H C Singh

Guru Nanak – The True Apostle

If you need a Guru to guide you through
He should be like Nanak Guru
Who used to mind buffaloes in childhood
Worked as honest retailer during his boyhood
Thereafter he walked thousands of miles
With Bala and Mardana on both sides
To preach oneness of God
He walked upto Kashi, Tibet and Mecca
When Babar invaded Hindustan,
Killing and torturing all who did not embrace Islam
Even saints like Baba Nanak were not spared
Guru Nanak too was imprisoned
He complained to the God
The protecter of all
Why the almighty allowed Babar to torture us all
Put children and their mother to sword
Who dishonoured and enslaved thousands of women
Sent many to Gazni for auction
Though Baba despised Babar
For acting as Barbarian
He considered Hindus and Muslims alike
Those who did good deeds were divine

Thus
Guru Nanak was worshiped by all as a saint
As he had seen the light divine
He would not say his word of God
Instead Nanak called himself servant of God—-
Nanak Das or Nanak Gharib
Not wearing silk clothes that sparkle

To such a Guru ‘Chan’ bows with humility
Applies on his forehead sacred dust of his feet
So as to try to lead life of piety

January 13, 2012 Posted by | Poems, Sikhism | , , , , | Leave a comment

Sajjan Kumar’s Case before High Court and 1984 Anti Sikh Riots

  It is more than 25 years that thousands of Sikhs were mercilessly butchered, their houses burnt and looted in anti-Sikh riots of 1984. The rioting, killing and looting went on for four days as the Congress Government of Rajiv Gandhi did not call the Army from Delhi cantonment, part of the capital itself. The looting and killing were encouraged and led by Congress politicians of Delhi with the help of Delhi Police which did not prevent or even intervene. It was blemish of extreme lawlessness and murders of thousands in the capital of India, the so called biggest democracy of the world: worst of all, not even one criminal out of hundreds and even one Congress politician like Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler, out of untold numbers, was arrested, not to speak of being sentenced.

So many commissions were appointed to probe, hear the evidence and decide about punishment of guilty. Hundreds of crores of rupees were spent or wasted but to no result. But because of our political system and our politicians and political rulers, even when there were tangible evidences and recommendations, particularly before Nanavati Commission, not a single arrest was made. Infact proceedings and recommendations of all the commissions were put in cold storage.

Latest case, though not before a commission, but before Delhi High Court is that of Sajjan Kumar, an ex congress MP. He was found guilty by a Distt Court and as such non-bailable warrants were issued against him. Had Sajjan Kumar appeared or surrendered before the court he would have been arrested then and there and ordered to be put behind bar. But Sajjan Kumar, though found guilty, went missing with the help of his guard.

 The case came before the Delhi High Court on appeal.

 The High Court taking severe note of his ‘missing’, but it is noteworthy, that while giving anticipatory bail to Sajjan Kumar in two 1984 anti Sikh riot cases against him, learned Justice Pathak termed the charges against Sajjan Kumar of ‘grave nature’. However the court added that as “25 years have gone by and the delay undoubtedly tilts the balance in favour of politician”. The High Court even questioned the “CBI move to arrest Kumar now that charge sheet has been filed while it never felt the need while investigations were going on for the past five years”. It is virtual indictment of CBI, which is government appointed agency for investigation.

It will not be out of place to recapulate some facts that led to torture, massacre and burning of thousands of Sikh men, women and children during four days, when hell itself broke out on the Sikhs of Delhi, killing as per official figures 3000 but actually many times more unarmed and innocent, mostly poor Sikhs who had no knowledge of politics or were absolutely unconcerned with politics .

Hundreds of men were burnt or killed in the presence of their parents, their wives and children. Some were put to death by putting burning tyres in their necks.

Hundreds of children were taken away from the lap of their mothers or snatched from their fathers and killed in the presence of their parents and their grand parents. Also hundred of women were molested before their husbands and children.

In many families more than five persons were done to death. In a rare case there were seven widows from one family and many orphans.

It is not known in Indian and in world history of at least more than hundred years that such atrocities were committed by citizens of the same country on their own country’s citizens and that, too, in the capital.

There is much more to be said and has been recorded by many commissions and by few Sikh survivors who could have the courage to appear before commissions despite threat to their lives.

It is hoped that now, after long last, gap of 25 years, there will be justice in the present case of Sajjan Kumar. Which may set an example for others. The learned Judge has already said that charges against Sajjan Kumar are of “grave nature” and has even indicted CBI for inordinate delay “while investigations were going on for five years”.

Who is to be blamed for delay of 25 years in convicting hundreds of guilty, politicians and policemen? As explained above, it is country’s politics and politicians who care only for vote banks to get into power and remain in power, irrespective of political party or combination of political parties to which they belong.

March 5, 2010 Posted by | Anti Sikh Riots 1984, Corruption, India, Indian History, Political Commentary, Punjabi, Religion, Sikhism, World History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Need For a States Reorganisation Commission

It is high time Government of India takes necessary constitutional steps to accede to the demand of separate state of Telengana out of present Andhra state. The demand for Telengana state was accepted by UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, perhaps without consulting the cabinet as well as Congress Government and leaders of Andhra Pradesh. Accordingly there has been prolonged agitation and strikes, making Andhra government ineffective, besides loss of hundreds of crores of Rupees. It has affected the economy of the state as well as the common man. Controversy about Hyderabad going to Telengana or becoming a Union Territory like Chandigarh has affected the work and progress of Information Technology, as Hyderabad is one of its main centres in South. Already 139 MLA’s belonging to Telengana region have submitted their resignation and on 27th January they have appealed Supreme Court, through IPL, for speedy acceptance of their resignations.

Besides demand for separate Telengana state there have been demands for carving out 2 to 3 states out of unmanageable Uttar Pradesh. Demand for separate state of vidarbha out of Maharashtra has also been raised quite often. There are demands for more new states elsewhere in the country. It is pertinent to point out how Andhra State was conceded so that there is end to agitations and peace and harmony prevails in the entire country. In 1952 Shri Potti Srirammulu, a peace loving Mahatma Gandhi’s follower who had gone on indefinite fast unto death died after 25 days of fast. Pandit Nehru was PM then. He did not bother about his fast unto death. But soon after he realized his mistake and within few days after his death concealed to the demand of separate Andhra Pradesh.

The way out seems to be setting up of a new States Reorganisation Commission with clear and unambiguous terms of reference so that there is fair play and no further agitations.

Government of India should be aware, while prescribing terms of reference to new SRC that First State Reorganisation Commission had clubbed Maharashtra and Gujarat into one state though their language and culture differed. This mistake had to be rectified after prolonged agitations.

