Radicals raise Pro-Khalistan slogans at Op Blue star anniversary

Radicals raise Pro-Khalistan slogans at Op Blue star anniversary

Supporters of radical Sikh organisations shout pro-Khalistan slogans at a demonstration marking the 34th anniversary of the Operation Blue Star,1984, at Golden Temple in Amritsar on Wednesday. PTI

Amid pro-Khalistan slogans being shouted by hardliners brandishing swords, the 34th anniversary of Operation Bluestar was observed at the Golden Temple in Amritsar on Wednesday without any major disruption.

A clash, however, broke out on Wednesday morning between radicals and the task force of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) inside the temple compound in which one person was injured.

The clash fizzled out after the SGPC task force showed no signs of letting radical elements overpower the occasion.

The Operation Bluestar was undertaken by the Army in June 1984 to flush out militants, who were holed up inside the Golden Temple.

Hardliners who descended at the temple shouted slogans celebrating Khalistan ideologue Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

Reports said, some of them even carried portraits of Jagtar Singh Hawara, a convict in the murder of former chief minister of Punjab Beant Singh. Many of them wore T-shirts that had Bhindrawale’s portrait on it.

Akal Takht head priest Giani Gurbachan Singh delivered his message from the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of Sikhism, calling for the community to unite and address its issues through dialogue.

Markets at many places in the city were shut after there was a call for a bandh in Amritsar on Wednesday.

Amritsar had turned into a fortress over the past few days with security agencies sounding a high alert.

Five companies of Rapid Action Force and one company of Indo-Tibetan Border Police was deployed in Punjab ahead of the Operation Blue Star anniversary to prevent any untoward incident.

According to the police, nearly 3,000 policemen were deployed, essentially around the Golden temple, to maintain peace and security.