Chandigarh, Oct 26: In a new formula to break the impasse on joint celebrations of the 550th Prakash Purb of Shri Guru Nanak Dev ji in Sultanpur Lodhi, Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Saturday proposed that the SGPC should join the state government’s November 12 event, to be attended by the President, while the main function on November 11, at which the Union Home Minister is expected, could be held under the purview of the religious body.
The suggestion was made by the Chief Minister at his meeting with SGPC President Gobind Singh Longowal here. The Chief Minister had invited Longowal for the meeting at his official residence here. According to an official spokesperson, the Chief Minister expressed his concern, during the meeting, about the lack of unity on this historic occasion, especially in view of the participation of high-ranking dignitaries like the President and the Prime Minister in various events. Underlining the embarrassment this would cause to all concerned, Capt Amarinder noted that the Sikh community had always remained united in such celebrations in the past. He warned that any deviation from the past practice would cause irreparable damage to the community.
The SGPC chief apprised the Chief Minister about the decision of the Union Home Minister and the President to visit Sultanpur Lodhi on November 11 and 12, respectively. In response, Capt Amarinder suggested that the SGPC stage inside the Gurdwara precincts at Sultanpur Lodhi may be used as the common stage on November 11, with the state government also participating in the celebration there. However, since November 12 would have the President participating in the programme, it was apt for the state government to host the Head of the State, in keeping with his status, Capt Amarinder proposed.
This, the Chief Minister said, would help clear the confusion prevailing among the people about the main events, and would also send a positive message of unity among the Sikh community.
Longowal assured the Chief Minister that the SGPC would consider the proposal and revert shortly on the same, the spokesperson said. The meeting was attended by Cooperation and Jails Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, Rural Development and Panchayats Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Technical Education Minister Charanjit Singh Channi, MP Balwinder Singh Bhundar, and Suresh Kumar, Chief Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister. (UNI)