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Nihang Sikhs halt TV serial shoot in Mohali over dummy Gurdwara set claiming ‘sacrilege’, production team accuses them of assault

Kharar police were called. The production unit accused Nihangs of assaulting and abusing them. Both parties were taken to the police station for further questioning. Nihangs warned they would launch protests if the "culprits" were not punished after which the police assured them appropriate action in the matter.

On 8th July, Nihang Sikhs halted shooting of an Anandkaraj (Sikh wedding) scene for a TV serial in Mohali, Punjab claiming the production team indulged in sacrilege by setting up a dummy Gurdwara. The incident took place in the Akalgarh region of village Gharuan in the district of Mohali. The shooting was done for the TV serial Udaariyaan produced by Sargun Mehta’s Dreamiyata Entertainment Pvt Ltd.

As per reports, the production team had set up a dummy Gurdwara set to shoot the scene of a Sikh wedding for the serial. However, someone informed a group of Sikhs claiming ‘beadbi’ or sacrilege was happening at the set. Nihangs rushed to the set and stopped the shooting. They claimed that sacrilege happened pointing towards Nishan Sahib and Palki Sahib being placed at the set. A symbolic ‘Swaroop’ of Sri Guru Granth Sahib was also placed on the set. Three Granthis participated in the shooting.

Kharar police were called. The production unit accused Nihangs of assaulting and abusing them. Both parties were taken to the police station for further questioning. Nihangs warned they would launch protests if the “culprits” were not punished after which the police assured them appropriate action in the matter.

Nihang Sikh Baba Nihal Singh Barauli told police that they were called by one Baba Major Singh to the shooting spot. When they reached the site, they found Guru Granth Sahib’s Palki. Accusing producer Sargun Mehta of sacrilege, Nihang Sikhs demanded strict action against Mehta and her husband. Accusing Sikhs present at the set, Nihang Sikhs expressed their dismay saying that Sikhs were letting sacrilege happen in front of their eyes.

Punjabi actor Jarnail Singh also reached the shooting site. He agreed that sacrilege happened but added showing a Sikh wedding in a serial should be seen as a “good initiative”. He added that just like the Shiromani Committee banned taking Sri Guru Granth Sahib Swaroop at wedding palaces, there should have been guidelines for shootings as well. However, such scenes have been shot in the past.

Kharar DSP Karan Singh Sandhu said that the production team has assured the police that they would seek guidelines from Akal Takht or SGPC about shooting such scenes. He added that the production team accused Nihang Sikhs of creating ruckus and assaulting them. CCTV footage was being checked to understand what happened on Nihang Sikhs’ arrival. Further investigation into the matter is underway.

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