August 30, 2011 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
Amritsar (August 30, 2011): All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) accused the Government of India of usurping the identity of Sikhs by denying their demand for Anand Marriage Act. The Government’s action of forcing Sikhs to register their marriages under Hindu Marriage Act is in violation of “equal rights” provided under Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution of India. AISSF announced that it will file a constitutional petition before the Supreme Court of India challenging the Government’s refusal to pass Anand Marriage Act. The petition will request the Supreme Court to order the Government of India to give equal rights to Sikhs under Article 14 & 15 of the Constitution by passing Anand Marriage Act.
AISSF announced that it will also launch “Proud to be Sikh Campaign” to build public movement in support of Anand Marriage Act and Sikhs’ Right to Self Determination. Under “Proud to be Sikh” Federation will urge Sikh community to say “No to Hindu Marriage Act” by refusing to register their marriages under Hindu Marriage Act. The Federation announced to collect “one million signatures” in support of Anand Marriage Act.
According to Karnail Singh Peermohammad, Federation President, the Government’s decision regarding Anand Marriage Act is discrimination against Sikh community and an open attack on the Sikh identity. This decision to deny Anand Marriage Act is another step to dissolve separate religious identity of Sikh nation. As per Article 14 & 15 of the Constitution, the Government cannot deny Sikhs to have Anand Marriage Act as Muslim, Christians, Parsis and Jews already have their own marriage acts.
On August 15, 1947 India gained independence for which thousands of Sikhs laid their lives. However for Sikhs, independence from British Empire resulted only in further usurping of their rights, extermination of separate status of Sikhism and eventually to an open genocide of Sikhs in India, added Peermohammad.
According to Davinder Singh Sodhi, Secretary General of AISSF, the campaign “Proud to be Sikh” has been launched because Sikhism is a separate religion but the Government of India is constantly usurping the separate religious identity of Sikhs. Refusal to pass the Anand Marriage Act for Sikhs and forcing them to continue registering their marriages under Hindu Marriage Act shows the intentions of Indian Government towards Sikhs.
Since present SGPC, DSGMC and SAD (Badal) have failed to achieve Anand Marriage Act for Sikh community and have betrayed the faith of the community, Federation which is contesting the SGPC elections independently, will take this issue to the Sikh community and will expose the ineffectiveness of present SGPC, DGSMC and SAD (Badal) leadership.
Once given an opportunity to represent Sikhs at SGPC, Federation will vehemently take up the issue of Anand Marriage Act and will use all the resources, power and influence of SGPC for passage of Anand Marriage Act.
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