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Tuesday, March 2, 1999 Published at 19:30 GMT

World: South Asia

Rival Sikh rallies held in Indian state of Punjab

Two rival rallies in the Indian state of Punjab -- held just a few hundred metres apart -- have passed off without incident.

The state's chief minister, Parkash Singh Badal, and the president of Sikhdom's central authority, the Garadwara Prabandhak Committee, each addressed large crowds kept seperate by police in the town of Anandpur Sahib.

Later this year, the town will be the site of celebrations to mark the three-hundredth anniversary of modern Sikhism, and both men claim the leadership of the largest Sikh party the Shiromani Akali Dal.

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