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Sikh Missionary Excommunicated for Blasphemous Writings
By VARINDER WALIA
The Tribune, Amritsar, Oct. 22, 2006
Photo: Inder Singh Ghagga
Taking strong and suo-moto exception [without external prompting] to the alleged blasphemous writings and statements by Prof. Inder Singh Ghagga, an alumnus of Sikh Missionary College, Ludhiana, Akal Takht today directed the Sikh sangat [community] to stop him forthwith from carrying out his religious activities all over the world.
In a directive issued on the letter head of Akal Takht, the jathedar [chief] also took similar action against Prof. Ghagga's associates, including Mr. Gurcharan Singh Jeeonwala, Mr. Manjit Singh Sahota, Mr. Karamjit Singh Gill, Mr. Amandeep Singh Kang, Mr. Gurmit Singh , Mr. Parminder Singh Parmar, Mr. Jasbir Singh Mangat and their associates.
The development is considered unprecedented since Prof. Ghagga and his associates were not given an opportunity to clarify their respective positions.
Finding the remarks too obnoxious, the Akal Takht this time directed the Sikhs not to allow Prof. Ghagga and his associates to speak from any gurdwara or Panthic stage.
Earlier, one Bhag Singh of Ambala was also excommunicated on the same grounds for writing against Benati Chaupai and Ardas. However, he had presented himself before the Akal Takht and sought forgiveness. Later, Mr. Gurbakhsh Singh Kala Afghana was excommunicated from the Sikh Panth for the same reasons.
Of late, many petitions had been pouring in against Prof. Ghagga, He and his group had been indulging in blasphemous writings against Sikh ideology and gurbani [Sikh theology], they allege.
Interestingly, Ghagga claims himself to be associated with missionary colleges but the Sikh Missionary College, Ludhiana, declared that he was not associated with the institute. The same statement had come from Gurmat Gian Missionary College where Ghagga was teaching. Mr. Gurcharanjit Singh Lamba, editor of the community journal Sant Sipahi, criticsed these statements saying that merely saying that he was not associated with them had no meaning unless these institutions condemned the writings of Ghagga and Kala Afghana.
Prof. Ghagga who had been an ardent supporter of cop-turned-Sikh-scholar Gurbakhsh Singh Kala Afghana, is presently in Canada. His speeches there triggered physical clashes between rival groups and the atmosphere was getting surcharged.
Ghagga started with casting aspersions against the bani [writings] of Guru Gobind Singh and then came down to passing adverse remarks on the bani and history of all the Gurus.
The Akal Takht directive has also given stern direction to Sikhs not to cooperate in any of the seminars and conventions organised by Ghagga and his associates.