Punjab remains on boil, paramilitary forces stage flag marches
Chandigarh: Punjab remained on the boil today as one more incident of sacrilege of a holy book was reported, prompting the government to deploy paramilitary forces which carried out flag marches in various parts of the state amid continuing agitation by activists of sikh groups.
10 companies, comprising about 1000 personnel, of paramilitary forces have been deployed in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana and Tarn Taran districts in view of the sensitive situation, police said.
The central forces along with police staged flag marches in several parts of the state, including Jalandhar and Tarn Taran, officials said.
The Punjab Cabinet, in the evening, adopted a resolution strongly condemning the dastardly acts of sacrilege in various parts of the state and described it as a "deep rooted" conspiracy to disturb hard earned peace, brotherhood and communal harmony in the state.
Sikh activists staged dharnas and took out protest marches in different cities, including Kapurthala and Hoshiarpur, throwing normal life out of gear.
Colleges and other educational institutions remained closed in Kapurthala, Moga and parts of Bathinda and Ferozepur, police said adding that most of the state owned buses remained off the roads.
The state, which has been witnessing a spate of incidents of sacrilege in the recent times, saw yet another such case in Gurusar Mehraj village in Bathinda district, police said.
"Some pages of Guru Granth Sahib were found to be torn. The situation in the village is tense," police said. In Tarn Taran, a man was caught and beaten up by agitated
community members for allegedly trying to commit sacrilege at a gurdwara in Nagoke, police said.
The man identified as Malkit Singh (34) of village Bule Nangal was taken away by three youth who are not traceable, police said.
DIG Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh said an FIR has been registered against the three youth at Police Station Verowal.
He claimed that the man caught by the villagers had by then done no harm to the Gurdwara or Guru Granth Sahib. However, after nabbing the man, the villagers, instead of handing him over to the police, had taken him away to be handed over to the self-styled 'Satkar Committee,' he said.
In view of the situation, the sixth edition of the World Kabaddi Cup scheduled to be held in the state from November 14 to 28 was cancelled today.
Congress and Aam Aadmi Party demanded imposition of President's rule, contending that the SAD-BJP government has failed to tackle the law and order situation which was deteriorating fast and spiralling out of control.