SGPC controversy: Obey Centre, says new Haryana governor

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Jul 26 2014, 22:31pm hrs
As controversy raged over Haryana's move to create a separate Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (SGMC), Governor-designate Kaptan Singh Solanki today said the Centre's directive against it "must be obeyed".

Solanki said though his opinion was personal, he would look into all aspects before taking a decision on the Centre's directive to annul the Act passed by the state Assembly, to which the former Governor has already accorded sanction.

"Under the circumstances, if the central government says something, I think it is my personal opinion that it must be obeyed," Solanki said.

He said that although he cannot say anything off-hand on what he will do once he takes over as the new Governor, he "will look into all aspects".

"If the matter comes before me, I will go through all the facts as per the Constitution. I will ensure that there will be no political interference in this matter," he said.

Solanki said he is open to consider the matter and look into the legality of the issue of Haryana forming a separate SGPC, which Punjab has strongly objected to, saying it is "unconstitutional" and "illegal".

He added if there is another opinion, that will also be sought.

BJP leader from Madhya Pradesh, Solanki, has been appointed the new Governor of Haryana to replace Jagannath Pahadia, whose term ends July 26. Solanki is likely to take over his new assignment in a day or two.

Haryana and Punjab are at loggerheads over the issue of a separate SGPC by the latter after the passing of a new law by the state Assembly which was accorded assent by the outgoing Governor Jagannath Pahadia.

Strongly objecting to Haryana's act, Punjab has knocked on the doors of the Centre and sought its intervention, saying that a separate SGPC is in contravention of the Central Gurdwara Act of 1925.

The Centre has asked Haryana to revoke the new law in a communication to the state, which has rejected the Union Home Ministry's directive and instead asked it to "forthwith withdraw" its letter seeking annulment of the Act creating a separate SGPC.