Op Bluestar memorial gets SGPC nod

The work on erecting a memorial to Operation Bluestar would commence on May 20,a few days ahead of the 28th anniversary of what Sikhs call the “Genocide Day” on June 6 — the day that marks the Army operation at Golden Temple.

Written by Anju Agnihotri Chaba | Jalandhar | Published:May 4, 2012 2:59 am

The work on erecting a memorial to Operation Bluestar would commence on May 20,a few days ahead of the 28th anniversary of what Sikhs call the “Genocide Day” on June 6 — the day that marks the Army operation at Golden Temple.

Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa,the chief of Damdami Taksal,has been assigned the task of carrying out the Kar Sewa (building) of the memorial to be erected in memory of those who were killed during the operation in 1984.

Talking to the Indian Express,Baba Harnam Singh said,“The executive committee of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) met at Anandpur Sahib on Thursday and cleared the the construction of memorial.”

“The entire Kar Sewa will be taken up by Damdami Taksal and the work on the building the memorial would start on May 20,” he added.,while refusing to divulge any other details.

It may be noted that the SGPC executive committee had earlier twice passed a resolution to this effect — on February,20, 2002,and on May 27, 2005. However,the issue was put on the back-burner under political considerations.

Irked over the delay,the Dal Khalsa in June 2010 organized a three-day hunger strike in front of SGPC headquarters to press the Sikh temporal seat to honour the commitment.

Succumbing under pressure from radical forces,the then SGPC president,Avtar Singh Makkar,on June 8 last year,constituted a five-member committee to draw up the draft proposal,which included deciding on the venue for erecting the memorial and its design. The committee was supposed to table the report in two months.

However,“suspecting the intentions” of the SAD (Badal),which virtually controls the SGPC,Sikh radical organizations,including Dal Khalsa,Shiromani Akali Dal (Panch Pardhani),Khalsa Action Committee and Panthic Sewa Lehar constituted a shadow committee — Saka Darbar Sahib Memorial Committee — on July 8 to prepare its own report on the memorial.

Meanwhile,Dal Khalsa spokesperson Kanwarpal Singh,who spearheaded the campaign for the memorial since 2003,said that the SGPC has finally heeded to the popular demand of the Sikhs.

He said the proposed memorial would be in consonance with Sikh principles and traditions and would reflect the valour and fighting spirit of those who sacrificed their lives during the Army operation.

About the location of the memorial,he reiterated that the panel formed by four Panthic organisations has suggested that Maharaja Sher Singh Deori is an ideal place for memorial as it still retains the bullets marks of the operation.

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