Rajnath assures SAD on issue of helmets for Sikh women

New Delhi: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday assured leaders of the SAD that the notification making it mandatory for Sikh women to wear helmets in the Union Territory of Chandigarh would be withdrawn.

The Home Minister gave the assurance to a delegation of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), led by former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, which met him in New Delhi on Thursday.

Rajnath assured that the notification issued in July 2018, making it mandatory for Sikh women to wear helmets in Chandigarh, would be withdrawn and that they would be exempted from wearing helmets while driving two-wheelers as earlier.

The SAD delegation apprised the Home Minister that the notification was against the spirit of Supreme Court judgment on the issue and was also against the Sikh “Rehat Maryada”.

The delegation pointed out that Punjab was being divested of its rights in Chandigarh by bringing in notifications which aimed at constituting a composite police cadre for union territories.

Badal Senior said this notification, which called for filling 50 per cent of police posts at entry level through direct recruitment, also called for filling the remaining posts from the DANIPS (Delhi, Andaman and Nicobar Island, Lakshadweep, Daman and Diu and Dadra Nagar Haveli Police) cadre.

The former Chief Minister said this was in gross violation of the letter and spirit of the Punjab Reorganization Act which stipulated that employees of Chandigarh administration would be taken on deputation from Punjab and Haryana in the ratio of 60:40.

Badal said the Home Minister, while reacting positively to the SAD demand, asked the Union Home Secretary to review the earlier decision and ensure that Punjab did not suffer any injustice.

Badal appealed for the transfer of Chandigarh to Punjab.

He said the Congress government discriminated against the state during the reorganisation of Punjab, with the new state being denied its capital city. He said nowhere in history had a parent state been denied its capital in such a manner.