SGPC’s campaign to seek release of ‘Bandi Singhs’ (Sikh political prisoners) is not bearing fruit.
The SGPC had initiated a signature campaign for the issue on December 1, 2022. By April 2023, around 26 lakh Sikhs from across the globe signed the petition demanding the release of ‘Bandi Singhs’.
The aim was to submit the signed forms with the President of India through the Punjab Governor. Since April, SGPC secretary Partap Singh has been repeatedly approaching the Governor’s office to seek an appointment, but in vain.
Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Raghbir Singh said: “The Sikhs, who have made great sacrifices for the freedom of the country, were being subjected to discrimination by the present regime.”
The SGPC had reportedly submitted a list of ‘Bandi Singhs’ to the Prime Minister’s office seeking an appointment, thrice (on May 20, 2022; May 26, 2022 and June 8, 2022), but it never bothered. On March 9, during the visit of President Droupadi Murmu to the Golden Temple, the SGPC had apprised her that it was an emotive issue to the community and submitted a list of ‘Bandi Singhs.’
SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami said, “We demanded the President to give necessary directions to the Government of India and state governments concerned for their release.” He also claimed that the Centre had earlier issued a notification to commute Rajoana’s sentence.