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Monday, June 28, 2010

SIKHS Forgot the Holocaust and Genocide as They Got a Sikh Khatri PM and Now India reviewing blacklist of Sikhs abroad!Nationalities and EXCLUDED Communities in India, thus, Mind Controlled with Treacherous Icons like Mayawati, Lalu, Paswan, Mulayam,

SIKHS Forgot the Holocaust and Genocide as They Got a Sikh Khatri PM and Now India reviewing blacklist of Sikhs abroad!Nationalities and  EXCLUDED Communities in India, thus, Mind Controlled with Treacherous Icons like Mayawati, Lalu, Paswan, Mulayam, Karunanidhi, Pawar, Jailalita, Shibu Soren and Mamata Banejee!

Indian Holocaust My Father`s Life and Time, Four Hundred Five

Palash Biswas


http://indianholocaustmyfatherslifeandtime.blogspot.com/
 
Welcome to Sikh-History.com a Free website about Sikh history. Here you can find biographies of Sikh Gurus, GreatSikh Warriors, Sikh personalities and ...
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SIKHS Forgot the Holocaust and Genocide as They Got a Sikh Khatri PM and Now India reviewing blacklist of Sikhs abroad!Nationalities and  EXCLUDED Communities in India, thus, Mind Controlled with Treacherous Icons like Mayawati, Lalu, Paswan, Mulayam, Karunanidhi, Pawar, Jailalita, Shibu Soren and Mamata Banejee! Just remember the Parliamentary Nuclear Debate Drama in which Akali Members bailed out the First Sikh Prime Minister! BSP supporters and the SC Communities may Tolerate all the NONSENSE written and spoken against our ancestors, may witness Blood Rivers in Full Swing and Ethnic Cleansing, but they would NOt hear anything against MAYAWATI, their Queen!Disham Guru Shibu Soren is DEEP Rooted in Graft and may not have the same Magic, but OBC communities are die hard supporters of Mulayam, Lalu, Nitish, Uma Bharati and Basundhara Raje, the Dravid South India may run a Suicide spree just for Ayer Brahamin Jailalita and Screen Icon Karunanidhi! In Bengal, SC, OBC and Muslims who used to be the Back Bone of the Marxist Regimented Gestapo Regime of Manusmriti, have crossed the Fence just to see CHANGE maneuvered by yet Another Brahmin Mamata who is said to be Converted Matua to destroy Finally the legacy and history of  Anti Brahamin Aboriginal Indigenous Movement and Insurrections!

India is reviewing the lists of Sikhs abroad who were blacklisted for their anti-Indian activities, Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said Sunday. Assuaging the Sikhs in Canada that his government was doing everything possible to heal the wounds of the 1984 riots, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Monday urged the community to put the past behind and move forward.


Visiting Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Monday visited the memorial dedicated to the victims of the 1985 Air India plane explosion in Toronto.


Expressing his views after meeting some relatives of the victims, Dr. Singh said: "Entire Indian nation shares your sense of loss and grief."


While, a relative of a victim said: "Your presence is like a soothing balm and is providing us a heeling touch."


Air India Flight 182, named after Emperor Kanishka and operating on the Montreal-London-Delhi-Bombay route, was blown up on June 23, 1985, by a suitcase bomb at an altitude of 31,000 feet (9,400 m) off Ireland's Atlantic coast.


In all, 329 people died in the disaster, including 280 Canadian nationals, mostly of Indian birth or descent, and 22 Indians.


The incident represents the largest mass murder in modern Canadian history.


Investigation and prosecution took almost 20 years and was the most expensive trial in Canadian history, costing nearly 130 million dollars.

Earlier, on the sidelines of his meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper at Toronto, Dr. Singh had said that the victims of the air crash deserved full justice.

Manmohan Singh apologizes 'on behalf of government" for 1984 anti-Sikh disturbances

Monday, June 28, 2010 10:43:11 PM by ANI
Toronto, June 28 (ANI): Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Monday apologized 'on behalf of the Government of India' for the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, saying that it should have never happened.

Addressing a function organized by Punjabi Canadian lawmakers in Toronto, Dr. Singh said: "I promise you that after going back home I will set up some mechanism to deliberate on all these issues that have been raised here or that have been raised elsewhere in the Indo-Canadian communities."

