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Sikhs divided on Golden Temple copy issue


Jyoti Kamal,CNN-IBN
Jun 12, 2009 at 03:42pm IST

Punjab: A Golden Temple replica could be the next flash point in the Sikh community.

It's the Gurudwara Mastuana Sahib being built by the Mastuana Sikhs in Sangrur and it’s a replica of Amritsar's Golden Temple, complete with the pool of holy water surrounding it.

"This is an exact replica of the Golden Temple. The measurements are the same, the appearance is the same, there is a same Har Ki Pauri, the same bridge over the sarovar has been made," said general secretary, Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), Sukhdev Singh Bhaur.

This gurudwara could again inflame the community, which has just started recovering from the trauma of the violence over Dera Sachkhand Ballan.

The SGPC has asked all the five Sikh high priests to take action against those behind the replica. The Mastauna Sikhs say the structure is being built since 1967, so why the fuss now?

"This is an attempt to get the Sikhs to fight with each other. Earlier there was the Dera issue and now there is this issue," said the chairman of Panthic Vichar Morcha, Parshottam Singh Phagguwala.

Supporters of the Gurudwara Mastuana Sahib deny attempts to replicate the Golden Temple. They say the SGPC is just creating trouble.

Every now and then, Punjab erupts over issues pertaining to different approaches to the Sikh faith. After Dera Sacha Sauda and the Dera Sach Khand controversies, the Dera Mastuana issue of a Golden Temple look-alike at Sangrur is showing indications of snowballing into a major issue, unless efforts are made to resolve it peacefully soon.

With inputs from Ravi Sharma and Parminder Bariana

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