Tight security in and around the Golden Temple complex scuttled the ‘Sarbat Khalsa’ supporters’ plan to set up a parallel Akal Takht Secretariat here today.Activists of the allied Sikh organisations failed to reach the complex due to the presence of police personnel and the members of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) task force, a day after the arrest of ‘Sarbat Khalsa’-appointed Akal Takht ‘interim Jathedar’ Dhian Singh Mand and five of his aides.The unofficial Takht Jathedars were scheduled to pay obeisance at the Akal Takht today, having already visited Takht Hazur Sahib and Takht Patna Sahib. However, all entry points to the complex were put under surveillance.
The Akal Takht Secretariat and the residence of Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh were also placed under heavy security.SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar oversaw the security arrangements. “While no one can be stopped from paying obeisance at the Akal Takht, these arrangements have been made to deal with any untoward step which can be expected from certain Sikh organisations,” he said.
Meanwhile, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD, Amritsar) leader Harbir Singh Sandhu said the plan to pay obeisance at the Akal Takht had been postponed. “We will work out a fresh schedule after the release of Mand and the others. We are committed to setting up a parallel Takht Secretariat,” he said.The SAD (Amritsar) was one of the organisers of the radicals’ ‘Sarbat Khalsa’, held at Chabba village in Amritsar district on November 10 last year.Police Commissioner Amar Singh Chahal said no arrest was made in or around the shrine complex today.