NEWS N PICS – Clashes at Golden Temple


An uneasy calm prevailed at the Golden Temple complex here on the 30th anniversary of Operation Bluestar Friday following a clash between radical Sikh activists and SGPC task force volunteers in which 10 people were injured. Swords and sticks were freely used as scores of men from both sides chased one another outside the Akal Takht building within the complex, home to the holiest of Sikh shrines – Harmandir Sahib. People with bleeding injuries and ground stained with blood could be seen later at the site of the clash. Many people scurried inside buildings and other areas of the complex to save themselves. The hundreds of devotees in the temple were not affected as the clash remained confined to a small portion of the complex.

Eyewitnesses said the clash occurred when SGPC task force volunteers stopped Shiromani Akali Dal-Amritsar activists, led by radical leader Simranjit Singh Mann, from taking control of the microphone at the Akal Takht. The radicals were brandishing swords and other traditional weapons and raising pro-Khalistan slogans inside the complex. The clash occurred just after the religious ceremony to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Operation Bluestar ended Friday morning.

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