Second man beaten to death for alleged sacrilege attempt in Punjab in two days

The man was accused of disrespecting 'Nishan Sahib', the religious flag of the Sikhs, at a gurdwara in Kapurthala district.
Representational image of a hand lying motionless
Representational image of a hand lying motionless
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A day after a man was beaten to death for an alleged sacrilege bid at the Golden Temple in Amritsar, another person was killed for allegedly disrespecting 'Nishan Sahib' (the religious flag of the Sikhs) at a gurdwara in Kapurthala on Sunday, December 19. Some residents of the village Nizampur claimed that the man disrespected the Nishan Sahib and tried to run away but was caught after a chase. According to police, the man was beaten to death.

Meanwhile, the Punjab police said that it is trying to ascertain the identity of a man, who was beaten to death after he allegedly attempted to commit sacrilege inside the sanctum sanctorum of the Golden Temple in Amritsar, and it has been established that he spent a few hours inside the complex. The announcement came after Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa held a meeting in Amritsar with senior police officials.

A case was registered against the unidentified man late on Saturday night under sections 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Amritsar Police Commissioner Sukchain Singh Gill said on Sunday, December 19.

He said footage obtained from all the cameras at the Golden Temple is being examined to collect information about the accused. The footage shows that the accused entered the Golden Temple around 11 am on Saturday and slept for a few hours in front of the Akal Takht, the supreme temporal seat of the Sikhs, the police commissioner said.

The incident occurred after 6 pm and he had spent several hours in the Golden Temple before committing the crime, he added. The man jumped across the railings inside the sanctum sanctorum of the Golden Temple on Saturday evening, picked up the ceremonial sword and reached near the place where a Sikh priest was reciting the holy Guru Granth Sahib. He was caught by Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) task force members.

When he was being taken to the SGPC office, an angry crowd thrashed him, which subsequently led to his death. Authorities said the man was yet to be identified. "No mobile phone, no purse, no identity card or Aadhaar card was found from him. It has been established that he entered (the Golden Temple complex) around 11 am and remained there for a few hours until the incident," the Deputy Chief minister said.

CCTV footage from all the nearby as well as other areas of the city is being scanned to ascertain from where he came to Amritsar and from which location he reached the Golden Temple, Randhawa, who also holds the home portfolio, said. He said while speaking to SGPC officials, it has been suggested that the SGPC task force should also form its own intelligence wing.

Earlier, several political leaders condemned the alleged sacrilege attempt at the Golden Temple. Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi has ordered a probe into the matter.

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