Amritsar, Nov 29 (UNI) Despite opposition from the BJP, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandik Committee (SGPC) today installed a potrait of slain Damdami Taksal head Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale at the Sikh History Museum in the Golden Temple complex.
Bhindranwale was killed during the June 1984 'Operation Bluestar', carried out to flush out armed militants from the Golden Temple.
The installation ceremony was attended by Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Joginder Singh Vidanti, SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar, Bhai Harnam Singh Dhuma, the current head of the Taksal and a number of other religious leaders.
The installation of Bhindranwale's potrait in the museum had been the long standing demand of the Taksal and other Sikh radical organisations including the Akali Dal (Amritsar) and the Dal Khalsa.
The BJP, an alliance partner of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), that controls the SGPC, had opposed the installation of the potrait.
Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal had refused to comment and a few days back had stated that the decision to install the potrait was that of the SGPC. The Congress too had voiced its opposition to the SGPC move and had alleged that the decision was taken at the behest of the Chief Minister.
The potrait painted by Gurinderpal Singh depicts Bhindranwale standing between the Harmandir Sahib and the Akal Takht. The writings below the potrait describe Bhindranwale as 'the greatest Sikh martyr of the 20th century who sacrificed his life alongwith others to uphold the honour and integrity of the Harmandir Sahib and the Akal Takht'.
Besides, the painting of the Sikh Gurus and of important events, the Sikh History Museum also features potraits of Sikh warriors who fought against the British and of Sikh martyrs from the defence forces who attained martyrdom while defending the nation against external aggresion.