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HC in Pak strikes down auction of ancient Gurdwara’s portion

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Peshwar, Oct 10, 2020-

The Peshawar High Court has struck down the auction of a portion of the ancient Gurdwara Bhai Biba Singh in the city.

On Friday, a bench declared the auction illegal by accepting the petition jointly filed by a member of the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Sahib Singh and five members of the committee of the Gurdwara Bhai Beba Singh, reports Dawn news.

The petitioners claimed that the deputy administrator of the Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB), Peshawar, had held the auction of a portion of the Gurdwara Bhai Beba Singh on July 18, 2016, and issued a letter to the local police on Nov 20, 2018, asking them to ensure the handing over of the possession of that portion to the allottee.

The petitioners added when the police officials came to the gurdwara for possession, they realised that the said partition was inside the boundary wall of the gurdwara and therefore, it was part of the premises.

They requested the court to declare that auction and the subsequent letter written to the police illegal and without lawful authority, while adding that the gurdwara was also a historical site for Sikhs throughout the world.

In December 2018, a bench had issued a stay order and asked the authorities not to drive members of the Sikh community out of that portion until further orders.

The 300-year-old gurdwara is located in the city’s Chakka Gali and was built during the rule of Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

It was reopened in 2016 for the first time after renovation work.  (Agency)

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