Similarly the First SRC had not recommended separate State of Punjabi speaking area of East Punjab (after position). This mistake, too, had to be rectified after agitation and fasts for more than a decade.

It is not enough to concede to the demand of separate Telengana only. Government of India should act speedily so that there are no more agitations for separate states.

January 29, 2010 Posted by | India, Indian History, Political Commentary, Politics, Religion, Sikhism, World | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Maharaja Ranjit Singh The Great

Ranjit Singh was born on 13 November 1780 and was named Budh Singh but the moment his valiant father Mahan Singh returned after subduing Pir Mohammad and his brother Ahmed Khan, capturing their forts at Sayyid nagar, Kot Pir Mohammad and Rasulnagar, first he did was to change the name of his son to Ranjt, which meant victor of battles. Mohan Singh was chief of Sakerchakia Misl, foremost of the 12 Sikh Misls.

Mahan Singh’s father’s great grand father was Desu, a cultivator who owned 25 acres of land. He belonged to village Suker Chak, near Gujranwala and so the name of Misl came to be known as Sakerchakia Misl. At the age of 50 Desu decided to meet Guru Gobind Singh as, himself being giant of a man and fearless fighter, he had heard about the great Gurus Khalsa and Khalsa’s fight with cruel Mughal rulers who had massacred lakhs of innocent Hindus during their rule. Seeing Desu touching Gurujee’s feet, Guru Gobind Singh was impressed by his strong personality. As soon Desu expressed his desire to become Sikh, Gurujee himself baptized him and named him Budha Singh. He joined the Khalsa at Anandpur Sahib and participated in many battles. Budha Singh became martyr in 1715 at Gurdas Nangal, fighting along with Banda Singh Bahadur. When Budha Singh died, his body had seven ballet wounds and 29 scars of arrows, swords and spear cuts. Similarly Ranjit Singh’s father Mahan Singh died when Ranjit was boy of 10. He was immensely inspired by his grand father Charat Singh, who fought many battles with notorious Muslim invader Ahmed Shah Abdali who had destroyed the sacred Darbar Sahib Amritsar twice. During fierce battles in 1761,1764 and 1766 Afghans tried his level best to subdue Charat Singh but after every fight the Misl’s head emerged stronger than before and annexed more territories.

By the time Ranjit Singh became Chief of the Misl at the age of 15, he had become expert horse rider, knew perfectly how to handle sword and spear as well musket. Thus in another five years by the age of 19 he had conquered Lahore. He was such a valiant person with immense self confidence that he did not care for his illness at he age of 6 when he lost one eye because of severe attack of smallpox. As C H Payne, a historian puts it: “The gifts which nature lavished on Ranjit Singh was of the abstract rather than concrete order. His strength of character and personal magnetism (were to be) the real source of his greatness.”

In December 1795, Ranjit Singh, when he was just 15 years old, wrote to Maratha Chief, Daulat Rao Scindia, who was at the time in Aligarh, to join the Sikhs so as to expel the Afghans from India once for all. But Ranjit Singh received no reply from Maratha chief and was very much disappointed as he had hoped if Marathas, another valiant people of India, would join him to complete the mission of expelling Afghans from India.

Ranjit Singh also tried to get full support from Sahib Singh Chief of Phulkian Misl, which was quite well known. Ranjit Singh invited Sahib to join him for expelling Afghans from the Sikh homeland. It was not a big surprise that Ranjit Singh received no reply from Sahib Singh Earlier, the founder of Phulkian Misl Alla Singh had betrayed the Sikhs as it was Ahmed Shah Abdali, with a view to cause split in Sikh Misls, who made Alla Singh as Raja of Patiala in 1763, though only a year back in 1762, the same Abdali had attacked and destroyed the sacred Harmander Sahib killing thousands of Sikh pilgrims and “filled the sacred sorovar with dead bodies of Sikhs and carcasses of cows. He also made, to scare Sikhs once for all, pyramid of Sikh’s heads on the site of devastated Harmander Sahib.” The two incidents of young Ranjit Singh’s approach to Maratha Chief and also Phulkian Misls Chief are very significant and demonstrate the efforts of Ranjit Singh to have alliances against Afghan invaders and destroyers of Holy Harmander Sahib.

It was 17 years old Ranjit Singh who had crushed furious Zaman Shah who had attacked Amritsar. This humiliating defeat demoralized Afghan descendent, Sikhs blood thirsty, Ahmed Shah Abdali. Thus Zaman Shah was not only defeated at Amritsar but his Army was chased to the gates of Lahore by Sikh Army of Ranjit Singh. While running back to Afghanistan Zaman Shah had lost 12 crucial guns in Jehlum River. He appealed to Ranjit Singh to rescue his guns and in return he would not oppose Ranjit Singh’s taking over Lahore. Ranjit Singh proved to be a diplomat. He readily agreed so as to become ruler of Lahore. Thus young Ranjit Singh laid the foundations of Sikh Empire, through bravery and diplomacy. Such a diplomacy proved useful and helped Ranjit Singh in dealing with British East India Company after a couple of years, as it required give and take and not obstinacy with the opponent who may or may not be more powerful.

Conquest of Lahore by 19 year old Ranjit Singh was very significant because it made him Maharaja or Ruler of not only Lahore but vast territory of Punjab. Lahore had been invaded and conquered by Muslim rulers from 1014 when Mohammad of Ghazni and thereafter it became home of many dynasties including Ghoris, Mongals, Tugh laks, Khiljis, Lodis and Suris. Even Mughal Emperor Akbar had made Lahore as the capital of his vast Empire of India in 1584. He built famous Lahore Fort which after 1799 became Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s principal residence.

Despite rivalry between Misls of Sikhs, Ranjit Singh at the young age of 19 demonstrated his and his Misls superiority by conquering vast area of Punjab and becoming ruler of Lahore as Maharaja Ranjit Singh. It is apt to compare Ranjit Singh with Alexander the Great. Though Alexander conquered vast empire from Greece to Punjab he did not or could not consolidate and rule over it. In contrast Ranjit Singh Lion of Punjab, conquered vast areas as the valiant Sikhs of Guru Gobind Singh never showed back: they, to last man, died fighting. He himself had led the Khalsa Army from the age of 15 to demonstrate that he was though chief of Misl and ruler, he was one amongst them. It is strange and painful that no Indian political leader or historian has developed on the greatness of Ranjit Singh or compared him with Alexander or Napoleon. Napoleon ultimately lost all his conquest. Neither Alexander nor Napoleon lost by treachery or conspiracy against them by their rivals. Alexander could not consolidate and had to retreat to Greece. Napoleon lost the war fighting and was defeated. Maharaja Ranjit Singh never lost in battle in 30 years of his rule. That is why he was and is known as Lion of Punjab.

