Contrary to last year’s celebrations on the occasion of former Dera Sacha Sauda head Shah Satnam’s birth anniversary, the Dera headquarters at Sirsa wears a deserted look this year. Sources said that the Dera has been celebrating Shah Satnam’s birth anniversary, which falls on January 25, for the past 23 years. Last year, thousands of the followers had thronged to Dera headquarters to attend the “satsang” and “bhandara” on the event. However, on Wednesday, about 100-150 followers attended a medical camp which was organised to celebrate the day.
Currently, all senior functionaries of the Dera are either in jail or in hiding because of serious charges, including sedition, following the violence at Panchkula and Sirsa which took place in August last year after the conviction of Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. After the violence, police had been deployed at the Dera and around it. However, the management of the Dera is being run by the followers. Though, the district administration, as part of a preventive measures, has made it mandatory for the Dera management to seek permission before any major gathering at its headquarters.
Few days back, SHO of the local police station had pasted a notice at the wall of the Dera HQ asking the management to seek permission from the administration for any function on January 25. Sirsa Deputy Commissioner Prabhjot Singh told The Indian Express that they have not received any application from the Dera management yet to hold the birthday celebrations.
Meanwhile, in a message through its mouthpiece “Sach Kahoon”, the Dera has asked its followers to arrange “bhandaras” at their respective “naam charcha ghars” and ashrams to celebrate “the holy incarnation day of Shah Satnam Singh Ji Maharaj” on January 2.
HC rejects plea by Ram Rahim’s followers for broadcast of his pravachan at his Sirsa dera
The Punjab and Haryana High Court Wednesday dismissed a plea seeking live or recorded broadcast of rape convict Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s pravachan from the Sunaria jail in Rohtak. The plea was filed by a group of followers from Punjab.
Justice Daya Chaudhary, during the first hearing of the case, observed that another person may come tomorrow to seek a similar relief. “Who were the persons here… cases are still against them,” the bench observed while referring to the violence by Dera followers after Gurmeet’s conviction in August last year.
Bathinda-based Malwa Insan Followers Dera Sacha Sauda Association had approached the HC on Monday seeking arrangements for the live or recorded broadcast of Ram Rahim’s messages or ‘pravachan’ for the followers of Sirsa-based dera from the Rohtak jail. As an interim relief, the followers had also sought a special broadcast on January 25, which is the birth anniversary of Ram Rahim’s predecessor Dera chief Guru Shah Satnam.