Amritsar — India

All India Sikh Students Federation in its meeting on 5th October at Amritsar demanded the removal of the High Priest of Akal Takhat Giani Kirpal Singh and of the Head Priest of Golden Temple Giani Sahib Singh. The demand was made at the joint meeting of the adhoc committee and the district conveners of the Federation. The meeting endorsed the decision of the Panthic Congregation held here on September 8th under the aegis of the United Akali Dal that the Present building of Akal Takhat which was reconstructed by the Delhi Govt. should be demolished and rebuilt in accordance with the Sikh norms and traditions. The Federation said the two high priests not only yielded to the armed forces but also lowered the prestige of their high offices by telling lies to the sangat. President of SGPC put a cover to the mass acre of Sikhs in connivance with the government and thus betraying the Panth. The Federation called upon the Sarbat Khalsa to dislodge the present ‘Masands’ who were managing the affairs of gurdwaras.

It was necessary to rejuvenate various Gurdwara Managements. Ina resolution the Federation opposed the revival of the upper house in Punjab. It was demanded that all detained women including Mrs. Pritam Kaur widow of Mr. Rachhapal Singh PA to Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwala should be immediately released. The Federation decided to follow the 12 principles laid down by late Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale which include that the Sikh Religion and Politics are inseparable; the Sikhs in India are slaves and Federation is determined to break the shackles of slavery and Sikhs have every right to arm themselves. The Federation would strive to get the status of holy city to Amritsar. The Sikhs are never aggressive but they will avenge the killings of innocent Sikhs. The Federation will continue its struggle for the protection of distinct identity of the Sikh community. The federation opposed the inclusion of any Hindu in the cabinet. According to intelligence sources the Federation activists who went underground after the “Operation Bluestar” also attended the meeting. Mr. Tarlok Singh, father of Satwant Singh, alleged killer of Mrs. Gandhi and widow of Bhai Amrik Singh also attended the meeting. The Federation decided to start Akhand Path at Manji Sahib in the Golden Temple complex. Bhog will be held on Oct 31st in memory of S. Beant Singh and other innocent people killed after the death of Mrs. Gandhi.

The members took oath at the Golden Temple Aritsar to follow the Principles of Late Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, and Bhai Amtik Singh for the betterment of the Sikh Panth. It was decided to submit memorandum to Punjab Govt from the party seeking the release of all detained Sikhs and withdrawal of the cases against them. According to circles close to Akalis, Govt. in Punjab approached central govt. regarding the question of release of both arrested under National Security Act under anti-terrorist measures. Not more than a dozen Sikhs were actually released out of 224 against whom the detention orders were withdrawn because other cases are still pending against them. According to police sources more than 2 thousand Sikh men are still behind bars. The New Akali Govt. has constituted a committee under the chairmanship of a retired judge, Mr. Justice Ajit Singh Bains to review the cases of all those Sikh young men who are still under detention. The committee asked the govt to report within one month whereas the arrests of the workers of all India Sikh Students Federation are still continuing. Some Federation workers including its two district level leaders were arrested while coming out of the Golden Temple after attending the meeting on Oct 5, 1985. Another Federation activist was arrested from Kapurthala and 3 others from Malerkotla and district of Sangrur.

All of them were remanded to police custody for interrogation for 10 to 20 days.

Article extracted from this publication >>  October 11, 1985