiala, Mansa, Sangrur and Muktsar.

    In Amritsar, followers of the Damdami Taksal, a Sikh seminary, brandished swords and shouted pro-Khalistan slogans to protest against the advertisement.

    The Dera has a strong following in Punjab and played a vital role in ensuring that the Congress was not decimated in the February state polls.

    It had issued a diktat to followers to vote for the party at the request of then chief minister Amarinder Singh, allegedly with an offer to bail out Gurmeet who is facing a CBI probe into allegations of murders and sexual exploitation of women followers.
     
  12. Archived_Member16

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    Sikh Diaspora bashes SGPC, SAD for Punjab violence

    Sikh Diaspora bashes SGPC, SAD for Punjab violence


    By Ravinder Singh Robin

    Amritsar, May 16: The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (SGPC) and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) have invited severe criticism from the Sikh Diaspora over the violent incidents taking place in Punjab and its neighbouring states in the last few days.

    Foreign Sikh organizations were of the view that clashes between different Sikh sects over advertisement in few newspapers showing Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Soudha head Gurmeet Ram Raheem Singh dressed as Guru Gobind Singh, was an outcome of the failure of "Dharm Parchar" wing of the SGPC.

    They alleged that the SGPC officials were working for the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).

    Talking to ANI from the US over telephone, Dr. Pritpal Singh, Convenor of American Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (AGPC), said it was unfortunate to see the SGPC derailing from its path, adding that the SAD and the SGPC were responsible for the encouragement of the Dera culture in Punjab.

    He further expressed disappointment with the SGPC, saying it has been infiltrated for a long time by the anti-Sikh lobby and it was highly unlikely that it would serve the panth now, "because there are too many corrupt leaders in it".

    Harminder Singh, senior leader of Sikh Council Switzerland, said this was high time for Sikh organizations to work together and have a bullet point agenda in bringing Sikhism back. He said the Sikhs living in Europe demand the Indian government to take strict action against Gumeet Ram Reheem to restore peace in the region.

    Gurbinder Singh, a member of the Italy Sikh Council and president of Khalsa Welfare Association, Italy, demanded that the Jathedar of Akal Takhat should take strong stand against the Dera culture in Punjab and should initiate "dharm parchar laher" on war footage.

    While echoing with the AGPC chief, he said it was because of the failure of the SGPC that these Deras were misleading the people in Punjab.

    Ragubir Singh, a volunteer of Gurdwara Sigh Sabah, Paris, said these Deras should be discouraged by the Akal Takhat, as most of the Deras have been violating the "maryada" (sikh code of conduct) as formulated by the SGPC and Akal Takht.

    He further demanded the police must put a ban of the activities of Dera Sacha Saudha.

    Accusing the Dera Sacha Saudha chief of playing with Sikh sentiments, Manmohan Singh Khalsa from the UK blamed Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal for adopting dilly-dallying tactics while dealing with those responsible for making mockery of the Sikh ethos and principles.


    Copyright Dailyindia.com/ANI
     
  13. amritpaln

    amritpaln United Kingdom
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    The Sikh leadership (if you can call them that) have shown no leadership for years. Things have gotten out of hand with cults growing without any check.

    Even now, when it’s too late, they don't act.

    Without leadership there will be no conclusion to this latest fight. Things will die down but tensions will simmer until another trigger.

    Please do not get me wrong but we need to do more in Gurudwara than play harmoniums & tablas. Inspire the youth tell them about gurubani in a language they can understand. Only then will we start to see the end of these cults.

    Sikhs are killing themselves.
     

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