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Security forces conduct flag march in Amritsar ahead of Bluestar anniversary 

Amritsar, June 1 (IANS) Security forces conducted a flag march in sensitive areas of Amritsar city on Wednesday to instil confidence among people ahead of the 32nd anniversary of ‘Operation Bluestar’ by the Indian Army at the Golden Temple complex.

Paramilitary forces and Punjab Police personnel have been posted at various locations of the Sikh holy city ahead of the Operation Bluestar anniversary on June 6.

The army had launched the operation in and around the Golden Temple complex, which includes the holiest of Sikh shrines ‘Harmandar Sahib’, in June 1984 to flush out heavily-armed terrorists seeking a separate homeland ‘Khalistan’ for Sikhs.

Radical Sikh organization Dal Khalsa has called for an Amritsar shutdown on June 6.

Hundreds of police personnel were joined by paramilitary forces, including the Rapid Action Force (RAF), Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), during the flag march which was carried out in the walled city and some other areas.

Senior police and security officers coordinated the flag march and security arrangements.

Authorities have stationed six companies of paramilitary forces, over 2,500 Punjab Police personnel from other districts and 10 units of anti-riot police to deal with any situation.

Security agencies are apprehensive that radical Sikh organisations and leaders may try to create disturbance during the Bluestar anniversary. Since Punjab goes in for assembly polls in February next year, there is apprehension of trouble.

Clashes were witnessed inside Golden Temple complex in 2014 and 2015 between Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) task force volunteers and radicals.

SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar on Wednesday appealed to everyone to maintain peace while observing the anniversary.

The Dal Khalsa has announced that it will organise a ‘genocide parade’ on June 3.

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