Security up ahead of Bluestar anniversary

Security up ahead of Bluestar anniversary

Additional armed forces have been deployed in Punjab ahead of the Operation Bluestar anniversary which is unlikely to be incident-free given the amplified surge in radical sentiment this time around.

The anniversary, in fact, is observed as a week-long event beginning June 1 to protest the military operation 32 years ago to flush out militants from the Golden temple. 

Some radical Sikh organisations owing allegiance to slain Khalistan ideologue Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale plan to disrupt the speech of the head priest of Akal Takht Giani Gurbachan Singh on Operation anniversary date on June 6. Radicals have asked Sikh organisations to assemble at the Golden temple on that day.  

The event is likely to be beyond just staple pro-Khalistan sloganeering and sale of Bhindranwale T-shirts and memorabilia. That’s also because the radical sentiment appears unimpressed with the ruling Akali Dal over a series of incidents of desecration of the holy book Guru Granth Sahib in 2015. The issue of clemency by the Akal Takht to Gurmeet Ram Rahim, the chief of sect Dera Sacha Sauda, who was accused of blasphemy, too had not gone down well with many Sikh outfits. In fact, a parallel event of sorts on Bluestar anniversary by the “Sarbat Khalsa” appointed ‘new Akal Takht head priests’ could spell more trouble. Bluestar anniversaries haven’t been entirely free from violent incidents with radicals and the SGPC task force clashing on the temple premises. The police are also unwilling to take any chance given that its intelligence inputs also point towards regrouping of a militant outfit in Canada that could target prominent persons and peace in Punjab. 

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