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Nihangs clash with Punjab Police over Kapurthala Gurdwara encroachment; 1 cop dead, 5 in hospital (WATCH)

Violence erupted in Kapurthala, Punjab, resulting in the death of a police officer and injuries to five others during a clash with Nihang Sikhs over the encroachment of Gurdwara Shri Akal Bunga

Nihangs clash with Punjab Police over Kapurthala Gurdwara encroachment
First Published Nov 23, 2023, 9:13 AM IST

A policeman lost his life, and five officers sustained injuries in a confrontation between the Nihang Sikhs and the police in Kapurthala, Punjab. The clash arose over the encroachment of Gurdwara Shri Akal Bunga in the Kapurthala district, early Thursday morning.

The police took swift action, registering a case against 10 individuals affiliated with the Nihang sect, who allegedly occupied Gurdwara Akal Bunga. The charges include sections 307, 323, 324, 342, 427, 448, 511, 436, 148, 149, 379B, and Arms Act, based on the statement provided by Jagtar Singh. The police asserted that no one would be allowed to take the law into their own hands.

In a detailed press statement, SSP Vatsala Gupta revealed that Gurudwara Sri Ber Sahib had been under the control of a faction of Baba Budha Dal and Sant Baba Balbir Singh for many years. Tensions escalated when Sant Baba Man Singh, leading another faction of the Baba Budha Dal, and his aides captured Gurdwara Sri Akal Bunga Sahib on November 21. The incident saw the sevadar, Nirvair Singh, being tied up with a rope and an attack on Jagjit Singh with sharp weapons.

The situation intensified when Baba Man Singh's aides attempted to capture Peer Gab near Baba Balbir Singh's second camp village on Boosewal Road. Responding promptly, the police arrested 10 Nihang Sikhs, triggering a clash between the police and the Nihangs. Subsequently, a larger group of 40-50 Nihang Sikhs launched a deadly attack on the Gurudwara and engaged in a violent confrontation with the policemen.

The district policeman who lost his life in the attack by Nihangs was identified as Jaspal Singh. Six others injured are undergoing treatment at the Civil Hospital of Sultanpur Lodhi. The atmosphere remains tense, with officers reinforcing the area with a heavy police presence.

This incident is not the first involving Nihang Sikhs resorting to violence in Punjab. In 2020, Nihangs attacked a police officer in Patiala, severing his hand, during a confrontation related to COVID-19 lockdown measures. Additionally, in July this year, Nihang Sikhs opened fire in Ludhiana while attempting to capture the Golak of Gurudwara Manji Sahib.

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