MEGHALAYA Chief Minister Conrad Sangma on Sunday assured a delegation of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) and Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC), headed by Union Food Processing Industries Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal, that his government would take steps to ensure the safety of Sikhs living in Punjabi Lane locality of Shillong, a SAD spokesperson said.
The delegation, which met Sangma in Delhi, was also assured that the government would come up with an amicable solution to the crisis being faced by the Sikh community in Shillong after locals, and recently even the radical HNLC group, had allegedly issued death threats and warned them to vacate the area, where they have been living for the last two hundred years, added the spokesperson.
The spokesperson further said that the Meghalaya CM said he had established a committee headed by the deputy chief minister which would look into the claims and counter-claims of both Sikhs as well as local Khasis and come up with an amicable solution acceptable to both parties.
Briefing the chief minister, Harsimrat said that an attempt was being made to relocate the inhabitants of Punjabi Lane forcibly, despite a court order staying the proposed relocation. Stating that the Sikhs of Punjabi Lane had been brought to Shillong around 200 years ago by the British, she said they were given land in the area by the Shillong Municipal Board in 1954 after the Syiem of Mylliem, the traditional Khasi unit called Hima, agreed to the same. She said that following this, four additional land ‘pattas’ were given to construct a gurdwara and two temples.