In 1830, the population of Sikhs Empire was about 25 lakh of which 50% were Muslims, 42% Hindus and 7 to 8% Sikhs. This is rough estimate based on perhaps the first ever census of Punjab in 1881. Based on 1881 census Punjab’s population was placed at 2.2 million ie 22 lakhs. In 1881 Punjab included whole of west Punjab, East Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, Sikhs accounting for only 7% ie about 2 lakhs of the population against 50% Muslims, 42 % Hindus and 1% Christians and others (quoted by Patwant Singh) in ‘Empire of the Sikhs’. It becomes clear that Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s Empire extended from Satluj River to Khyber Pass near Peshawar and in the west from Jammu to Kashmir which included ladakh and Gilgit.

Perhaps it is unknown in the world history that 7% people conquered and ruled over 93% and that, too, without any religious or political turmoil. Napoleon to an extent Ranjit Singh’s contemporary tried to conquer vast Empire extending to East Europe and Russia but got defeated. Similarly during 1st World War Germany tried to repeat what Napoleon failed but faced ultimate defeat and humiliation as Germany itself was conquered and divided. It becomes, to a great extent clear, that Maharaja Ranjit Singh alone in world History of last two centuries or so conquered and ruled for 30 years over a vast Empire which included NWFP ( which was till then part of Afghanistan. Thus whole of modern world must recognize Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s greatness and also of valiant Khalsa Army. 

Maharaja Ranjit Singh despite being a Sikh Ruler was absolutely secular. There were Sikhs, mostly generals like Hari Singh Nalwa nd Akali Phoola Singh, there were Hindus like Dhyan Singh who was PM and his brother Gulab Singh, and Muslims like Faqir Azazudin who was Foreign Minister. After Ranjit Singh’s demise traitors like Teja Singh became prominent ministers. That is how the Sikh Empire was lost.

I shall just quote from my memory a few lines from Shah Mohammad’s poem on First Sikh War with British East India Company. Shah Mohammad, a Muslim poet of Punjab, who wrote many poems in Punjabi and recited them in Punjab says:

“Teja Singh see Yaar Farangian daa”

 After mentioning in brief Teja Singh’s treachery of being friend of Britishers, Shah Mohammada writes:

Shah Mohammada Singhan Ne Gorian De

Wang Nimbuan Lahu Nichor Ditte

Je Kar Hondi Sarkar Taan Mul Paandee

Jehrian Khalse Ne Teghan Morian Ne

Shah Mohamada Ik Sarkar Bajon

Faujan Jit Ke Annt Nuun Horian Ne

In simple English translation Shah Mohammad says:

Sikh soldiers squeezed British soldiers blood, as one squeezes lemon.

If  Maharaja Ranjit Singh had been alive,

He would have appreciated and honoured the Sikh soldiers for bravery

As some Sikh soldiers fought with just swords in their hands.

Shah Mohammed concludes:

But for Sarkar (Maharaja Ranjit Singh) Sikh having won ultimately lost.

Sikhs lost first Sikh War and Second Sikh War because of treachery of men like Teja Singh and Dogras like Dhyan Singh, who was Prime Miniser during Ranjit Singh’s lifetime, and his brother Gulab Singh and conspiracy of British East India Company.

January 8, 2010 Posted by | Achievers, Biography, India, Indian History, Muslims, Politics, Punjabi, Religion, Sikhism, World History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hindutva – Its true meaning and implications

After defeat of BJP in the 2009 elections, there is much talk about HIndutva, whether it should be diluted to keep the RSS with BJP as its cadre party and source or to abandon it altogether to make BJP a truly secular so that it also attracts Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and other small minorities of India to make BJP truly All India Party and an All India challenge to Indian National Congress.

 The word Hindutva was coined and used first of all by V.D. Savarkar. “Hinduism is a religion that all Hindus follow with all the rituals and worshiping all the Hindu Gods, Lord Rama, Krishna, Hanuman and other regional gods whose statues are all over India and worshiped by devout Hindus. It also means respect and if possible knowledge of Ramayana, Mahabarat, Vedas, Shastra and other many millennium old Hindu or Vedic Literature. Hindutva also means that India Civilization embraces all those who live in India, to whatever religion they belong but they have to love Indian Civilization in contrast to Muslim Civilization as propagated in Mecca and Christian Civilization as explained and propagated by Pope of Rome.”

 RSS Chief K S Sudarshan in 2201 while addressing a large gathering in Hardwar said ” The time has come when both Muslims and Christians who are living in India should Indianize their religions. They should sever their links with Mecca and Pope and instead become swadeshi.” (The Tribune Chandigarh March 9, 2001) An extremist Hindu Brig B N Sharma (Retd) in his book, ” A Nation on Fire,” defines Hindutva as: Hindutva collective essence of ” Hinduism and is the end product of three elements, cultural nationalism, intense patriotism, and a pride in the collective memory of India’s past glory.” But Brig Sharma, as the title of book reveals, is not moderate but fundamentalist. He has ridiculed so called seculars who are more concerned with vote bank than with nation’s interest.

 If BJP follows fully and faithfully what K.S Sudarshan says then BJP can never become all embracing Indian Political Party where followers of any religion will be welcome, just as Hindus, without any discrimination. It is pertinent to quote Dr Chaudhary as under.

 “The seeds of pathological antipathy and diabolical hatred against Muslims and Christians in India sown by Savarkar have now fully fructified, thanks to the constant watering and manuring of seeds at the hands of the Sangh Parivar. It resulted into the shameless act of demolition of Babri Masjid at Ayodhya in 1992 followed by communal holocaust all over the country in which hundreds of innocent citizens lost their lives. Then came the systematic persecution of Christians resulting into the horrendous act of burning alive of an Australian Christian doctor engaged into healing lepers, along with his adolescent sons in Orissa.” (South Asia Today)

 If BJP follows Hindutva, in its full form with all the implicayions, it may attract towards BJP more and more Hindus with the active help of more than a dozen RSS volunteering organizations in virtually all fields like student and teacher organization, workers of industrial and academic fields, women and in tribal sphere etc,etc… But still it will remain only a Hindu Communal organization. To be a Secular All India Party BJP will have to dilute HIndutva and make it appear truly an Indian Civilization and part of all comprehensive Indian Cultural, linguistic, religious and ethnic groups of whole of India.

