A controversy erupted on Sunday over whether Canada’s Ontario province Premier Kathleen Wynne was presented a Siropa when she visited the Golden temple in Amritsar, with SGPC authorities denying extending such an honour, while the Canadian High Commission released a photograph of her with the traditional Sikh robe.The Golden Temple authorities rolled out the red carpet for Wynne, who paid obeisance at the holiest of the Sikh shrines and also cooked food at the community kitchen.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, according to Golden Temple’s Information Officer Gurbachan Singh, she was not presented the Siropa, the traditional robe of honour, a gesture usually extended to dignitaries visiting the shrine.The SGPC had announced on Saturday evening it would not offer her Siropa because of her views favouring same-sex marriages opposed by the Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of the Sikh religion.”No Siropa was presented to Wynne,” Gurbachan Singh said. However, the Canadian High Commission in New Delhi released a photograph of Wynne in the evening with the Siropa.Besides Gurbachan Singh, Shiromani Gurudwara Prabhandak Committee Chief Secretary Harcharan Singh was also seen in the photograph.When asked to comment on it, Gurbachan Singh said, “The photograph is morphed.” Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh said, “The SGPC’s decision was correct not to offer her Siropa. To pay obeisance in the Golden Temple is everyone’s right, but to give siropa to dignitaries, Sikh tenets need to be followed carefully.”Former Akal Takht jathedar Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti had issued an edict in 2005 against same-sex marriages. Courtesies were, however, extended to Wynne when she arrived at the temple, with senior staff members, including special staff which usually receives the VVIPs during their visit, welcoming her.The Premier was presented a gold plated photo of the Golden Temple along with a set of Sikh religious books by SGPC Chief Secretary Harcharan Singh. Gurbachan Singh, who showed Wynne around, said, “The premier was also apprised of the Sikh history with regard to the Golden Temple. The Ontario premier took keen interest in Sikh history.”Wynne later wrote in the visitor’s book it was a humbling experience for her to visit the shrine. Canada has a sizeable Sikh population and three members of the community were sworn-in as ministers in the Justin Trudeau cabinet last year.
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