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Friday, 14 August 2020

Daduwal elected HSGMC chief

rveen Arora

Tribune News Service

Karnal, August 13

In a closely fought election, Baljeet Singh Daduwal has emerged as the winner for the post of president of the Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (HSGMC ad hoc). He defeated Jagbir Singh Khalsa by two votes.

The election process went off peacefully at Gurdwara Chhevin-Nauvin Patshahi in Cheeka in Kaithal district on Thursday. Daduwal was supported by senior vice-president of HSGMC Didar Singh Nalvi's group while Khalsa was supported by former president Jagdish Singh Jhinda's group. Out of 36 eligible members, 19 voted in favour of Daduwal while 17 voted in favour of Khalsa.

However, the election process was stopped for more than an hour when Daduwal approached the district authorities, raising a question over the validity of four votes.

Besides, he alleged that the Election Officer is "biased". Daduwal in his written complaint stated that three members had already joined the SGPC, while one member did not attend even a single meeting of the general house.

He claimed only 32 members were eligible to vote, but later, the issue was resolved and all the 36 members were allowed to cast their vote.

To avert any untoward incident, Kaithal SP Shashank Singh Sawan, along with a heavy police force, remained there. SDM Kaithal, SDM Cheeka got the election conducted peacefully.

"Daduwal has been declared new president. He defeated Khalsa by two votes," said Darshan Singh Barari, Election Officer.

SDM Cheeka Shashi Vasundhara said that Daduwal alleged that ineligible members were being allowed to cast vote. "We got the matter checked and found that all the members were eligible," she added.

Nalvi congratulated the new president and said that they would strongly contest the case of a separate committee in the apex court.

Ad hoc committee only for 18 months

Sources claimed that the constitution of the ad hoc committee was only for a period of 18 months. "Under Section 16(8) of the Act, an ad-hoc committee consisting of 41 members was constituted. The then government appointed DC, Kurukshetra, as election officer to conduct the election of office-bearers and election of president was held on July 26, 2014. Under Section 16(8) of the Act, the ad-hoc committee could be constituted only for 18 months. "In today's election, no election officer was appointed by the government as the committee itself is defunct," said sources. Sujan Singh, Deputy Commissioner, Kaithal, said, "The election was conducted on Thursday by the HSGMC. The election officer was not appointed by the district administration."

from The Tribune

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