Amritsar, March 6, 2014–
Sikh preacher Baljit Singh Daduwal on Wednesday led a march of his supporters to the Akal Takht to seek answers from Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh on the release of Sikh detainees who have completed their jail terms.
Ter med as the ' Jawab de March,' the procession from Kartarpur in Jalandhar district to the Akal Takht sought to remind the jathedar of the commitment he had given to the Sikh 'panth' (community) in December last year after Gurbaksh Singh Khalsa, a for mermilitant, ended his fast-unto-death on the 45th day inside the Harmandir Sahib complex. Gurbaksh Singh had begun his fast on November 14 at Gurdwara Aamb Sahib in Mohali to seek the release of six Sikh militants who were then under detention in various prisons.
The former militant had ended his protest following the release of militants, Lakhwinder Singh and Shamsher Singh, on parole from Chandigarh's Burail Jail. The two were serving a life sentence for their involvement in the assassination of former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh. Besides Lakhwinder and Shamsher, the others in Khalsa's list were Gurmit Singh, Lal Singh, Waryam and Gurdeep Singh, who have been behind the bars in different jails in the country.
DADUWAL QUESTIONS JATHEDAR
While addressing a gathering in the Harmandir Sahib complex, Daduwal sought to remind the Jathedar of his commitment of waging a 'struggle' for the release of all Sikhs who were detained during the period of militancy. He also took a dig at Gurbaksh Singh and sought to know the 'hidden reasons' that led to his calling off his fast.
Daduwal asked the jathedar to provide all the answers to the 'panth' by March 12. He said that if the Jathedar failed, the next line of action will be decided thereafter.
"The Jathedar had lowered the integrity of the Akal Takht by failing to keep his commitment. Still a large number of Sikhs continue to be behind bars. The Badal government too is not sincere about their release," he added.
Daduwal also sought answers from the jathedar on the persons who had 'sabotaged' the struggle launched by Gurbaksh Singh.
He, however, did not spare Gurbaksh Singh, accusing him of having entered into a "secret understanding" without fulfilling the mission for which he undertook the fast. In this context, he pointed out that two of the six militants for whom he undertook the fast were released on parole and are now back behind bars. "No permanent solution has been found to the problem of the detainees," he added.
*HT Media Ltd.