 It was mainly Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s farsight and determination that transformed Bhartya Jan Sangh a Hindu Party like RSS into BJP an All India National Party like Indian National Congress and captured power in 1998 and ruled the country for full term of 5 years without virtual alliance with any party except Akali Dal as in Punjab. If BJP tries to be a truly secular party lot of uncommitted voters from religions and regions will support it.

 Since Advani’s praise for Jinnaha, when he visited Pakistan, without bothering to go deep into Jinnaha’s thinking in 1940’s and actions in 1946 to instigate West Bengal Government of Muslim League to abandon the rights and rules of and go ahead with ‘Direct Action’ which led to Kolkata Killings—it was certain that Advani should either quit BJP Presidentship and as leader of opposition, Lok Sabha, or would be ousted. Accordingly during early December 09, on the advice of RSS Chief, virtually little known in national politics, Nitin Gadkari 52 years old was chosen to replace Advani as BJP president. In Advani’s place Sushma Swaraj, who once contested elections against Sonia Gandhi in South India though lost but proved to be both daring and well-versed in parliamentary affairs, was nominated as leader of opposition while another prominent BJP young leader Jaitley was to continue BJP leader in Rajya Sabha.

 All these developments had to be stated in brief because both Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitely are moderates and not enthusiastic about Hindutava. They are more interested, like Vajpayee, to make BJP an All India Party to include all Indians of all castes and religions. It is heartening to note that in his first interview on 20th December 2009, Godkari, new BJP Chief has said ” I would like to involve more Dalits, Tribals and Muslims in the BJP” He father said: “I would like to concentrate on youth workers and farmers. I will concentrate my polities of development at the national level.” If Godkari sticks to what he has said in this interview, it would mean dilution of Hindutava for BJP.

No doubt Muslim terrorists, jehadis of many hues and Taliban by their incursions and killings through suicide bombing like 9/11 in USA and 26/11 in Bombay have encouraged RSS followers, Israelis and some Christian Countries to give befitting reply. But for peace of the world and peace in their own country tact, patience and action are required as and when necessary. So far as India is concerned because of Indian farmers, skilled and unskilled labourers and since last two decades Indian technocrats and managers being in limelight particularly in USA, it is imperative that Indians shun fundamentalism of Hindutava. India must remain secular and India’s image should be that of biggest democracy in the world.

December 22, 2009 Posted by | Corruption, India, Indian History, Muslims, Pakistan, Pakistan's Origin, Creation and Turmoil, Political Commentary, Politics, Punjabi, Religion, Sikhism, Terrorism, World History | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Guru Gobind Singh Ji

Humble tribute by Harcharan Singh Chan

Guru Gobind Singh Ji, the 10th Guru of the Sikhs, like Guru Nanak Dev ji, the first guru, considered all human beings as the creation of one and the same god, the Creator, whom Hindus called Karta and muslim called Karim both refer to the same almighty God. In Guru Gobind Singh’s own word “ Hindu Turk(Muslims) Kou (Rafji, Imam Safi) manas ki Jaat Sabhe ek Pehchanbo.”

One of the most important and the most democratic hymns of Guru Gobind Singh ji is : What Ever I am it is because of the Khalsa. Otherwise, but for the Khalsa I am nothing. No saint or leader of humanity has said and written such touching and selfless words and meant what he said. To emphasise the universal greatness of Guru Gobind Singh ji. I take this opportunity to quote Gurujee’s words from hymns of Dosam Granth:

Judh Jeetai inhi ke parsad aur daan kare
Aah oag taray inhike parsad, inhiki kirpa faan dhaam bharray.
Inhi ke prasad vidya lee, inhi ki krippa sabh shatru mare
Inhi ki krippa ke sajje hum hein
nahin moh sou gharib karor paray.

Translated in simple English, The great guru means:

I have won wars because of Khalsa and able to give charities because of Khalsa.
I have been able to overcome all sorrows and ailments because of Khalsa and fill treasury of Khalsa. It is through the grace of Khalsa that I have got education and triumphed over all enemies. It is because of Khalsa that I have attained such high status otherwise there are millions of poor and insignificant people like me.

This hymn was written by tenth Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Here in my humility and reverence for great Guru I say with confidence that in the annals of world history there have been a few human beings who during 42 years of life attained unparallel distinction as a poet and scholar, who learnt Hindi, Persian, Sanskrit and Punjabi and wrote poetry and prose of examplry distinction. His ZAFAR NAMA in Persian where the great Guru follower of saint par excellence Guru Nanak Dev Ji, gave jurification for taking up arms against Mughal Army. Saying “Hama Heelta Dar Guzasht – Halal Ast Burdan Ba Shamsheer Dast” – meaning when all other alternatives of trying for justice and peace fail it is justified to take up arms to end cruelty.

Guru Ji was a great warrior too. He led the battles himself to inspire his followers, (the Khalsa) that he had created, were both high in spirit and valour. So Guru Ji said: Khalsa is my true face and I live in Khalsa.

Guru Ji sacrificed all his four sons, two aged 15 and 17 Sahibzada AJIT SINGH and Sahibzada JUJHAR SINGH died fighting against hordes of Mughals soldiers and Guru Ji’s Sahibzada ZORAVAR SINGH and Sahibzada FATEH SINGH two younger sons aged 8 and 10 were captured by the viceroy of Sirhand who was so cruel that he got the innocent children bricked alive. As Guru Ji’s children, they naturally refused to abondon the Khalsa faith and accept Islam. Guru Ji did not mourn the demise of his all the four children as mortals do but said “ What does it matter if I have lost four children there are many thousands of Khalsa who are alive.”

Guru Ji was a great organizer. He founded the Khalsa the Pure who would be ready to sacrifice all for the sake of justice who would die fighting and never surrender. After creating the Khalsa by giving them nectar Amrit, the great Guru Ji first asked for 5 Sees(heads) then he gave Amrit to 5 who became 5 pyaras. Thereafter the great guru himself bowed before them and got Amrit from them and so the congregation acclaimed wah wah Guru Gobind Singh, Appe Guru and Appe Chela – that the great guru is both the guru and the disciple.

Guru Gobind Singh was a rarest possible genius, philospher, poet, organizer, a valiant soldier and a brave leader of Khalsa soldiers and one of the rarest and greatest who willingly sacrificed all his four sons. Not only the Sikhs but whole humanity bows before him for his greatness, selflessness, spirituality, honesty and integrity. Guru Gobind Singh Ji always emphasized on good deeds, helping the needy and destitute. In this famous couplet he says:- “Deh Shiva Bar Mohi Ehe Shubh Karman Te Kabhum Naa Tarron.”

