Updated on: Sunday, December 19, 2021, 04:10 PM IST

What is sacrilege in Sikhism? Here's all you need to know about recent incidents

Golden Temple | File Photo

Golden Temple | File Photo


On Sunday, an unidentified youth was lynched at Nizampur village in Punjab's Kapurthala over the suspicion of an alleged attempt of sacrilege, in the presence of police.

Residents of the village said they caught the man, who is believed to be a migrant, from a gurdwara early this morning. They alleged that he was seen "disrespecting" the Nishan Sahib flag around 4 am, reported NDTV.

This comes hours after a man was beaten to death by angry devotees after he allegedly attempted to commit sacrilege at the Golden Temple in Amritsar.

The incident took place during evening prayers on Saturday when the man jumped over the metal railing around the Guru Granth Sahib and allegedly attempted to desecrate the Holy Book of the Sikhs with a sword.

Meanwhile, DGP Punjab Police on Sunday afternoon said stern action will be taken against all those disturbing the law and order in the state.

"I have taken serious note of the unfortunate incidents in Amritsar and Kapurthala. Any attempt to violate the communal harmony in the state will be dealt with a firm hand. Stern action will be taken against all those disturbing the law and order in Punjab. #PunjabStandsTogether," he tweeted.

Regarding Saturday's incident, Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said that all angles are being investigated and things would be clear soon.

Speaking to the media after meeting with officials, Randhawa said, "It is an unfortunate incident. It seems that the person came with the target of sacrilege only as he was there for eight to nine hours. He has not been identified yet. We will investigate the matter." "He entered alone. We are tracing from where he entered, where all he went through CCTVs installed outside almost every house here. We'll know more in one or two days," he added.

The Deputy Chief Minister also said that the sequence of sacrileges in the past few days across Punjab and the drone activities here are suspicious.

"In 2018, the state government passed and sent a proposal to the Government of India to make a minimum of ten years imprisonment under Section 295A, to whoever causes injury, damage or sacrilege to Guru Granth Sahib, Bhagwad Geeta, Quran and the Bible. I'll write again to the Government of India regarding it," Randhawa added.

An FIR, under sections 295A and 307 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) has been filed against an unknown accused, for the deliberate and malicious intention of outraging the religious feelings and attempt to murder.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Sanjeev Kumar informed that the security arrangements at the Golden Temple has been made and said that the situation has remained peaceful by far.

"After yesterday's incident, we have made security arrangements here (at Golden Temple). Many Sangats come on weekends... although the situation is peaceful," he said.

Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi yesterday condemned the sacrilege bid at Amritsar's Golden Temple and directed state police to "thoroughly probe the matter and find the real conspirators".

Several political leaders have also condemned the act.

What is sacrilege?

The Guru Granth Sahib and everything associated with it is sacred for the Sikhs. They consider the Guru Granth Sahib to be a living Guru, and any harm or disrespect to it is a serious offence for the Sikhs, Dharam Singh, a former professor of Sikh studies at Punjabi University, Patiala, and editor-in-chief of the Encyclopaedia of Sikhism, told ThePrint.

Apart from the Guru Granth Sahib, the gurdwara, the dastaar and the kirpan are also considered sacred. Moreover, touching or disrespecting the hair and the beard maintained by Sikhs also amounts to sacrilege, the report said.

(With inputs from ANI)

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Published on: Sunday, December 19, 2021, 04:10 PM IST