CHANDIGARH: Haryana Finance Minister Harmohinder Singh Chattha said the state government was against the use of force in taking possession of the gurdwaras, and hoped that the issue would be resolved by both the Akali Dal (Haryana) and Akali Dal (Punjab) through dialogue.
Chattha was replying to a question on the possibility of conflict among the Sikhs over the control of gurdwaras. The Haryana Gurudwara Management Act, 2014, is in keeping with the spirit of the Constitution and would not be revoked at any cost, he asserted.
Chattha said that to ensure the implementation of the Act,the Haryana Sikh gurudwara judicial commission and a Gurudwara election commission would be constituted and the expenses would be borne by the government.
Describing the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) advertisement titled “Hooda Sarkar ka Sikh Kaum Ke Saath Bada Fareb” as baseless and divorced from facts, he said the SGPC was misleading people by terming the Gurudwara Bill a money bill.
According to Article 199 of the Constitution, a money bill is brought by a state government to procure funds to be spent from the treasury whereas appropriation of fund is made out of the Consolidated Fund of the state. Therefore, the expenditure on the constitution of commissions and the staff’s salary will be borne by the treasury of the state, he said.
Chattha also said the golak money belonged to the gurdwaras and would be spent on their upkeep and management.
Chattha said that the Bill for setting up the Haryana Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee had been enacted under the Gurudwara Management Act, 1925.
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had demanded a separate state and Haryana was formed under the Punjab Reorganisation Act, 1966.
According to Section 72 of the Act, the state is empowered to form a separate gurdwara management committee.
Thereafter, Kurukshetra University and Haryana Agricultural University were set up in in Kurukshetra and Hisar respectively during the tenure of Bansi Lal.
Apart from this, 14 amendments were made to the Act of 1925, out of which 12-13 amendments have been made after the partition of Punjab but the consent of the Centre was never sought.