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India PM Cancels Punjab Trip, SGPC And Akalis Upset

Jan 7, 2005
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PM cancels Punjab trip, SGPC and Akalis upset
India Gazette
Thursday 3rd November, 2011
(IANS)

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's much awaited visit to Punjab to inaugurate the ambitious Khalsa Heritage Complex KHC at Anandpur Sahib has been cancelled, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee SGPC said Thursday.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had said the KHC, touted as a landmark monument of Sikhism, would be inaugurated by the prime minister between Nov 15 and 25.

Manmohan Singh, a Sikh himself, had agreed 'in principle' to a request by the chief minister to inaugurate the KHC at Anandpur Sahib, 80 km from here, when the latter called on him in New Delhi in October.

The SGPC, considered the mini parliament of Sikh religion, and the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal have blamed petty politics of Punjab Congress leaders for the cancellation.

'The visit of the prime minister has been cancelled. The Sikh community had bestowed an honour on the prime minister, who is himself a Sikh, to inaugurate this great monument. But his visit has been sacrificed by petty politics,' SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar said in Patiala Thursday.

'The prime minister should not be so weak that he is influenced by others so easily,' said Makkar, sounding bitter.

Punjab Congress president and former chief minister Amarinder Singh had last month written a letter to the prime minister to not come for the KHC project inauguration as it had already been 'inaugurated' in 2006.

Punjab Congress leaders were worried that the prime minister coming for an event for the Badal government and the SGPC so close to assembly elections could be detrimental to Congress interests.

Assembly elections in the state are likely to be held February-March next year and parties in the state are already in election mode.

'It is unfortunate that he PM has said that I am not coming. It was an honour for him, being a Sikh, to inaugurate this prestigious project. The Punjab Congress and Amarinder Singh are responsible for this cancellation of the visit,' Chief Minister Badal said.

The Rs.275 crore project, announced in April 1999, was originally expected to be completed by September 2004 to coincide with the celebrations of the 400th year of the Golden Temple, but the completion deadline was pushed back several times.

In December last year, the Punjab government set the 'final' deadline for July 30 but even that was missed by the authorities.

Boston-based internationally acclaimed Israeli-architect Moshe Safdie has designed the complex, which is shaped like open hands offering prayers. The monument is termed as a 'wonder in the making' and something that has no comparison in the country.

Being built on a 100-acre site at Anadpur Sahib, the KHC is to stand at a site that is the birth place of the 'Khalsa Panth', the present day Sikh religion. The second holiest Sikh shrine, Takht Keshgarh Sahib, is located there as well.

The budget of the project has nearly doubled from its original estimates. Funds for the KHC project have come from the government, Punjab's rich NRI community and religious organisations.

source: http://story.indiagazette.com/index.php/ct/9/cid/701ee96610c884a6/id/200695329/cs/1/ht/PMcancels Punjab trip SGPC and Akalis upset/
 
Jan 7, 2005
3,450
3,760
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
The Chameleon changing colours :

'The visit of the prime minister has been cancelled. The Sikh community had bestowed an honour on the prime minister, who is himself a Sikh, to inaugurate this great monument. But his visit has been sacrificed by petty politics,' SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar said in Patiala Thursday.
PM no Sikh, says SGPC chief Makkar
Khushwant Singh, Apr 23, 2009, 04.32am IST

HOSHIARPUR: Whipping up a huge row on Manmohan Singh's Sikh credentials and in an attempt to counter the Congress party's propaganda on projecting the prime minister as representative of the community, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandak Committee on Wednesday said the PM is not a Sikh, triggering angry protests from Congress leaders.

SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar, who said "Manomohan Singh is not a Sikh'' and kept up the tirade as he addressed an election rally at Hoshiarpur's Roshan ground in support of BJP candidate Som Prakash, added, "Any Sikh connected with the Congress can never be a true Sikh. Giani Zail Singh, Buta Singh, Darbara Singh and now Amarinder Singh are all examples in front of you.

The SGPC said the PM had rejected a list of 20 demands on Punjab and Sikhs some time back. "Even if one demand had been met by the PM, I would have still called him a Sikh who has done something for the community," Makkar said to a gathering of BJP-Akali supporters.

The Congress immediately lashed back saying Manmohan Singh did not need any certificate either from the SGPC chief or the Akalis. Party spokesman Sukhpal Khaira said, "Sikhs supporting the Congress, and who are in large numbers, do not need a certificate from Makkar. In fact, it is most outrageous coming from such a highly placed person and he needs to apologize to the PM and the countrymen, including Sikhs, who take pride in Manmohan Singh leading the country.''

The remark challenging PM's religious belief by the SGPC president seems to be part of a well planned strategy to thwart votes coming from here to the Congress because of the PM.

source: http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2009-04-23/chandigarh/28024990_1_avtar-singh-makkar-sgpc-president-manmohan-singh-s-sikh
 

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
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Jul 4, 2004
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TRUE....The Akalis and even the Akal Takhat tried to get Sikh Parliamentarians.. to NOT vote for Manmohan as PM....but He won the POST anyway..one of the Akali Mps who voted for Manmohan was LIBRA who is now Independent MP...so its all politics of the worst order by badal and Co....
 

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