Iconic books are texts revered as objects of power rather than just as words of instruction, information, or insight. In religious and secular rituals around the globe, people carry, show, wave, touch and kiss books and other texts, as well as read them. This blog chronicles such events and activities. (For more about iconic books, see the links to the Iconic Books Project at left.)

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Trouble over publishing Guru Granth in Punjab

Unrest has broken out in Punjab prompted by a Sikh central committee's attempt (see previous post) to monopolize publication and distribution of the Guru Granth. The Tribune of Chandigarh (India) reports:
In a bizarre incident, agitated activists of the Guru Granth Sahib Satkar Committee picked up two brothers from the shop of famous publishers Jeewan Singh Chattar Singh and Sons, near Golden Temple, and blackened their faces in full public view.

The brothers are accused of selling 50 “birs” of Guru Granth Sahib to a Delhi-based Sikh couple. The activists of the committee followed the vehicle of the couple Surinder Singh and his wife up to Beas. They intercepted them and compelled them to return to Amritsar. The agitating Sikh activists alleged that the birs were stacked in the Delhi couple’s vehicle and they were wearing shoes. It is alleged that the couple wanted to sell the birs at a high price. It is alleged that both brothers were first beaten up in full public view and then in the room of Akal Takht. The heavy police force that reached the incident site could not intervene because of the surcharged religious sentiments.

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