"With regard to the events of 1984, these are horrible crimes. They should have never happened. I have on behalf of the Government of India apologized on behalf of the nation for what had happened in 1984," he added.

The Prime Minister further said that there are "visible weakness" in the country's judicial system

"There are concerns that those who perpetrated these crimes must be brought to book, there are visible weakness in Indian judicial system, just as weakness in the Canadian legal system. We are trying to address those issues," Dr. Singh said.

"One cannot offer any compensation to those who have lost there near and dear one in these tragic circumstances, but our government in the first UPA opened up all cases of so-called compensation," he added.

He also said that the government is looking for more options to provide relief to the victims and their relatives.

"I don't see there can be adequate compensation at all, but we have opened up what more can be done to provide relief to the victims and their relatives, so that they can once again lead a life of dignity and self respect," Dr. Singh said.

"Communities and nation, it is futile on my part to say to forget past. The past is there, we cannot get away our past, but the challenge is how to move ahead in the world, which is increasingly globalised, which is increasingly becoming an integrated one world," he added.

The 1984 anti-Sikh riots refers to four days of violence in north India following the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her guards, who were Sikhs.

Indira Gandhi's assasination was seen as a consequence of Operation Blue Star of June 1984 when Central forces attacked the Golden Temple in Armitsar to flush out Sant Bhindranwale and Khalistani forces who had entrenched themselves in some areas of the Akal Takht in the Golden Temple complex. .

According to unconfirmed figures, 3000 Sikhs were killed during the disturbances and 50,000 were forced to flee their homes. (ANI)



Post Ambedkarite Sub Altern movement is Co Opted by the Manusmriti Hegemony thanks to these Icons IMMERSED in ABSOLUTE Power sharing and electoral Casteology of Powerful Castes and Communities to have share in Power which sustains the Manusmriti Hegemony under zionist Dynasty and in fact, strengthens the Global Brahaminical Hindutva. For Example, in Bengal the anti Brahaminical Matua Movement has converted itself in an associate Constituent of Trinamul Congress headed by the Brahamin kanya Ms Mamata Banerjee. The Indigenous aboriginal Communities, specifically SC and OBC do suffer from Dementia and are vertically divided in between supporters of CPIM and TMC on the line of ARGENTINA versus Brazil as the FIFA world Cup has turned to be  a Dress Rehersal of Assembly elections most IMMINENT.


Our dear Friend Rajshekhar VT, the editor of Dalit Voice is one of the most vocal supporter of Suicidal Social Engineering practiced by the Dalit Queen Mayawati who in turn kills the Ambedkar Ideology as well as Movement. At the same times, the factions and personalities of Republican party and BAMCEF do commit the same CRIME without addressing the Global Phenomenon and forgetting Dr BR Ambedkar, the Economist and Crusader of Trade Union Rights. Post Ambedkarite Movement allowed the Maoist Menace and RSS Rooted Hindutva and foreign Funded NGOs to take over the Aboriginal Tribal Landscape! Post Ambedkarites Miserably failed to resist Economic Ethnic Cleansing and Exclusion and the Misinformation, Mind Control, Demonisation, hate campaigns, Monopolistic aggression, India Incs Governance, Anti People Legislation, Draconian Military Rule on the name of Internal security. It failed to awaken, educate and organise the EXCLUDED Communities. Ironically, Foreign Funded SC, ST, OBC and Minority Intellectuals have indulged themselves to Divert the Ambedkarite Movement supporting and Pushing for Economic Reforms and Total Disaster!


The SIKH Dementia and AKALI Movement reflects the aboriginal indigenous lack of Self Assertion which is quite an ILLUSION as it has shaped in Scientific Hinduisation of all EXCLUDED Communities and the Zionist Brahamin Ruler Class have got the Open game to deprive every NON Brahamin caste and Communities!


Interacting with the media after the G-20 summit here, she said: 'The matter is under consideration of the government. We are aware of the issues raised by some people.'


'The ministry of external affairs has taken up the issue with the ministry of home affairs and the whole case is under review.'


Rao added that the government has also begun a series of meetings 'to look at the whole issue in depth'.


'I am hopeful that we will have an outcome before long to meet some of the issues raised by these people.'


Canada has the largest number of hardliners who were blacklisted by New Delhi for their anti-Indian activities. Most of these people had taken asylum in Canada besides other western countries during the peak of militancy in Punjab in the 1980s.