Oh god bless me that I never hesitate or waiver from doing good to others and live for helping others. This is the message often quoted by many eminent saints, social, religious and political personalities in Gurudwaras, Mandirs and other Congregations.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji declared that he is servant of God and no one should call him God. Who so ever calls him God may go to hell. In Guru Ji’s own words:

“ Mein huin Parampurakh ka dassa dekhan Ayun Jagat Tamasha.
Jo humko Pamashar uchar hoe soi te sabh Narak Kund mei porehein jai”

To sum it up, these are in brief teachings of Guru Gobind Singh Ji which are enshrined in our hearts and minds for the last 300 years since Guru Ji’s demise and these shall guide mankind to truthful, helpful and selfless living till eternity

October 5, 2009 Posted by | India, Indian History, Poems, Religion, Sikhism | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Genocide Of Sikhs and Forgiveness

Genocide of Sikhs was allowed after Indira’s murder
When thousands of Sikhs were tortured to death
Atrocities on Sikhs went on for years
But not a single criminal was punished
Though commission after commission investigated
Yet time has come to forgive and forget
As valiant Sikhs do forgive and forget
By recalling: the suffering and torture of Guru Arjun
Remember how Guru Teg Bahadur was martyred
On order of Aurangzeb
How cruelly two young sons of Guru Gobind Singh
Were bricked alive
Yet valiant Sikhs have to forget
Attack on Golden Temple and genocide of Sikhs
Just as they have forgotten
Partition riots of 1947
In 47 lakhs of Sikhs perished
In 84 tens of thousand perished
But tragedy is that in 47 Sikhs were victims
Of British conspiracy instigating Muslims
But in 84 they were killed
By their own army in their own land

August 28, 2009 Posted by | Indian History, Poems, Sikhism | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Attack On Golden Temple

Oh Indira!
To remain in power,
You quarreled with supreme power
You ordered attack on Golden Temple
The Indian army attacked with rockets and tanks
Besides destroying Akal Takhat
And damaging darbar sahib
Your army defiled nectar filled tank.
Oh Indira!
You were Prime Minister of whole of India
You were guardian of all religions and culture of India.
How could you forget that?
How could You be forgiven for that cruel act?
Attack on Golden Temple
Shocked all, particularly Sikhs all over world
It was like an attack-had Saudi Arabian army.
Attacked holy Muslim shrine of Mecca
Or if Italian troops had been ordered
By Italian government to destroy Church of Rome
Or some Indian Prime Minister had ordered
Attack on Kashi or holy Mathura temple
You Indira!
Failed to realize the gravity
Of your selfish act of attack on Golden Temple
Thousands of Sikhs including women and children
Were killed or wounded.
As the day of attack was martyrdom day Guru Arjun
And Sikhs had come for a holy dip in holy tank
Oh Indira!
It is said and unfortunate that you were killed
By Sikhs in revenge
Just as they had killed Dyer the British General
Who had ordered attack in Jallianwala Bagh
Earlier Aurangzeb had ordered killing of Guru Teg Bahadur
And Sikhs destroyed the Mughal rule
By taking up arms against Mughal rule
As Guru Gobind Singh’s Khalsa,
Under Ranjit Singh’s army of Khlasa
Oh Indira!
Had you served India honestly
Subdued your hunger for power
And not ordered attack on Golden Temple
You would have lived long and for ever

August 28, 2009 Posted by | Sikhism | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Assassination of Indira Gandhi and its Aftermath

After attack on Golden Temple and demolition of Akal Takhat by Indian Army authorized by Indira Gandhi, it is said that Prime Minister was warned by intelligence agencies that there could be attempt on her life. She was even advised to do away with Sikh members of her personal body guards. But she rejected the suggestion saying that ‘aren’t we secular’ ( The Times). She did not, realize the gravity of attack on Golden Temple on Sikhs, or not forgetting that British General Dyer who had ordered indiscriminate firing in Jallianwale Bagh in April 1919 killing more than 400 peaceful Punjabi’s was shot dead in London by Udham Singh, a Sikh who waited for years. Thus Indira Gandhi who had masterminded the attacks on Golden Temple or even Gian Zail Singh who was President but could not do anything to prevent the attack, by resigning or even threatening to resign, were likely to be targets.

On 31st October 1984, Indira Gandhi was shot at point blank and killed by her two Sikh body guards, Beant Singh and Satwant Singh early in the morning while walking from her residence to her adjoining office. Both Beant Singh and Satwant Singh had gone to Punjab to meet their families. It seems that they were shocked to hear and see the impact of operation Blue Star on not only those who had lost their Kith and Kin in Golden Temple on Guru Arjan’s martyrdom day but even ordinary Sikhs who must have wept while telling the atrocities and death of hundreds of innocent old Sikh peasants, women and children, besides thousands of men. Indiscriminate violence against sikhs began on the 31st October night, after Rajiv Gandhi had been sworn in as P.M after 6 pm. Till then Indira Gandhi’s death had not been announced on AIR though she had died on the spot and had been brought dead to the AIIMS hospital.

Assassination of Indira Gandhi or some VIP like Zail Singh or other was feared as Operation Blue Star was an attack on Golden Temple, on the Sikh religion and sikh honour. More than 10,000 Sikh had been butchered indiscriminately including old men, women and children by a cleverly manipulated crisis by Indira Gandhi to humiliate the Sikhs with a view to pose in the next election as a Durga—goddess of Hindus, because Indira Gandhi had lost hope of winning South and East India.

Some reaction even, violent reaction to be PM’s assassination was feared. But it could not, by any stretch of imagination, be thought that Congress, second line of leadership will lead the gangs, organize arson, loot and murder of Sikh’s simultaneously in many towns, Railway trains and buses Killing of Sikhs continued for 4 days with active participation of local police force.

We were eye witness to these traumatic happenings when Gurdwara just across our house was being gharoaed stoned and burnt and Holy Granth thrown and burnt. The details of these 1947-partition, like riots in the Capital can be best seen in Indian Express of Nov 1 to Nov 20. From the rough estimates it is gathered that more than 10,000 Sikhs perished in this “Nadirshahi” of Congress in certain cases there were 3 to 4 windows in one family done.

The Sikhs outside Punjab were hostages at the mercy of the hoodlums who could be organized, financed and instigated to commit unprintable crimes against Sikh men, women and children whether they happened to be poor workers in jhugis and settlement colonies or rich business men in posh colonies, middle class workers traveling to and from office or sikh army officers going to duty. Even clean shaven sikh truck drivers who are just sikhs by birth, neither extremists nor religious , all who were unfortunate on the days when hell itself was let loose, were mercilessly beaten and burnt alive.

