CHANDIGARH: All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) president Karnail Singh Peermohammad has appealed Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to take up the issue of displacement of Sikh farmers in Gujarat ‘seriously’ with his counterpart Narendra Modi.
Badal has assured to take up the issue with Modi.
Peermohammad, said, this is not the first time that this issue has been raised. The delegation of farmers led by Akali leader Balwant Singh Ramoowalia had met Badal last year also and urged him to intervene but nothing substantial has been done so far, Peermohammad rued.
The Sikh leader also requested Punjab government to provide compensation to the displaced farmers either in form of land or money.
Expressing concern over this anti-minority step taken by Modi, Peermohammad said other states could also start acting in such manner in future.
India is a secular country where all the communities have equal rights, he stressed.
The Gujarat government had ordered the Sikhs to sell their land and return to their native state Punjab as they were not Gujaratis, citing the Bombay Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1948.
The land accounts of the Sikh farmers have already been frozen.
The Minorities Commission has also strongly disapproved of the interpretation that ‘only Gujarati farmers could own or buy land in the state’.
The commission member Ajaib Singh in the report said, “Modi, who has the habit of terrorising the minorities in Gujarat, was in this case victimising the Sikh farmers.”
The Gujarat High Court had struck down state government’s order but it was challenged in the Supreme Court.