Sikh organisations justify shoe-throwing incident

Ludhiana/ Mumbai/New Delhi, Apr 8 : Sikhs distributed sweets to mark the defiant act of a journalist from their community who threw a shoe at Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram during a news conference after getting angry with the Minister''s reply to a question about 1984 riots in which hundreds of Sikhs were killed.

The Sikh Students Federation (SSF) said the incident highlighted the fact that those responsible for the riots have not been punished so far.

"We believe that the act by journalist Jarnail Singh, who threw shoe on Chidambaram was right. He threw it because even after 25 years, the one who were responsible for the Sikh riots have not been punished and no justice have been given to Sikhs," said Gurdeep Singh, SSF president in Ludhiana.

Sikh organisations in Mumbai also came out in support of the incident.

"The act may be different in different places. It may vary from person to person, but we are supporting the cause," said Kulwant Singh, general secretary of Guru Singh Sabha.

Throwing a shoe at someone is considered an insult in India.

A leading advocate who belongs to the Sikh community condemned the incident, saying legal action should be taken against the reporter.

"I condemn the act. It''s a crime and whosoever has done this act might it be because of aggression or sorrow. It''s not justified. Legal action must be taken against it," said KTS Tulsi, a senior advocate in New Delhi.

The shoe missed Chidambaram, who leaned back to avoid it. He later smiled and asked security guards to take the reporter out of the room.

This was the latest incident of shoe-throwing as a mark of protest against political leaders, including former U. S. President George W. Bush and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. (ANI)