Gurdwara turned into a battleground
Gurdwara Santsar Sahib, Sector 38-West, literally turned into a battleground today when the inmates resisted the demolition of an “illegal” floor of a residential quarter there by allegedly firing gunshots and pelting stones at the UT enforcement wing.
The pitch battle against the team headed by the ADC I.S. Sandhu and escorted by the UT Police lasted for almost half-an-hour left six, including the ADC injured.
According to onlookers, everything was fine before the demolition staff entered the gurdwara premises at around 2.30 pm. However, the moment they stepped in, gunshots could be heard and the gurdwara inmates also pelted stones from the top of the building at the team.
The followers, however, dismissed all this as mere allegations and blamed the authorities for breaking the sanctity of the place by entering with shoes and initiating firing.
“The police, along with the enforcement staff, violated the rules of gurdwara and entered inside with their shoes. The cops fired in the premises of gurdwara, which is not tolerable. Our followers are coming from the all parts of Punjab, Haryana and Delhi, if any further activity is taken by the police or administration, they will have to bear the loss,” threatened Baba Sarup Singh, head of the gurdwara.
“The next step will be taken only after discussing the whole matter to the senior leader of Akal Takht Sahib and the Keshgarh Sahib,” he asserted.
Puppy, a gurdwara follower, who was later arrested, claimed: “We had already promised the officials that after the marriage of the Baba’s son, Bhai Gurpreet Singh, scheduled for February 8, we will demolish the illegal structure, even after that they came today and disregarded the holy place.”
The officials, however, claimed that cops fired in air to control the resistance of the gurdwara followers as according to the ADC: “As we tried to enter the building in gurdwara, they pelted stones which hit me then reacting to this, my PSO fired in the air to control the situation. Suddenly, the crowd from top of the building made the condition terrible.”
“We fired in the air to control the situation only after the followers pelted stones at senior officials,” said DSP (South) J.S. Khaira,
Giving the details of the injured persons, the police said that six persons, including ADC Inderjit Singh Sandhu, his personal security officer Jagan Nath, and cops Hukam Chand, Balwant Singh, Ram Rattan and a labourer Chaila Mattu got injured and were rushed to the Government Multi-Specialty Hospital, Sector 16.
It may be noted that after several negotiations between DC R.K. Rao and the gurdwara management during the day, the latter claimed to have been assured of no demolition till February 15. Meanwhile, the police has registered a case under Sections 147, 148, 307, 332, 352 and 506 of the IPC and 25, 27, 54, 59 of the Arms Act against some of the inmates of the gurdwara.