Nagpur: “India is a secular country and we the citizens liven harmony and peace. However if anyone hurts our religious sentiments, we will not take it lightly,” unanimously said the members of Sikh community here in the city on Monday while taking out a peace rally in protest against recent incident of sacrilege caused to their religion contained in Holy Guru Granth Sahib in Punjab.
Hundreds of city-based Sikh community members including women took out a peaceful rally, starting from Baba Budhaji Nagar Gurdwara, Teka Naka, Kamptee Road, on Monday morning and culminating at Samvidhan Chowk, Civil Lines in the city. The committee members of as many as 5 Gurudwaras led the rally in which women members of the community were witnessed as singing Gurubani and chanting Waheguru in devotion to their religion.
It may be recalled here that the religious sentiments of our Sikh brethren got hurt by some unscrupulous elements tearing out certain pages of the Holy Guru Granth Sahib in ceratin village of Punjab. Over the next few days, incidents of sacrilege occurred in Kohrian village (Faridkot), Mishriwala village (Ferozepur), Ludhiana, Gurusar Mehraj village (Bathinda) and Sarai Naga village (Muktsar). A total of six persons linked to five of the seven incidents are now in police custody.
According to sources, over half-dozen instances of desecration of the holy book of the Sikhs, Holy Guru Granth Sahib, within a span of a couple of weeks in Punjab could not have been merely a coincidence. The sheer timing of these acts of sacrilege and the attempts to point an accusing finger were enough indicators that there was a concerted move to disturb peace in Punjab.
Even as the mainstream media kept its focus on the Bihar elections and the unfortunate communal incident at Dadri, Punjab went through a tense period with blockages of roads and railways, bandh calls, and clashes between the police and protesters, which culminated in the death of two young men in police firing on October 14. A cornered government ordered a judicial inquiry into the police firing, announced an unprecedented one crore rupees reward to anyone giving clues leading to the arrest of culprits responsible for sacrilege and ordered withdrawal of police cases against the protestors, added the sources.
However, after exhibiting their the angst, the community members peacefully dispersed the rally.