Nearly 125 kg of gold, costing nearly Rs 23.75 crore, according to prevailing market rate, will be used to build golden walls for the main prayer hall in Gurdwara Bangla Sahib in the capital, reports The Tribune.
The Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee has handed over the first lot of 30 kg of gold to Baba Harbans Singh to perform kar seva to make the project a reality. DSGMC president Paramjit Singh Sarna says the work will be completed in around 18 months and will be done in phases to ensure that devotees are not put to any discomfort.
The gold will be crafted in the form of fixed-size plates, which would be finally joined together and will adorn the walls of the sanctum sanctorum of the famed gurdwara.
The gold plates will be fixed at a height of six feet from the ground to prevent any damage to them. The entire inside portion of the main hall would be covered with gold. The outer portion of the dome of the gurdwara is already gold-plated.
The golden move has already sparked off a debate with critics saying that the money spent on the project could have been well utilized on education of Sikh children and other welfare work.“It is a sheer waste of resources that can be used for the uplift of the 1984 riot victims”, says Jarnail Singh, author of the book on anti-Sikh riots “I Accuse”.
Manjit Singh GK, Sarna's rival in DSGPC politics, says it would have been wiser to educate the community kids with the money collection through donation.Cost, Sarna, says is not an issue. “He (Manjit Singh) is jealous of the good work done by us for the Sikh community”, he says.
In the past, DSGMC had gifted a golden ‘palki' to Gurdwara Nankana Sahib in Pakistan. Gurdwara Bangla Sahib was built in 1783 and is associated with the Eighth Sikh Guru Har Krishan. Since a bungalow originally stood at the site, it derived its name Bangla Sahib.