The Tribune – Debate rages over exhuming remains of Duleep Singh

New Delhi, 24 July 2017. Amid a renewed debate over exhumation of the remains of Maharaja Duleep Singh, former Chairman of the Minorities Commission Tarlochan Singh today said he had taken up the issue with the British and the process to dig the grave and perform a cremation requires permission from various quarters.

As the NCM Chairman in 2005, he wrote to the British High Commissioner in India to allow digging of Duleep Singh’s grave and perform cremation as per Sikh rites, Tarlochan Singh said.

The High Commissioner replied the UK Government had no objection, but the clearance for it must be obtained from the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Head of the Church of England since the graveyards were under it.

The Archbishop advised him that permission must be first obtained from the Church authorities. He then informed Sikh organisations concerned to initiate necessary action.

“I have visited Elvedon estate, which was his residence in England. He was buried in the courtyard of the Church in a small graveyard. There are also graves of his wife and children along with some others… I attended the annual wreath-laying ceremony by the Mayor of Thechfort.

The feeling among the Sikhs is to have a Samadhi of Maharaja Duleep Singh in place of a grave and not shift the remains to Punjab…but it is still being debated,” the statement said. (TNS)


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