S Asia - Iqbal Haider Condemns Action Against Sikh Community | SIKH PHILOSOPHY NETWORK
  • Welcome to all New Sikh Philosophy Network Forums!
    Explore Sikh Sikhi Sikhism...
    Sign up Log in

S Asia Iqbal Haider Condemns Action Against Sikh Community


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
KARACHI: Former Federal Minister for Human Rights, Law and Parliamentary Affairs Senator (retd) Iqbal Haider has condemned action against the Sikh community in Lahore.

A section of the press reported on July 17 that the Sikh community in Lahore was prevented on July 13 and 16 from performing their religious celebrations in their Gurdwara in Lahore on the flimsy pretext and demand of the followers of the Dawat-e-Islami that such celebrations cannot be performed by them before the holy day of Shab-e-Barat, which was observed much later on the night between July 17 and 18.

“It is most shocking and deplorable that officers of the Evacuee Trust Property Board of the federal government as well as the Lahore police prevented the Sikh community from conducting their religious ceremonies even on July 13 or 16 or before, merely because some extremist militant followers of the Dawat-e-Islami had made this demand,” he said.

Senator Haider emphasised it was the constitutional and moral obligation of both federal and provincial administrations, and the police to provide due protection to all non-Muslims to enable them to perform their rituals, instead of preventing the Sikh or any other community of non-Muslims from performing their religious ceremonies on any pretext whatsoever.

The senator earnestly appealed to all religious parties and Muslim scholars to condemn such acts of extremists, which were causing incalculable harm to the image of both Islam and Pakistan.

He called upon federal and provincial governments to discharge their obligations under the constitution and International Charter of Human Rights, to protect the rights and freedom of followers of all faiths, as well as their respective places of worship to enable them to perform their religious rites freely and without any fear.

“In all fairness the police as well as followers of Dawat-e-Islami must assure the Sikh community and followers of all other faiths that they are free to go to their places of worship and perform their religious ceremonies as was guaranteed by Quaid-e-Azam and also in the Constitution.



1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Re: Iqbal Hadder Condemns Action against Sikh Community

Related story

Pakistani bodies in damage-control mode

by Yukhbir Rana

AMRITSAR: A day after Sikhs in Pakistan were prevented from observing martyrdom anniversary of Bhai Taru Singh by a Muslim group, Dawat-e-Islami, the Pakistan Evacuee Trust Property Board (PETPB) and Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) got into damage control mode. PSGPC organized an akhand path at a gurdwara on Monday to prevent further worsening of the situation.

Meanwhile, Pakistani MP Hareesh Chopra told TOI over phone on Monday, "Our government is committed to protecting the rights of minorities." He assured that the incident would be investigated.

On the other hand, PETPB deputy administrator Faraz Abbas told TOI from Lahore that neither any Muslim group nor the board prevented people from observing the religious day and the ceremony was postponed only by Sikhs for sake of communal harmony.

Former president of PSGPC, Mastan Singh, stated that since Muslim holy day Shab-e-Barat and the martyrdom anniversary of Bhai Taru fell on the same day -- July 16 -- Sikhs decided not to begin akhand path on July 14 as its bhog would ha been performed on July 16.

"We are a minority and have to live in harmony with other communities," said Mastan Singh.

Amidst claims by the two bodies, former president of PSGPC Bishan Singh raised serious objections on 'forcing' Sikhs to postpone their religious function.

Bishan alleged that a crowd had even thrown out musical instruments from gurdwara, which was unfortunate. He questioned as to why Sikhs should postpone their religious day.

President of Nankana Sahib Sikh Yatree Jatha Swaran Singh Gill said certain vested interests wanted to grab the gurdwara property.


Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Shabad Vichaar by SPN'ers

This month we’re celebrating the 10th anniversary of SPN. Most of us are familiar with the shabad “Lakh Khushiyan Patshaian” which is frequently sung at happy occasions. It is probably the most...

SPN on Facebook