Transportation of ‘Guru Granth Sahib’ in suitcase by father-son duo; Akal Takht raises questions

Guru Granth Sahib suitcase father-son Akal Takht
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AMRITSAR, NOVEMBER 20: A day after the father-son duo was held at International Airport in Amritsar for carrying Sikh holy book Sri Guru Granth Sahib in a suitcase, the Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh directed Baba Kulwant Singh of Moga Gurdwara Nanaksar Samadh Bhai to clarify his stance over the issue.

The police have procured a two-day remand of Jawala Singh and his son Jasvir Singh, who had disclosed the name of Baba Kulwant Singh during the preliminary investigation.

SHO Rajinder Singh, Airport Police Station, said Baba Kulwant Singh had also been included as an accused in the FIR. The trio has been booked under sections 295-A, 120-B and 34 of the IPC, the SHO said.

ALSO READ: Father-son duo booked for sacrilege; Caught carrying Sri Guru Granth Sahib in suitcase at Amritsar airport 

PA to Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh, Jaspal Singh, said Baba Kulwant Singh has been given five days to furnish his reply to the Akal Takht Secretariat.

Jawala Singh and his son Jasvir Singh were taken into custody for violating the ‘Sikh Rayat Maryada’ by not following the religious protocol of carrying the Sri Guru Granth Sahib.

According to reports, Jawala and Jasvir were carrying two copies of the Sikh holy book Guru Granth Sahib in a suitcase at Shri Guru Ram Das Ji International Airport. The father-son duo was carrying the holy books to Pune from Moga.

During the investigation, the father-son further disclosed that one of the saroops was to be delivered to Gurbaksh Singh, a sewadar at Gurdwara Nanaksar in Pune.

It has also been learned that the duo didn’t possess any authorisation letter to carry the ‘saroop’.

Before they could board the flight, an auto-rickshaw driver raised suspicion and informed the police.

After learning about the incident, the SGPC team reached the airport and took the ‘saroop’ in their possession, which was then placed in Amritsar’s Gurdwara Ramsar Sahib.

Rules for transportation of holy ‘Saroop’

A holy ‘Saroop’ cannot be transported in a suitcase, closet or cupboard.

Within India, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) reserves all rights to transport the ‘saroops’ in a special bus with ‘Maryada’.

Five Singhs (a minimum of three) are mandatory to accompany the ‘Saroop’ throughout the time they are on the move.

If travelling by domestic flight, a person must possess an authorisation letter from the SGPC, which ensures that ‘Maryada’ was being followed. And for long-distance travel, an extra seat has to be reserved alongside the person carrying the Saroop.

For a shorter distance by a private vehicle, the Saroop must be carried on the head or in the lap.

When travelling, the ‘Saroop’ is to be covered, and placed on a cushion or cloth draping on the seat.

For an overseas trip, Akal Takht had in 2014 directed that the ‘saroops’ could be transported by air only through chartered flights while observing ‘maryada’.

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