Need to take guidance from Sikh history to face challenges facing Panth: Giani Harpreet Singh

Intentions of anti-Panth people who want to take over management of SGPC will not succeed: SGPC President S. Harjinder Singh

People pointing fingers at Shiromani Akali Dal & SGPC are themselves hand in glove with anti-Panth forces: S. Sukhbir Singh Badal

Amritsar, August 8:

A large number of Panthak personalities and Sangat today attended the grand Gurmat Samagam (religious congregation) at Gurdwara Guru Ka Bagh, Ghukewali, Amritsar, organised on the occasion of first centenary of Morcha Guru Ka Bagh, started 100 years ago under the Gurdwara Reform Movement in 1922.

In their address, during the centenary congregation, prominent personalities of Panth stressed on to take inspiration from pages of Sikh history and to work with unity for the Charhdi Kala of the Panth. 

Addressing the large Sangat (congregation), Jathedar of Sri Akal Takht Sahib Giani Harpreet Singh said that the Khalsa Panth has always fought for the right and truth and the Morcha of Gurdwara Guru Ka Bagh was also won in this context. He said during this Morcha, the British government had crossed all limits of atrocities but the valiant Sikhs did not lose their patience with determination and continued the struggle till victory. 

Jathedar said there is a need to take this courageous history of Qaum (community) to the youth, so that the next generation can be prepared for tackling the challenges in future.

Speaking about the religious conversion, Giani Harpreet Singh said that to stop this from happening, the Sikhs should take guidance from their history. The younger Sahibazadas of tenth Guru are an inspiration in this regard as they remained firm in their faith despite several allurements and atrocities by the Mughals, said Jathedar. 

Jathedar of Sri Akal Takht Sahib asked the leaders of Shiromani Akali Dal to come forward for propagation of Sikh faith. The Jathedar also asked Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to reach door to door for propagation of Sikh faith and especially asked to adopt the method of dialogue. 

On this occasion, SGPC President Advocate Harjinder Singh Dhami announced to continue an active religious preaching campaign for communicating Sikh history to Sangat and appealed to them to support in preaching of Sikh faith. He said many people are trying to create divisions in the Sikh Panth on the incitement of anti-Sikh forces and there is a big need to understand their conspiracies.

Advocate Dhami said that at the behest of RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh), these people want to prepare ground in Punjab and their aim is to directly and indirectly take control of the management of Gurdwaras through SGPC elections. But the Khalsa Panth has always been strong against such forces and is still strong today, which will not allow their conspiratorial moves to succeed, said SGPC President. 

He said that the Sikh Qaum has always flourished in the times of challenges and the witness of this is the Sakas  (massacres) and Morchas (fronts) of Sikh history. The Morcha of Gurdwara Guru Ka Bagh also came out of such challenges and the Sikh community defeated the opposing forces. Meanwhile, the SGPC President clarified that the preachers of the SGPC are continuously working in the border area regarding religious conversion. He said that there is more discussion in this regard and the situation at the ground level is different. SGPC President announced that hundreds of students of Sikh Missionary Colleges under the SGPC management will be sent to the border areas for preaching, so that the truth of discussion about conversion can be ascertained.

During the centenary congregation, Shiromani Akal Dal President S. Sukhbir Singh Badal paid respect to Sikh warriors who participated in Morcha Guru Ka Bagh and expressed commitment to follow Sikh traditions. He said that the morchas started by the Sikh community are the source of power of the Sikh panth and the pages of morcha are very important in Sikh history, of which the hard struggle of Akali warriors is seen.

He said that the morchas of Sikh history were fought with determination by SGPC and Shiromani Akali Dal and these are the organizations of Sikh Panth, which did not care about their loss for the progress of Sikh faith and the issues of Punjab.

S. Badal said but it is sad that efforts are being made by anti-Panth people to weaken these organizations of the Panth. The people who are pointing fingers at the Shiromani Akali Dal and the SGPC without reason are working hand in glove with the anti-Panth forces and the Panth will never allow their conspiracies to succeed, said S. Badal. He said that the Shiromani Akali Dal has always been serious about the issues of the Sikh Panth and on the 100-year centenary of Morcha Guru Ka Bagh, it vows that it will always strive for the welfare of the panth.

On this occasion, those who shared their views with the Sangat and urged them to make Gurbani and Sikh history a part of their lives included Damdami Taksal head Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa, Tarna Dal head Baba Nihal Singh Harian Velan, Shiromani Panth Akali Buddha Dal 96 Crori head Baba Balbir Singh, Dal Baba Bidhi Chand head Baba Avtar Singh Sursingh. They also remembered the warriors of Morcha Guru Ka Bagh and encouraged every Sikh to be aware of these pages of Sikh history and to tell them to children.

Before this, bhog (concluding ceremony) of Sri Akhand Path Sahib was held and Granthi of Sachkhand Sri Harmandar Sahib Giani Gurminder Singh shared Gurmat (teachings of Sikh Gurus) views with the Sangat. The dhaddi and kavishar (balladeer and poetry) groups sang the ballads and poems of the history of this Morcha. During the event, the family members of the martyred Sikhs who were part of the Morcha were also honoured. Apart from this, the SGPC President S. Harjinder Singh Dhami also honored the prominent Panthak personalities.

Those present on this occasion included head granthi of Sachkhand Sri Harmandar Sahib Giani Jagtar Singh, Jathedar of Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib Giani Raghbir Singh, Jathedar of Takht Sri Harmandar Ji Patna Sahib Giani Ranjit Singh Gauhar-E-Maskeen, former SGPC President Bibi Jagir Kaur, SGPC general secretary S. Karnail Singh, SGPC executive member S. Jodh Singh and others including members and key officials of SGPC.

Album regarding Gurdwara Reform Movement released

On the occasion of the centenary of Morcha Guru Ka Bagh, an illustrated album specially published by the SGPC was released for the Sangat.

This album has been prepared by member of SGPC’s Sikh Itihas Research Board S. Harwinder Singh Khalsa and it has been published by SGPC’s Dharam Prachar Committee. This album has been published under the title ‘Gurdwara Prabandh Sudhar Lehar Samah Di Khooni Gatha’ (Bloody Saga of Gurdwara Reform Movement), which presents the history created to liberate the Gurdwaras from the corrupt mahants through paintings. Dedicated to the centenary of Morcha Guru Ka Bagh, the SGPC got these paintings prepared by organising a painting workshop, in which artists from different parts of Punjab contributed. It has also included paintings prepared on the occasion of the 100 year centenary of foundation of SGPC. Important personalities of the Sikh panth were present on the occasion of the release of the album on the occasion of the centenary congregation.