U.S. Sikh Leaders Condemn Violence In Vienna And Appeal for Peace In India

May 27, 2009

Author: Staff Writer

Source: Punjab Newsline Network

http://www.punjabnewsline.com/content/view/16853/38/

Sikh leaders across United States have condemned the violence in Vienna, Austria, in which one person died and several others were injured.

Dr. Rajwant Singh, Chairman of Sikh Council on Religion and Education (SCORE), said, “We condemn the violence which took place in Vienna, Austria. This kind of violence has no place in the Sikh affairs and it needs to be categorically condemned by all Sikhs without going into the merits of the issue. No issue requires taking law into your own hand no matter what the provocation is. We are saddened by this terrible tragedy and we appeal everyone to maintain peace and calm at all cost.”

He added, “This is undoubtedly a major setback to the Sikh interests on the international scene especially in Western Europe and the Americas. Various Sikh groups have been working hard day and night to create positive image of the Sikhs and also to get Sikhs the right to exercise their religion without restrictions throughout the Western world. This incident does tremendous damage to all such efforts and it has brought bad name to rest of the peaceful Sikh community worldwide.”

He further added, “We appeal to Jathedar of Akal Takhat, the highest spiritual authority in India, to issue a strict edict that no person or organization should resort to violence to deal with any issue related to Sikh observances or Maryada (Sikh code of conduct). We have seen an escalation of violent means to deal with issues related to Maryada or issues related to respecting Guru Granth Sahib(Sikh Scriptures) in the recent times. Only Akal Takhat should be the place to bring an issue for deliberations.