Tension in pockets of Sirsa; Section 144 imposed at places

msg-7591SIRSA: Tension gripped Sirsa where authorities have imposed prohibitory orders in view of protests against the controversial film ‘Messenger of God (MSG)’, featuring Dera Sacha Sauda sect head Gurmit Ram Rahim Singh.

“We have imposed Section 144 (banning assembly of five or more people in an area) at a few places in Sirsa, including near a Sikh shrine, “Sirsa Deputy Commissioner Nikhil Gajraj said.

Assembly of people has been banned at few places in Sirsa to maintain law and order in the wake of protests by Sikh organizations against the film.

Meanwhile, certain Sikhs gathered at a Gurudwara on city police station road to register their protest against the film.

Sirsa is the place where the headquarters of Dera Sacha Sauda is located.

“We want a ban on the movie…we are strongly against the movie, which if released, can cause tension in society and hurt religious sentiments of many sections,” Jagdish Singh Jhinda, President of Haryana Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee (HSGMC), said.

He warned that if the film is screened by any of the theatre or multiplex in Sirsa or elsewhere in Haryana it will be the owners who will be responsible for the consequences.

The HSGMC members gave a memorandum to the local SDM and DSP seeking ban on the film.

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, “calls himself a saint despite facing serious cases in the courts. How can such a person call himself to be a messenger of God, he only wants to befool the people”, Jhinda had said.

Jhinda said the HSGMC has written to Censor Board, Haryana Government as well as the Centre demanding a ban on screening of the film.

“I have also asked Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh to clarify whether he is a saint or an actor,” he said, adding, if the film is released it can pose a threat to law and order problem.

Punjab Government had already stopped the screening of the ‘Messenger of God (MSG)’ in the state, “in view of reports of tensions surrounding its release in some other parts of the country”.

High alerts have been sounded in Punjab and Haryana after protests were staged against the proposed release of the movie. Political parties like SAD and INLD, and several Sikh outfits had taken to the streets in Haryana, Punjab and Delhi protesting against the film.

Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, on whom the movie is based, had earlier claimed at a press conference in Gurgaon that the film does not target any religious section.

“I have clearly said that I am just human. The acts portrayed in the movie are simply stunts,” he had said, in an apparent rejection of criticism from Sikh groups that he was portraying himself as God and Sikh Guru.

The authorities are keeping a close vigil in several pockets of Sirsa, Gajraj said.–PTI

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