Malerkotla Quran sacrilege could be part of deeper design

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Jagtar Singh

Chandigarh, June 30: As the police arrested three persons in the case relating to sacrilege of Quran in the only Muslim dominated town of Malerkotla in Punjab, details surfaced from Pathankot the same day about the Saffron Parivar links of Nand Kishor Goldy and his son Gaurav. As per that information available  that day, while Goldy is activist of Vishav Hindu Parishad, his son is associated with Bajrang Dal.

Now the same has been confirmed by Punjab VHP vice-president Devinder Kumar who held a press conference at Sangrur yesterday alleging frame-up. Their third accomplice is Vijay Kumar. Devinder Kumar said that he had sought intervention by the higher ups in his organisation. The accused are under police remand.

The information that had reached here on the day of their arrest also included the visits by some RSS activist to their residence in Taragarh village near Pathankot. The report quoted the members of the family that the RSS man first took Gaurav to Delhi and then to Chandigarh. That activist is stated to be Delhi-based.

Inspector General of Police Paramraj Singh Umranangal said the provocation was terrorist attacks on Pathankot airbase and Dinanagar. Moreover, Vijay Kumar also confessed that he was earlier involved in a similar incident on Ghaziabad.

It is the motive that hints at deeper design of these forces to create disturbances that could have chain reaction elsewhere in the country, especially in Uttar Pradesh where a strategy seems to be in place to create communal tension leading to divide in view of the Assembly elections next year. The provocative statements have been coming from the members of the Saffron Brigades, including the so called swamis and sadhvis.

Malerkotla is one town in Punjab where Muslims were provided all the protection by the Sikhs during partition of the country in 1947. The town has always remained tension free. The other town with Muslim population is Qadian that is the headquarters of Ahmediya sect.

What is all the more disturbing that it is the entire Muslim community in India that is being maligned in the process by these forces for terrorist actions perpetrated from people from outside the country. It may be mentioned that such a situation had led to the massacre of Sikhs in November, 1984 following the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her two Sikh security guards. According to the record produced by state Congress chief Capt Amarinder Singh, RSS activists too were involved in “teaching a lesson to the Sikhs”.

It is the psyche of these people that sends out dangerous signals.

Punjab has been subjected to series of incidents of sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib since June 1, 2015 starting with Bargari in Faridkot district. The Bir of Guru Granth Sahib that was reported missing from Burj jawahar Singhwala village near Bargari is still to be traced. Torn pages of the Bir were found scattered in the streets of Bargari. The state remained blocked for about two weeks. A series of incidents followed. The latest case of sacrilege of Sikh scriptures has been reported from Bhagta Bhai village.

The situation headed towards confrontation between hardline Hindu and Sikh organisations a few weeks back when the leaders of so called Shiv Senas, till then unknown, started issuing provocative statements against the Sikhs. The activists of Sikh organisation blocked the bridge over Beas river on the GT Road to challenge these Hindu outfits.

The disturbing aspect is that these so called Shiv Sena and Gau Raksha leaders have been provided police security and one fails to understand the reason. Two Hindu leaders recently faked attacks on them to get security. Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal needs to explain that rationale of providing security to such elements who are ready to create trouble.

Punjab has paid a very heavy price and this state can’t afford yet another effort at destabilization. Police action has been timely. However, it is the motive indicating broader design that is all the more alarming aspect of the situation.



Jagtar Singh


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