Amritsar: Six people were injured in a scuffle between Sikh radicals and the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandak Committee (SGPC) task force at the Golden Temple complex here on Saturday as a shutdown call was given to mark the 31st anniversary of the Indian Army’s Operation Bluestar. Sources said that amidst slogan shouting of ‘Khalistan zindabad’ at the Akal Takht in the Golden Temple, there was a scuffle between the radicals and the SGPC task force. In the melee, six people were injured.
“There were around 15 youths who were raising pro-Khalistan slogans and clashed with the task force. A few of them got injured,” Commissioner of Police Jatinder Singh Aulakh told reporters. He said besides this minor scuffle, no untoward incident was reported in the city.
Police also rounded up 25 youths for raising Khalistan slogans near the Golden Temple. Shiromani Akali Dal leader and former MP Dhian Singh Mand had led party activists in a protest, as the party’s Amritsar chief Simranjit Singh Mann is in a hospital in Chandigarh. Police had made elaborate arrangements to prevent any untoward incident during the anniversary of Operation Bluestar.
Earlier in the day, Jathedar Akal Takht Gurbachan Singh, addressing a gathering, slammed the then union government led by Indira Gandhi, saying the Sikh community still remembers the unhealed wounds of Operation Bluestar. Family members of slain leader Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale were honoured on the occasion.
Scores activists of radical Sikh organisation Dal Khalsa also carried out a protest march in the city and observed the day as ‘genocide remembrance’. Kanwar Pal Singh of the Dal Khalsa claimed there was a complete and peaceful shutdown in the city.