Woman shot dead ‘for consuming alcohol’ inside Sikh gurudwara, say police

A woman has been shot dead inside a Sikh temple in northern India’s Punjab state for allegedly consuming liquor on the premises.

Police in Patiala said the incident took place on Sunday night at the Dukh Niwaran Sahib gurdwara.

The woman, identified as Parwinder Kaur, 35, was allegedly under the influence of liquor when she was gunned down by a man, reported The Indian Express.

She “was consuming liquor sitting near the Sarovar [holy pond] at Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran Sahib,” senior police superintendent Varun Sharma said at a press conference on Monday.

“She was carrying the alcohol bottle. When other devotees saw this, they objected and took her to the gurdwara manager. They were standing near the manager’s office when the accused, identified as Nirmaljit Singh Saini, opened fire with his licensed revolver.”

Police said another devotee was also injured in the shooting.

The two were taken to Rajindra Medical College and Hospital where doctors pronounced Kaur dead on arrival.

Officials said she received three gunshot wounds and died on the spot.

The injured is receiving treatment at the hospital.

Mr Saini, the accused, has been arrested and his weapon has been recovered.

Mr Sharma told the outlet that the accused had “no previous criminal record”.

He said devotees who enter the temple are not frisked.

“I will not mince my words. The police do not frisk devotees who visit the gurdwara. The SGPC [Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee], which manages the gurdwara, can answer how the accused carried a weapon inside,” he was quoted as saying.

Police said among the woman’s belongings, a prescription from a drug de-addiction centre was found, which stated she was undergoing treatment for alcohol addiction.

“The doctor has written that she was having mood swings, was under depression and had frequent negative thoughts,” Mr Sharma said.

According to the police, the woman’s body has not been claimed yet.