In this genocide of Sikhs more than 25,000 sikhs were Killed—burnt alive by pouring kerosene on their heads in the presence of their wives, children, sisters and mothers. Some were burnt by putting burning tyres in their necks, some were killed with steel rods supplied by hooligans and Congress workers, some were dragged out of their houses, there hands tied with one end of there turbans and with the other end of turban tied on their necks, they were dragged and killed.

Sikh’s women were molested and raped in the presence of their husbands, sons and young daughters and old mothers. Such inhuman torture and killing of Sikhs went on for 4 days while police was just on lookers. Even policemen did not come forward to save the life or honour of such women victims.

It was not only Delhi, though Delhi was the worst sight of slaughter of Sikhs but in cities like Kanpur where 500 sikhs perished in the same way and dozen of other towns, in trains and buses. This was something like partition riots of 1947. In 1947 when trains full of dead bodies of Sikhs and Hindus reached Punjab, when about a million of Sikhs and Hindus were butchered, Sikhs retaliated by killing Muslims in Punjab and sending their dead bodies to Pakistan. This retaliation helped to end massacre of Sikhs and Hindus in Pakistan. But in Delhi in 1984 where Sikhs were hardly 5 percent and it was their own country, could not and did not retaliate. They only suffered silently for 4-5 days, and wept for days, months and years, but no justice was done. Not a single criminal was found guilty and sentenced to death or imprisonment. Khushwant Singh, eminent journalist and writer in his book My Bleeding Punjab writers:

“ At break of dawn of 1st November, the anti Sikh pogrom got going in right earnets. Truckloads of hoodlums armed with steel rods, jerry cans full of Kerosene oil and petrol went round the city setting fire to gurdwaras. One adjacent to my apartment was raided by a gang which threw out the carpets, the canopy along with the holy book, the Granth, in the courtyard and made a bonfire of them. They roughed up the 65 year old priest. The gang departed taking the Gurdwara money box amid shouts of “Indira Gandhi Zindabad”.

“ In the heart of New Delhi’s main shopping center, Connaught Circus, Sikh owned furnitures shops were set ablaze while crowds cheered and police looked on. There were no signs of grief over the death of Prime Minister but plenty of envy, hate and malicious pleasure at seeing Sikhs who had done better than they being cut to size”.

Khushwant Singh adds about his own grief panic and reaction:

“ I awaited my turn. I felt like a partridge in a partridge shoot waiting to be flushed out of cover and shot on the wing. For the first time I realized what jews must have felt like in Nazi Germany…. Get out of your place was the repetitive advice (to Khushwant Singh by his well wishers). But go where and how? They were killing Sikhs in trains, buses, taxis, scooters. The killings assumed the proportion of genocide of Sikh’s community.
I had half an hour to pack up. I wrenched off the nameplate from my door. What could I take with me from my home where I had lived ever since I had been driven out of Pakistan. They could have the bloody lot ( all my belongings ). Thirty seven years ago I left the same kind of stuff to Pakistan, now I would leave to Hindustan”.

“Romesh Thapar bundled us into the Car of a diplomat. We found sanctuary in the home of Rolf and Jeanne Gauffin of the Swedish Embassy. In my own homeland I had become a refugee, deprived of my birth right to mourn the assassination of my Prime Minister. Instead I mourned the deaths of thousands of men who were killed for no other reason than that they happened to belong to the same community as the Prime Minister assassins.” (My Bleeding Punjab).

Retired Supreme Court Justice V.M.Tarkunde, concluded in his report ‘ the carnage (of Sikhs) was orchestrated by Congress’. “ According to it plans for their massacre (of Sikhs) were nurtured by party leaders on the night of 31st October…Kerosene was collected, killers were gathered from both inside and outside the localities, Jhuggis (huts) and houses of Sikhs identified”.

The “SUNDAY” a widely circulated weekly from Calcutta, described Rajiv Gandhi’s silence on the subject as “ the first black mark he has got on his otherwise clean image”.

“Police instead of curbing violence by taking action against the killers of Sikhs in 1984 massacre of Sikhs in Delhi. The role of Delhi Police in preventing any viable Sikh defence is well testified. In a number of cases, Police personnel confiscated licensed fire arms from Sikh’s and shot at the defenders if they resisted”. (Religion Violence and Political Mobilisation).

Following quotations are from book by Manoj Mitra and H.S. Phoolka:
‘When a Tree Shook Delhi’.

It must be said that Mr Phoolka is a very eminent lawyer who has been fighting right from the beginning for justice for victims of 1984 Genocide of Sikhs.

Annexures from book when a Tree Shook Delhi by Mr Mitra and Sardar H.S. Phoolka. Again, “It would be startling to note that General Arora hero of 1971 war against Pakistan and who received surrender from Pakistan’s General Niazi who had agreed to hand area 90,000 Pakistani soldiers to Indian Army as Prisoners of War, had to be escorted and took shelter in the house Shri I.K. Gujral.”

‘Zail’s car stoned, panic in Delhi’ was a headline in The Telegraph, which said: ‘ The President’s motorcade, as it proceeded towards AIIMS from the airport, was heavily brickbatted. Three cars in the motorcade were damaged, though the President, who was in his bulletproof car, was unaffected.’

In his affidavit before the Justice Ranganath Misra Commission, the first judicial inquiry ordered in 1985, Jagjit Singh gave an eyewitness account of the second attack on President Zail Singh. “ All the stone pelting, he said, was done by a small group which raised slogans such as ‘Giani Murdabad’ (Down with Zail Singh), ‘Sardar gaddar hai’ (Sikhs are traitors) and ‘Khoon ka badla khhon’ (Avenge murder with murder).”

As hundreds of affidavits were filed during and after1984 anti-Sikh riots and placed before the justice Ranga Nath Mishra Commission Jain-Aggarwal Committee was set up by Government to examine all these affidavits. After fully examining these affidavits , Jain-Aggarwal Committee submitted its report to the Lt Governor of Delhi, as required on 6th August 1993.The report highlighted the “colossal indifference towards the loss of human life and property of the Sikhs.” The committee also stated that the police, in many cases either did not register FIRs or deliberately misregistered them and subsequently “sabotaged” the investigation so that the cases could not stand up in court as many did.

It is noteworthy that the Jain-Aggarwal committee in view of its findings “recommended severe punishment for 298 dishonest police officers, the registration of 333 fresh cases and reinvestigation of 129 other cases to undo the misdeeds of earlier investigations. The committee also indicted many local congress functionaries who later on went on to become M P’s and Ministers for instigating and leading the rioters. No wonder no action has been taken against officials like the Police Commissioner S.C.Tondon who was rewarded by crucial appointment after retirement” ( Pioneer dt 19-08-93).