In a meeting with Indo-Canadian parliamentarians before paying his respects to the victims of the Kanishka bombing at the Air India Memorial here, Manmohan Singh said the riots were a horrible tragedy which should not have happened. The riots had followed the assassination of prime minister Indira Gandhi Oct 31, 1984 by her Sikh bodyguards,

The prime minister said he apologised for the tragedy in 2005 and his government also opened the issue of compensation to the victims. But the Indian judicial system has the same problems as the Canadian system, he said, hinting at the delay in justice and acquittal of the accused in the riots.

He said though it is difficult to forget a tragedy, the community should not dwell too much on the past and play its larger role in India.

However, he regretted that some groups were trying to keep the issue alive to further their separatist agenda.

The prime minister's remarks came in the meeting which also included Indo-Canadian MP Sukh Dhaliwal, who recently introduced a motion in the Canadian parliament to declare the 1984 riots a 'genocide'.

Urging the Indian prime minister to address the issue of the 1984 riots, former Canadian health minister Ujjal Dosanj warned that many groups were using the issue to further their Khalistani agenda. 'Justice for the riots victims is far from their mind,' Dosanjh said.

Hailing the Indian government's move to give voting rights to non-resident Indians India, Dosanjh however, cautioned Singh against opening booths in Canada as this would further divide the Indian community.

Canadian Parliamentary Secretary Deepak Obhrai, who is currently the highest ranking Indo-Canadian in the government, told Manmohan Singh that the Canadian prime minister was committed to working with India to marginalise separatist elements.

'These groups are of no consequence in the Indo-Canadian community,' Obhrai assured Manmohan Singh.

Ontario province minister Harinder Takhar, who as chair of Canadian Parliamentarians of Indian Origin took the initiative to organise the meeting with Manmohan Singh, termed it 'historic and very positive for India and Canada.'

Before leaving for India, the prime minister also paid his respects to the Kanishka victims at the Air India Memorial here. He was accompanied by Canadian Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to the memorial.




Mayawati has killed her idol Ambedkar


Mayawati Rejected Reservation to Resettled Refugees in UP and NOW, Joins the Brahaminical Deportation Brigade!The Telegraph report clarifies Mayawati`s stance which is on the line of Nationwide DEPORT Partition victim SC OBC Refugees launched by ADWANI, BUDDHA and PRANAB Mukherjee. Meanwhile, Citizenship Amendment Act has been Passed by NDA with ALL Party Support without any VIRTUAL Debate allowing Dual CITIZENSHIP to those who have NEVER been connected to India as we belonged to UNITED Undivided India and Systematically made Partition Victims to readjust DEMOGRAPHY across the border to sustainBrahaminical Zionist Hegemony! Dr Manmohan Singh as a Rjaya Sabha Member was only person along with General Shankar Roychowdhari who demanded Citizenship for all Bengali Refugees! But he became the Next Prime Minister and Modified the Act. Not only this, DrManmohan Singh constituted UNIQUE Identity Authority headed by Nandan Nilekani with Cabinet Minister rank to deprive of CITIZENSHIP to Aboriginal Tribes, Refugees, slum dwellers and underclasses. The Project is formatted to eject out SEVEN Hundred Indian Aboriginal Indigenous People out of Home!Our friends are engaged in the Debate ofOBC Headcount which is denied since 1947 and has been assured to DIVERT us as Majority Masses are set to be OMITTED systematically from National Population Register and I had been writing and speaking constantly on this lethal ALCHEMIST Formula equating with Citizenship amendment Act, UNIQUE Identity and finally Market research oriented CENSUS!

The BRAHAMINICAL Hegemony consisting of all Political parties and Ideologies do bank on EXCLUSION and demographic Adjustment Readjustment to ENSURE that only the MICRO Minority THREE PercentBRAHMINS should RULE! The Caste System has Ensured this. Annihilation of caste was the Agenda of Dr Ambedkar and Dr Ram Manohar Lohia did seem to support the Idea. It is important because all OBC leaders opted for Socialism coined by Lohia. BUT the Zionist Brahmins have CONSOLIDATED the CASTE dividing us Further and killing Indian Republic and its democratic Constitution. Governance, Administration, Intelligentsia, Media, Policy making,NGOs, Social and environmental Activism- everything HANDLED by the Brahamins and we do play only TOOLS to be used and Co Opted!

