The head of the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of Sikhism, Giani Harpreet Singh on Friday appealed to the Sikhs to gather in crowds at Talwandi Sabo, the home to one of the five temporal seats Sri Damdama Sahib, to celebrate 'Khalsa Sajna Diwas' on Baisakhi (April 14).
At the same time, he clarified this appeal should not be mistaken as a call for Sarbat Khalsa, meaning an assembly of all factions of Sikhs, that has been given by self-styled Sikh preacher and 'Waris Punjab De' chief Amritpal Singh, who has been on the run since March 18."
This Khalsa Sajna Diwas is to show that Sikhs are not scared of anything," Giani Harpreet Singh said while addressing a gathering of Sikh journalists on media censorship at Talwandi Sabo in Bathinda district.
Amritpal Singh had asked the Akal Takht Jathedar to call the Sarbat Khalsa on Baisakhi Day at the Takht Sri Damdama Sahib. Amid rumours that Amritpal Singh might surrender before police on this day in Takht Sri Damdama Sahib, the security was beefed up.
The head of the Akal Takht, who had recently given an ultimatum to the state government to release all Sikhs arrested in the crackdown against Amritpal Singh, announced a new platform to track and bust "anti-Sikh" content being circulated online.
He said budding journalists would be roped in for tracking and even busting the hateful content against the Sikhs. Without naming the BJP-led Central government, he said judiciary and executive are under constant "threat" of the government."
Concerted efforts were being made to malign the Punjabis and a section of media is being abused for it."He slammed the state government for spreading panic among masses by running stories of Amritpal Singh's possible surrender at Talwandi Sabo.
The jathedar also expressed annoyance over the failure of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to initiate legal action against police officials who allegedly wrongly identified a Sikh religious flag as those of Khalistan."
I again direct the SGPC to lodge first information reports against police officials as it amounted to character assassination," he stressed.The jathedar called people to come in large numbers to Sri Damdama Sahib on Baisakhi, which can tell that "we don't fear of the government which is suppressing Sikhs".
For the Sikhs, Baisakhi is a big festival as it marks the foundation day of Khalsa Panth or Sikh order by tenth Sikh Guru, Gobind Singh. The Khalsa Panth was founded in Anandpur Sahib in 1699.