Had the guilty police officers and congress leaders and personnel listed by Jain-Aggarwal committee been punished, there would not have been demolition of Babri Masjid and consequent riots in many states particularly UP and Maharashtra, Bombay in particular casting thousands of lives, disturbing peace and harmony, now, between Hindus and Muslims.

It is regrettable and painful for all Sikhs all over the world and also thousands of non Sikhs and non Punjabis all over India that not a single Culprit and Criminal out of hundreds of politicians, policemen and paid ruffians has been convicted and punished even after 25 years when more than 10,000 Sikhs were massacred in the genocide of Sikhs in 1984. It is slur on our politicians and on our democracy.

Excerpts of testimonies before the Misra and Nanavati Commissions:
Writer Patwant Singh before the Nanavati Commission ….
“That Air Chief Marshall Arjan Singh (Retd), Lt. Gen. Jagjit Singh Aurora (Retd.), Brig. Sukhjit Singh (Retd.), S. Gurbachan Singh and I called on the President of India in the morning of 1 November 1984. We spent one hour with the President and told him that numerous Sikhs were being killed all over the capital, emphatically spelling out for him the violence overtaking the Sikhs throughout the city. We made clear that he as the President was morally and constitutionally bound to put an end to it. He replied, ‘I do not have powers to intervene.”

Former Law Minister Shanti Bhushan before the Nanavati Commission….

“ That we visited Shakarpur, Pandav Nagar, and several east Delhi’s colonies, and rescued many trapped Sikh families, and took them to the nearest Gurdwara….We also saw many dead bodies of Sikhs who had been killed, and some bodies were still burning.”

Former Finance Minister Madhu Dandavate before the Misra Commission

“When the train reached Tughlakabad Station (on the suburbs of Delhi) on 2 November morning, a large number of persons carrying iron rods, axes, crow bars, etc. entered our train. They declared that no Sikh would be allowed to leave the train alive. At that time, I found that some Sikhs in the adjoining compartments were pulled down by those outsiders carrying weapons. I found two Sikhs killed and thrown on the platform, and then their dead bodies were set on fire on the platform. The police standing on the platform made no efforts to prevent either the killing or burning of the Sikhs.”

In october 84 I had gone on leave to my home in Delhi and was witness to destroying the Gurudwara opposite our house in Janak Puri B-1 Block and burning of Holy Guru Granth Sahib and throwing our in Nallah other copies of Holy Granth Sahib. Even my house was locked and glass panes of drawing room broken. Luckily my tenant in first floor was an Air force officer Squadron Leader. He came down immediately and faced the mob, saying this is my house and thus our family and our house was saved. It was a miracle. For three days and nights we did not move out. Then and there I decided that I shall not go back to Lucknow to join duty in the institute. So I applied for voluntary retirement and remained on leave for 3 months till Feb 28 when I went to handover charge and say goodbye to Director and the Institute.

Before concluding the chapter on assassination of Indira Gandhi and its aftermath. I would like to reproduce my four poems which I wrote in those days and were first published in my Punjabi book ‘Payyar Te Rossa’ and afterwards I translated these poems and included in my book ‘ Pluralist Politics and Poems of Revance Love and Sorrow’.

August 28, 2009 Posted by | India, Religion, Sikhism | , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Attack On Golden Temple

It is apt and befitting to explain in brief the importance and sanctity of Golden Temple. Foundation of Golden Temple was laid by a Muslim Saint, Mian Mir under aegis of Guru Ram Das, so that as preached by Guru Nanak Dev, it is one and the same God to whom Muslims call Allah and Hindus call Ram and that all humanity is one and as elucidated in Guru Granth Sahib, Holy Book of Sikhs called perennial Guru after Guru Gobind Singh—AVVAL ALLAHA NOOR UPAYA, KUDRAT KE SABH BANDE EK NOOR SE SABH JAG UPJYA KON BHALE KON MANDE.

During British rule Golden Temple remained assigned to hereditary Mahants. It suited the British rulers so that they could keep watch over the Sikh Gurudwaras and indirectly on Sikhs, so that they do not unite against them and create problems as they valued the support of Sikhs, particularly the Sikh Soldiers who constituted during and upto first World War about 50% of Indian Army and were instrumental in Allied victory in Europe against German Army. It will be noteworthy that on India Gate hundreds of names of Sikh soldiers are inscribed who died fighting in 1st World War, it was a British tribute to valiant Sikh soldiers.

It was only in 1925 that the Sikhs rose to demand the handing over of Gurudwaras like Golden Temple and NanKana Sahib (Birth place of Guru Nanak Dev ji). After prolonged agitation which was absolutely non-violent and in which more than one hundred Sikhs laid down their lives (SHAHID’s) the British relented and accepted the demand of Shromani Gurudwara Porbandhak Committee (the apex body of Sikh’s and handed over the management of all Gurudwaras including Golden Temple to SGPC (organization).On the non-violent agitation of valiant Sikhs, Mahatma Gandhi sent a telegraph message hailing the victory as ‘first decisive battle for India’s freedom won’.

But Indira Gandhi not caring for the sanctity of the Golden Temple and Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent struggle for India’s independence decided to send Indian Army with tanks and mortars to attack the Golden Temple, holiest of holy Sikh shrine, apparently to flush out Bhinderanwale and his militants, whom Indira Government with the assistance of Darbara Singh CM of Punjab and Zail Singh then Home Minister of central Government had made a hero of prominence.

For a while one should close ones eyes and imagine: how Christians all over the world would have reacted if Italian Army had attacked Vatican with tanks and destroyed part of church of Rome. Also how Muslims all over the world would have cried and taken revenge if Mecca, their holiest shrine, where millions of Muslims from all over the world go for “Haj” every year, had been attacked with tanks by Saudi Arabian Army. Lastly how Hindus all over the world have wept if Mathura, Kashi temples in north or Tirupati temple in South had been attacked by Indian Army with all the force of tanks and latest arms?

Golden Temple for Sikhs all over the world is as sacred and sacrosanct as Mecca for Muslims, Rome for Christians and Kashi and Mathura for Hindus. One fails to understand why Indira Gandhi chose to attack Golden Temple after almost year long preparation? Was it to teach Akali’s and Sikh’s a lesson in revenge, for Akali’s opposition to emergency during which out of total of 80,000 arrests all over India as many as 30,000 Akali’s and Sikhs courted arrest? Whatever the reason attack on Golden Temple was most unfortunate and unforgivable.

