The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), which is responsible for the management of Sikh shrines in Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, and Chandigarh, has sought an apology from the Punjab CM. It is alleged that on Friday that chief minister Bhagwant Singh Mann had entered into Takht Damdama Sahib under the influence of alcohol.

The Chief Minister Bhagwant Singh Mann with among thousands of devotees had thronged to Takht Damdama Sahib on the occasion of Baisakhi on Thursday and had paid his obeisance. Takht Sri Damdama Sahib in Punjab’s Bathinda district is a seat of temporal authority of Sikhism, and it is here that in 1705 Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru, prepared the full version of the religion’s scriptures called Sri Guru Granth Sahib.

In a release issued in Amritsar, SGPC senior vice president of Raghujit Singh Virk said that the chief minister under the influence of alcohol visited a highly respected spiritual site of the Sikh community and “violated the Sikh rehat maryada (code of conduct)”. He asked Mann to admit his mistake and apologise to the entire Sikh community.

“The conduct of CM showed that he did not extend the due respect and honour to the Guru Ghar. In this way he lowered the prestige of constitutional office of CM, too,” the release included.

Karnail Singh Panjoli, general secretary of the SGPC, criticised the CM for undermined the basic rules to be followed while visiting Guru Ghar. He remarked that if Mann cannot stop drinking alcohol, then he should refrain from prostrating inside the Guru’s house.

However, the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is yet to react to these allegations.


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