Sikh community protests
demanding action into
Golden Temple incident

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SRINAGAR: Members of the Sikh community on Sunday staged a demonstration demanding action over the attempt of sacrilege at Golden Temple.

A local man said, “This is not the first incident. Many such activities have been taken place across the country. There is some anti-Sikh element is involved.”

A man was beaten to death in an altercation by angry devotees after he allegedly attempted to commit sacrilege at the Golden Temple in Amritsar, earlier on December 18.

The incident took place during evening prayers when the man jumped over the metal railing around the Guru Granth Sahib and allegedly attempted to desecrate the Holy Book of the Sikhs with a sword.

Sikhs in Srinagar protest Sunday against the alleged sacrilege attempt at Golden Temple Saturday. (ANI photo)

Meanwhile, an unidentified man was allegedly beaten to death by locals at Nizampur in Punjab’s Kapurthala district on Sunday for allegedly disrespecting the ‘Nishan Sahib’ at the village Gurudwara.

A video of people beating up the man who allegedly attempted sacrilege with the Nishan Sahib has gone viral on the Internet. He was later handed over to the police but some people reportedly insisted that the man be questioned in front of them and the man was allegedly beaten to death in an ensuing scuffle. (ANI)

It may be recalled that a man was beaten to death in India for allegedly trying to commit an act of sacrilege at the Golden Temple, the holiest shrine of the Sikh faith.

Local media reported that the unidentified man jumped over a railing into the temple’s inner sanctum during Saturday evening prayers in the northern city of Amritsar.

Broadcaster NDTV said the man tried to grab a sword kept in front of the Guru Granth Sahib, the Sikh holy book, when he was stopped by worshippers and later beaten to death.

Punjab state chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi condemned the man’s “most unfortunate and heinous act” in a series of tweets from his office late Saturday.

AMRITSAR:  Devotees and members of Sikh organizations protesting outside the Teja Singh Samundri Hall Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) head office demanding the accused of the sacrilege attempt at Golden Temple be handed over to them, on December 18, 2021 in Amritsar, India. (Photo courtesy by Sameer Sehgal/Hindustan Times/Sipa USA

Channi also ordered a probe to find out the “underlying motive and real conspirators behind the dastardly act.” Defence of the Guru Granth Sahib and Sikh shrines against desecration is a highly sensitive issue for the community.

Former Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her Sikh bodyguards in 1984 after she ordered a brutal army assault on the Golden Temple to flush out separatists.

Her killing sparked a bloody pogrom in the capital New Delhi which left nearly 3,000 Sikhs dead.

In 2015, a controversial biopic of Sikhism’s founder Guru Nanak was pulled after protests prompted by his depiction in human form, which is against the tenets of the religion.

And a group of Nihang — a warrior order within the Sikh faith — tortured and killed a man on the outskirts of New Delhi in October after accusing him of desecrating the holy book.

Policemen stand guard outside the Golden Temple in Amritsar on December 19, 2021, a day after a man was beaten to death for allegedly trying to commit an act of sacrilege at the holiest shrine of the Sikh faith.

The incident occurred during the daily evening prayer on Saturday, media reported, after the man jumped over a railing inside the inner sanctum and attempted to grab a sword that was kept near the Guru Granth Sahib, the Sikh holy book.

TV footage showed people inside the temple rushing to stop him. Police told New Delhi Television that the man was killed after the incident and they were checking CCTV footage to glean more information.

“The man, about 20 to 25 years of age, had a yellow cloth tied on his head and jumped the fence … the people inside held him and escorted him out to the corridor where there was a violent altercation and he died,” Parminder Singh Bandal, deputy commissioner of Amritsar police, told the channel.

The chief minister of Punjab state, where Amritsar is located, strongly condemned the incident, calling it the most “unfortunate and heinous act to attempt sacrilege,” his office tweeted late on Saturday.