Thus, I am AFRAID to say that MAYAWATI is ALLOWED to continue as UP Chief Minister just to KILL AMBEDKARITE Ideology and Movement. Kanshiram`s Bamcef divided in Various Groups may prove the Diversion of Post Ambedkar Post Kanshiram Movement limited in Power sharing based on caste Identity Only. I have also writing that we may not address the Global Phenomenon of ECONOMIC Ethnic Cleansing and systematic ethnic Cleansing. It is the same process replicated in Bengal where all ANTI Land Reform, Anti Marxist, Anti communist national and international forces rallied behindMamata Banerjee to CONTINUE COMPLETE BRAHMIN Rule in Bengal!

I had NO Choice to write this as Mayawati Joins the ANTI Aboriginal Anti Indigenous Brigade of RSS, UPA, NDA and Marxists to deport SC and OBC and Minority Communities!
http://content.msn.co.in/MSNContribute/Story.aspx?PageID=cece6517-8a63-4987-a213-5635b1106791

Sikh MP's motion on 1984 riots divides Indo-Canadians

Thursday, June 10, 2010 2:03:10 PM by IANS
y Gurmukh Singh
Toronto, June 10 (IANS) Two Canadian MPs, including Punjab-born Sukh Dhaliwal, gave a notice to table a petition in the nation's parliament Wednesday asking the Canadian government to recognize the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in India as an act of genocide.

But because of urgent government matters, the petition could be not tabled Wednesday.

Andrew Kania, who represents the Punjabi-dominant Brampton West constituency on the outskirts of Toronto, has joined Dhaliwal in moving the petition in the House. Dhaliwal, who moved to Canada in 1984, represents another Sikh-dominant constituency of Newton-North Delta on the outskirts of Vancouver.

Both the MPs, who belong to the opposition Liberal Party, say the petition has been signed by 10,000 people even as their party boss Michael Ignatieff has condemned the move.

Four other MPs, including Indo-Canadian Navdeep Bains and Gurbax Malhi, are also reportedly supporting the petition.

"The failure of successive Indian governments to bring to justice those responsible for mass revenge attacks on Sikhs after the assassination of prime minister Indira Gandhi 25 years ago is a severe blot on India's legal system and democracy," the Globe and Mail newspaper quoted Bains as saying.

The petition drew angry reaction from many quarters.

"What happened to innocent Sikhs in 1984 was tragic event for which no guilty should be spared and we have been told that the Indian government is taking steps. But the petition is a mischievous and divisive step by these individuals who want to harm the Indo-Canadian community. The petition is only to promote their own agenda," said Indo-Canadian leader and parliamentary secretary Deepak Obhrai.

"The Indian prime minister, who is the most respected Sikh in the world has made statements on this and the Indian government is addressing the issue. But these guys want to use Canada to divide India," he said.

The Canada India Foundation (CIF), which is an advocacy group for better India-Canada relations, also condemned the petition as "calculated to inflame anti-India sentiments among the Sikh community."

Calling it "yet another measure by an extremist fringe element to foment division with and within the Sikh community in Canada," CIF spokesperson Manoj Pundit said, "The presentation of the petition in Parliament is ill-advised and ill-intentioned since there is no justification for Canada to take the position that the petition demands.

"We would surmise that the petition is deliberately timed to coincide with the upcoming arrival of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Canada for the G8/ G20 summit."

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at gurmukh.s@ians.in)

Canadian parliament admits motion to call 1984 riots 'genocide'

Saturday, June 12, 2010 8:27:21 AM by IANS
By Gurmukh Singh
Toronto, June 12 (IANS) A motion by an Indo-Canadian MP asking the Canadian government declare the 1984 anti-Sikh riots as 'genocide' was tabled in the country's parliament late Thursday.

Sukh Dhaliwal, MP for Newton-North Delta on the suburbs of Vancouver, was joined by Andrew Kania, MP from the Punjabi-dominant constituency of Brampton West on the outskirts of Toronto, in presenting the motion.

"On behalf of Canadians, I am here presenting a petition on the tragic events of 1984 in India," said Dhaliwal, adding that "many Canadians across the country are marking this solemn occasion."

