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Akali Dal 1920 slaps notice to SGPC to call budget session forthwith

AMRITSAR: Akali Dal 1920 led by former Punjab Assembly Speaker Ravi Inder Singh here today slapped notice to the SGPC president Avtar Singh to call session of old house of 2004 to pass the annual budget of SGPC.

Talking to media, senior vice president of Akali Dal 1920 Ragubir Singh Rajasansi said today he along with 15 members of old House of 2004 through SGPC superintendent Harvinder Singh served notice, wherein SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar asked to call the SGPC members who were elected in 2004 for budget session, since the formation of new SGPC Board still awaited and in the light of present circumstances of SGPC it became mandatory to hold budget session with the old house.
Ragubir Singh said that nevertheless to say that SGPC elections were competed September 18th last year in 2011, wherein 170 members were elected by Sikh community and thereafter 15 members were nominated with this total strength went 185. But the election of eleven executive members and then election of next SGPC president yet to be made subject to the notification issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs which is still awaited.

Members said that till the election of 11 executive members to be made by the 170 elected members of SGPC and election of next SGPC president, the old house of 2004 SGPC was fully empowered to hold budget session to pass the annual budget otherwise the functioning of all the education and Health institutions being run by SGPC would be paralyzed. Ragubir Singh said that if SGPC President Avtar Singh Makkar fails to call the meeting of old house in the next fifteen days, then they would reach at the Teja Singh Samundri Hall (the mini Sikh parliament) to give call to all SGPC members who were elected in 2004 to hold the budget session.

However, with this development the law and order may slip out of control if these fifteen members of Akali Dal 1920 forcible entered in the SGPC complex to hold the meeting of SGPC members. However, SGPC President Avtar Singh said that nobdy would be allowed to disturb the sanctity of this holy place. He said that SGPC is determined to hold budget session in time as it would be before March 31st.

He said that SGPC running numerous educational institutions besides medical colleges besides managing numerous Sikhs shrines in and outside Punjab and to run the administrative system smoothly. Makkar said that SGPC was facing crisis and was unable to run the affairs as it has 111 schools, colleges, hospitals, one university and 78 Gurdwaras spread in three statesPunjab, Haryana, Himachal and Chandigarh.

But Makkar said the process of the formation of new house to be completed before 31stMarch which would hold the budget session.that it would be done after the formation of executive committee would pass the budget before 31st of March. Makkar said that SGPC has already asked the Union Home Ministry to allow SGPC to call the session which required notification to be issued by the Indian Home Ministry. He said that after Centre’s notification, SGPC session to be called to elect the Executive body of SGPC and next President; all process would be completed well in time before the budget session. Notification issued by the Union Home Ministry would direct the Deputy Commissioner Amritsar to hold election of SGPC president and Executive body in his supervision.

It was SGPC Secretary Dilmegh Singh who had filed the Speical Leave Petition in the Supreme Court seeking directions for the formation of new House wherein Court extended relief to SGPC while allowing calling the SGPC session to elect the next body of SGPC.

On the other side, Sehajdhari Sikh Party President Dr. P. S. Ranu alleged that the Akali leadership was misinterpreting the interim directions of the Supreme Court before the media and trying to create a cloud of confusion on the legal status of the SGPC. He said that according to the order of the Supreme Court dated 17 feb 2012 no directions had been given to the Union of India for holding any election of the office bearers as claimed by the President of SGPC in the media.

The SGPC has approached the Supreme Court of India by filing SLP(C) No. 6243/2012 titled SGPC versus Sehajdhari Sikh Federation and others where the main prayer before the Supreme Court sought stay on the Judgment of the Full Bench of Punjab & Haryana High Court dated 20.12.2011 in Sehajdhari Sikh voting rights issue where the Full bench of Justice Suryakant quashed the notification dated 8.10.2003 issued by the Central Govt. debarring the Sehajdhari Sikhs to vote in SGPC.

Dr. Ranu said that it is unfortunate that SGPC is facing precarious situation as the newly elected SGPC is a dead House on ventilator and now the Sikh leadership should try to appreciate the factum of the legal status of the SGPC and try to approach the authorities for fresh elections inclusive of Sehajdhari Sikh voters and till that time the Highest Sikh Authority Akal Takht Sahib Jathedar should be allowed to handle the affairs of the SGPC as an Administrator.

News Source: Punjab Online

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