The call for demand for summoning former BJP MP Navjot Sidhu before the Akal Takht on charges of ‘distorting’ Gurbani seems to be getting louder each passing day, with the Sikh Students Federation (SSF-Mehta) approaching the Takht jathedar on Tuesday on this issue.
An SSF delegation, led by its state president Paramjit Singh Khalsa, met jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh and handed over a letter to him, listing their charges against Sidhu and urging him to summon the BJP leader before the Akal Takht. SSF secretary general Major Singh and Amritsar district unit chief Amarbir Singh Dhoot were also part of the delegation.
Referring to the BJP leader’s address during the inaugural function of the Jagannath Rath Yatra last week at Ludhiana, the SSF leaders cited a verse from ‘gurbani’ and then pointed to Sidhu’s speech in which he had made a mention of this particular verse. They pointed to the distortions of the verse in the former MP’s speech.
Sikh bodies protest against Navjot Sidhu for misquoting Gurbani
“This is a clear case of blasphemy as Sidhu has distorted this particular verse. Hence, he should be summoned before the Akal Takht at the earliest”, the SSF leaders stated in the letter to the jathedar.
Sidhu, who is currently campaigning for his party in the assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir, did not
respond to calls from HT.
However, when the Peer Mohammed faction of the All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) had levelled this allegation two days back, the BJP leader had responded by denying the distortion charge. The AISSF was the first to call upon the jathedar to summon the BJP leader.
The Sikh clergy is expected to take up the two complaints against Sidhu at its next meeting, slated for early next month. The clergy may let off Sidhu with a warning as any attempt to summon him will only generate another round of controversy between the BJP and its alliance partner, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).
At this juncture, SAD will not like to further annoy the BJP leadership, particularly with the saffron party leading the government in New Delhi. Any action against Sidhu will have its impact in the national capital as the former Amritsar MP still continues to be the Sikh face of the BJP and this has been amply demonstrated with the party using his services in the assembly poll campaigns in Haryana, J&K and other states to woo voters, particularly the Sikh voters.
Sidhu had made a scathing attacking on SAD for aligning with the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) during the Haryana polls. At Ludhiana he had ridiculed the Akali slogan , ‘Raj nahi, sewa’ by claiming that for the Akalis it was just 10% ‘sewa’ (service) and 90% ‘mewa’ (making financial gains).