After two Youth Akali Dal members had blackened the Rajiv Gandhi statue on 25th December with black spray paint, some Congress leaders later cleaned the statue with milk in order to purify it. Going a step ahead to show allegiance to the Congress party, an expelled Sikh Congress leader Gursimran Singh Mand took off his dastar (turban) and cleaned the statue with it.
Mand got the whole act of cleaning the statue with his turban recorded in a video and posted it on social media seemingly in an attempt to win the praises from the party. But instead of bringing him praises the video sparked huge outrage on social media. The dastaar also called pugg is considered a very important part of Sikhism since the time of first Sikh Guru. Guru Nanak Dev had honoured Guru Amar Das with a special dastaar when he was declared as the next Guru.
Mand was expelled from Congress party in 2014 from the primary membership of the party including five others for alleged anti-party activities. As per the release of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC), Mand had levelled wild and unsubstantiated allegations against the party president Pratap Singh Bajwa and the senior Congress leadership managing the State affairs. He along with others had launched a movement to oust the PPCC President who was appointed by Sonia Gandhi, the then Congress President and the mother of Present Congress President Rahul Gandhi.
In February this year, some pictures of Mand with local Congress MP Ravneet Bittu and MLA Bharat Ashu had surfaced based on which Mand was claiming that he had rejoined the Party. After the party workers protested, the District Congress President Gurpreet Gogi issued a statement clarifying that Mand was not re-inducted into the party. It appears that out of his desperation to rejoin the Congress party, Mand went to the extent of cleaning the statue of Rajiv Gandhi with his turban to please the top Congress leadership.