Badal meets PM, says memorial like any other gurdwara

New Delhi- Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Home Minister Sushsil Kumar Shinde to discuss the situation in Punjab and also pending affairs of the Sikh community and warned the Centre against interference in the Sikh affairs.

The Punjab CM today made it clear that the upcoming memorial in the Golden Temple is like any other gurdwara and there would be no pictures of any person and no names would be inscribed on its walls.

The Centre and its intelligence agencies see the memorial as a monument that will glorify the pro-Khalistan elements, who were killed in Operation Bluestar in June 1984. The Union Government has already made it clear that it could not “interfere” in the matters of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), which has okayed the construction of a memorial at the Golden Temple complex.

Badal met Shinde this morning where the recent developments in Punjab were discussed. Already Shinde speaking to the media on October 10 has refused to term the recent developments a “revival of militancy” in Punjab.

Later speaking to mediapersons, Badal said the memorial issue was being whipped up needlessly. He termed the amendment to the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) Act as an infringement of the rights of the Sikhs. These powers and procedures have been laid down by Parliament and cannot be changed by notifications. “The amendments are more to suit one person”, he said.

In the evening, Badal accompanied by Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and sought his personal intervention to stop the Delhi Government from going ahead with the proposed move of “Delhi Sikh Gurdwara (Amendment) Bill, 2012” regarding direct election of the president of the DSGMC.

A spokesperson of the Punjab Government quoted Badal as having said this was an “ill conceived and politically motivated move of the Delhi Government, which could pose serious ramifications with a potent apprehension of pushing the country into avoidable conflicts”.