Reading the motion, reportedly signed by 10,000 people, Dhaliwal said, "The petitioners call on the government of Canada to recognize that an organized campaign of violence, rape and killings took place in India in November of 1984 against the Sikh community, resulting in the deaths of thousands."

He said the Canadian government should "call upon the government of India to take measures to bring all persons responsible for the organized campaign of violence to justice. This includes criminal proceedings against the responsible persons following the due process of law."

Concluding the motion, he said, "Finally, (Canada should) recognize that this organized killing resulting in deaths of thousands is genocide as per UN convention on the prevention and punishment of the kind of genocide."

Both the MPs who moved the motion belong to the main opposition Liberal Party whose leader Michael Ignatieff has distanced himself from the motion.

Critics have described the motion as an attempt to embarrass Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who is coming here for the G-20 summit later this month.

But Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, legal advisor of Sikhs for Justice, a New York-based human rights advocacy group which is backing the motion, said "leaders of the Sikh community have sent a written request to meet with Prime Minister Singh to dismiss the notion that the Canadian Sikh community supports any kind of militancy or separatist movement."

He said, "The Sikh community holds India as their ancestral motherland and wish India to thrive economically.

"All they want from India is to act on its responsibility with regard to imparting justice to the victims of Sikh genocide. This will restore and enhance India's reputation in the world and will make the Indian diaspora proud."

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at gurmukh.s@ians.in)


Apologise to Sikhs for Komagata Maru tragedy: Canadian petition

Wednesday, April 14, 2010 10:21:34 AM by IANS

By Gurmukh Singh
Toronto, April 14 (IANS) A petition was introduced in the Canadian parliament Tuesday seeking a formal apology from the government for the Komagata Maru tragedy of 1914 in which 376 Indians were not allowed to enter the country and sent back.

The Komagata Maru was a Japanese ship hired by a Malaysia-based wealthy Sikh Gurdit Singh to bring 376 people, mostly Sikhs, to Vancouver from India via Hong Kong in 1914 to challenge racist laws of that time. But the Indians were not allowed to disembark in Vancouver port for two months and then forcibly sent back to India where many were shot dead by police on arrival in Kolkata.

Though Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper apologized for it at a Punjabi mela in Vancouver in 2008, some sections of the Indo-Canadian community and opposition parties have been demanding a formal apology in the country's parliament.

Moving the petition in the House of Commons, Jack Layton, leader of the opposition New Democratic Party, said, "The Conservatives (the ruling party) have proven they have a heart when it comes to saying sorry to communities such as the First Nations (native people) and Aboriginals over the residential school abuse and the Chinese head tax - now it's time to apologize to the Sikh, Hindu and Muslim communities who suffered from the Komagata Maru.

"Today is Vaisakhi - the Sikhs' New Year, celebrated all around the world. It's in this spirit of celebration that I presented a petition signed by more than 4,600 Canadians, demanding this government apologize for the mistreatment and denial of basic necessities and legal rights on May 23, 1914, to Indians who were on board the Komagata Maru."

Thanking a Vancouver-based organization and individuals for collecting signatures, the opposition leader said, "This petition was a Canada-wide, community effort, but particular thanks goes to the Prof. Mohan Singh Memorial Foundation of Canada, and to Sahib Thind and Jasbir Sandhu."

He said the government should use the auspicious Vaiaskhi day to recognize an historical wrong. "What better gift to give the community on Vaisakhi than the apology and acknowledgement that they deserve. The Komagata Maru has been an unhealed scar in the Sikh community and in our history," said the leader of the opposition party which had also moved a motion nine years ago to get the five Sikh religious symbols recognized by the Canadian parliament.

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at gurmukh.s@ians.in)



Recent Sikh history: An inside story (IANS Book Review)


2010-06-17 10:30:00

: '1984: Lessons From History', Author: Harminder Kaur; Publisher: Corporate Vision, Price: Rs.595; Pages: 245

India witnessed a spate of inter-linked tragic events in the year 1984 - Operation Bluestar and the assassination of prime minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh body guards, followed by anti-Sikh riots in capital Delhi and several other parts of the country that shook the conscience and secular fabric of the country.

This book examines the events that took place in 1984 in the larger context of centre-Sikh relations during the 20th century and especially in the post-independence era. It brings out the inside story of intrigue and conflict in centre-Sikh relations and the conflicts between the two that started before the independence of India culminating in the tragedies of 1984.

