Security beefed up in Amritsar

After the radical Sikh outfit Dal Khalsa gave a call for an ‘Amritsar bandh’ on June 6 to mark the 34th anniversary of Operation Bluestar, security has been beefed up across the city. The radical outfits, meanwhile, have launched a campaign to garner support for the shutdown call.

Members associated with Dal Khalsa and other hardline groups have been distributing posters and leaflets across the city, urging traders, banks and educational institutions to keep their establishments closed on June 6 and observe a peaceful bandh.

‘Transport won’t be hit’

“We want to clarify that the shutdown call is only for business and educational institutions and there would be no stoppage of transportation. We appeal to the non-Sikh population of Amritsar to share the pain of the community and express solidarity by closing their business premises. It is time for the Hindu and Muslim community to show that they are with the Sikhs,” Kanwar Pal Singh, Dal Khalsa spokesperson, said.

On June 6, 1984, the Army stormed the complex of the Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple) in Amritsar, Sikhism’s holiest shrine, to flush out extremists led by Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

Three companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed in various parts of the city. Also CCTV cameras have been installed on major routes.

“Nearly 3,500 police personnel too have been deployed. Key roads of the city have been sealed and entry points are being checked,” S.S. Srivastava, Commissioner of Police (Amritsar), told The Hindu .