Indian Army units stationed at all the entry points (gates) of Golden Temple but allowed Bhinderanwalis associates and militants to enter with arms. Army units and armed soldiers could prevent their entry or at least disarm them but, seemingly from orders from Delhi they did not.

On the other hand government cleverly chose a Sikh Major General R S Barar who was asked to contact two senior Lieutant Generals Sunder ji and Dayal as situation in Punjab and in Golden Temple Complex had become very serious and the militants housed in Akal Takhat might have to be eliminated by military action. It is well known that it was Indira Gandhi decision to attack Golden Temple to flush out or kill the militants. Accordingly on 2nd June 1984 Indira spoke on All India Radio about bloodshed saying “ all sectors of Punjab not to shed blood but shed hatred ”. This was just to justify her decision to attack Golden Temple. Accordingly, without waiting any further on 3rd June ‘Punjab’s road, rail and telephone links with the whole of India were cut off so that Punjab was fully segregated and could have no contacts out of Punjab during impeding Army attack. On the other hand, strangely curfew in Amritsar was lifted on 3rd June as it was martyrdom day of Guru Arjan Dev so that more people could gather in Golden Temple. Sporadic firing stated on 4th by both the Army and militants. But actual Army attack was launched on the night of 5th— the BALCK DAY for Sikhs all over the world for Punjab and for Indira Gandhi and even for whole of india.

As there was multi-directional firing from militants of Bhinderanwale, the army commander asked for and got immediate permission to use tanks. Accordingly about ten tanks entered the premises of Golden Temple and started shooting at Akal Takhat which was virtually destroyed in a couple of hours of firing and fighting. It is estimated that more than 500 Indian Army troops last their lives while most of the militants including Bhinderanwala and Shubeg Singh were killed. In addition more than 3000 pilgrims who had come from adjoining villages to pay homage to Guru Arjan Dev an morlyedom Day (called Gurupurab) also lost their lives in the premises of Golden Temple. The pilgrims included innocent children and their mothers and fathers.

R.S. Barar who was in charge of operation ‘Blue Star’ says ‘ it must be admitted that the tenacity with which the militants held their ground, the stubborn velor with which they fought the battle and the high degree of confidence displayed by them merits praise and recognition’. Another Sikh General who won the battle against Pakistani forces in East Pakistan (East Bengal now Bangla Desh) made startling statement : The Army was used to finish a problem created by the government. This is the kind of action that is going to ruin the army (Qutated by Patwant Singh in his book ‘The Fatal Misealulation’).

Speech of a non-sikh, non-Punjab but a true Indian, caring for all religions, all cultures and provinces, on the attack on Golden Temple is an eye opener. Shri Parvathaneni Upendra spoke on the white paper in Parliament on July 25, 1984 as under:

None of us either the government or the Akali’s or the rest of the opposition has come out with any honour or with any flying colours in this sordid drama. Everyone of us has proved unequal to the task and as an Indian and as a nationalist I feel ashamed and I hang my head in shame at what has happened in Punjab recently, particularly in June. And ultimately for the first time in India’s history the Army had to be sent to a religious institution. Whatever may be the reason to the justification of the same, it is a shameful thing”.

BJP leader, L.K. Advani who, too, is non Sikh and non Punjabi spoke on the tragedy of army attack and destruction of Akal Takhat, on White Paper. He said, “ After all the destruction of Akal Takhat pained not only those who proclaim themselves as Sikhs, but even those like the rest of us”.

Khushwant Singh eminent journalist has written a book ‘My Bleeding Punjab’ on operation Blue Star and genocide of Sikhs after Indira’s assassination. He is emphatic that attack on Golden Temple could be avoided. Khushwant Singh wrote: “It could not have been very difficult for a limited commando action to capture Bhinderanwale dead or alive. At long last when the Government decided to act, it did so at the Worst possible time the death anniversary of Guru Arjan, when thousands of pilgrims were visiting the temple and the worst manner, storming the temple with tanks and armoured cars and blasting the Akal Takhat” He further added ‘ One lesson to be learnt from storming of the Golden Temple is that it was the worst way of handling the explosive situation. Another is that political economic and social problems are not solved by superior gun power but by persuasion, by give and take”. It is noteworthy that Khushwant Singh calls himself agnostic (not religious) and he also returned his title of Padam Shri conferred on him by Government of India.

From the painful reaction on storming of Akal Takhat in Golden Temple Complex and death of thousands of pilgrims women and children who have nothing to do with militant Sikhs or Bhinderanwala, it is crystal clear that deployment of Army, with tanks and armored cars was unnecessary.Had Indira Gandhi used persuasiveness and was determined to solve Bhinderanwala problem peacefully and diplomatically with use of minimum force , that, too, if other alternate way of settlement had failed. But as stated earlier, it was clear that Indira had ‘decided’ to storm Golden Temple without bothering to consider the reaction and consequences. Being a Congress leader and PM representing congress Party, she should have followed, if not fully, to some extent Gandhi ji’s philosophy of non-violence and her father Prime Minister Nehru, listened to the advice of senior civil servants and not her psychophantal ministers who were bound to approve, or keep quiet, to all policy matters and decisions she had made up her mind to take and implement. This has proved to be tragic, for her, for Sikhs and for the nation.

In June 1984, I was a senior government servant, though I heard on radio that Indian Army had entered the Golden Temple complex with tanks and destroyed the Akal Takhat, just opposite the Golden Temple proper. I silently shed tears on hearing the tragic news but could not and did not express or share my agony with any one. As senior Administrative officer of National Institute ( Indian Institute of Sugarcane Research Lucknow), I was virtually and actually head of the Institute in the absence of Director. Before going on tour which was once every month for a week or more, he would come to my room, which was opposite his room, and say “Singh Sahib now Institute is Aap Ke Hawale ie under you”. Being in such a position with full responsibility for the National Institute that had strength of more than 500 technical officers and workers. I supressed my agony and feeling fully and devoted to my duties from 8AM to 8PM. But I did express my feelings in my diary as under:

“This day last month, this time (11PM) something terrible happened in Golden Temple. I as a Government servant would not comment on it but I as a Sikh as an Indian and as a human being feel deeply hurt by the events of the night of 4th and 5th June 1984, May some hidden power, social, religious, revolutionary Marxist or anything save this country and its people.

I had been silently shedding tears every night in my bunglow without telling to anyone in the institute where there were some Sikhs, too.

August 28, 2009 Posted by | India, Religion, Sikhism | , , , , , , | Leave a comment