The author, a senior journalist who has covered Punjab extensively from 1978 onwards, produces a series of documents - including the Rajiv Gandhi-Longowal record, the Akali Dal's memorandum to the Sarkaria Commission related to centre-state relations, a Parliamentary Committee's report on the demand for a separate Punjabi province in 1965 and the Punjab Boundary Commission report 1966 - to support her argument that these tragic events were largely a result of confrontationist politics propagated by the Congress as well as the Akalis for their own petty political gains.

Kaur depicts through extensive research of official documents and a series of interviews with various Akali and Congress leaders that while the Congress leadership at the centre prior to 1984 was concerned about vote bank politics, the Akalis displayed poor leadership qualities too.

She has tried to answer the question raised in this work itself, 'Who was responsible for the political atmosphere that made the fundamentalism of (Jarnail Singh) Bhindranwale relevant?'

'We cannot overlook the fact that he (Bhindranwale) was used and abused by the political forces of the day. Both the Congress as well as the Akali Dal used him for their own benefit...Since both tolerated him for their individual benefits he fed on his self-importance,' she says.

That is why even after Operation Bluestar at the Golden Temple in Amritsar in which Sikh militant leader Bhindranwale was killed, terrorism in Punjab became an even bigger problem.

Taking a look at the political events during the last 15 years, the book says the emergence of coalition politics at the centre has provided an opportunity to the Sikhs to put past grievances behind and move ahead.

However, there is a word of caution, '...political, territorial and economic problems (of Punjab) still await a political resolution'.

The interviews of then president Giani Zail Singh immediately after Operation Bluestar, Sant Longowal and other Akali stalwarts as well as many senior Congress leaders done by the author provide more than a glimpse of various shades of the realpolitik during the 1980s and early 1990s when the Indian state was grappling with the gravest threat to its integrity in Punjab since independence.

The book has several rare photographs, including the one in which Sant Longowal and Bhindranwale are shown engrossed in a discussion. Later both became adversaries and Longowal was assassinated by Sikh militants in 1985, a month after he had signed a historic agreement, the Punjab Accord, with then prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.

(Arun Anand can be contacted at arun.anand@ians.in)

http://sify.com/news/recent-sikh-history-an-inside-story-ians-book-review-news-national-kgrk4bifiab.html

Keep away from Sikh religious matters, Badal tells Congress


2010-06-24 17:50:00



, June 24 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal Thursday asked the Congress party not to interfere in the religious matters of the Sikhs with an eye to the forthcoming Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) general elections.

Addressing a public rally in this town in Patiala district, 110 km from Chandigarh, Badal said the Congress was trying to wrest control of the SGPC, the mini-parliament of Sikhs, through its 'B' team comprising of Delhi State Gurdwara Management Committee president (DSGMC) Paramjit Singh Sarna and Akali Dal-Amritsar president Simaranjit Singh Mann.

'It is not surprising but ironical that the Congress, which claims to be a secular party, is deliberately encroaching upon the jurisdiction of Sikh religious matters by indirectly lending support to Sarna and others in the SGPC elections,' he said.

Badal said the Congress party could not befool the people of Punjab, especially Sikhs, as successive Congress governments at the centre and in the state had betrayed the people of Punjab.

He charged the Congress government in neighbouring Haryana with trying to interfere in SGPC affairs by allowing the setting up of a separate SGPC for that state.

The Amritsar-headquartered SGPC controls most gurdwaras (Sikh temples) in Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, including the holiest of Sikh shrines 'Harmandar Sahib' (popularly called Golden Temple) in Amritsar.

DSGMC chief Sarna Wednesday claimed that the Akali Dal was resorting to malpractices in enrolling of new voters for forthcoming SGPC polls.

The central government has not yet announced the elections to the SGPC. These are likely to be held early next year.

Post Kharilanji upsurge gives strength to
Ambedkarite Political Forces

RPI + BSP win 56 councilors; Congress loose 43 and Sena-BJP 101

Khairlanji Agitation pays Some result Socio-Politically

In the last issue (1 January 2007) we have tried to analyse the conspiracy behind Khairlangi event. The game plan of brahminical and status quoist forces (the Hindudtvavadi + Communist and Political Statusquoist) was explained in BVB. The shortcomings of the focus of agitations by the Ambedkarite masses, raising the central demand of CBI inquiry instead of "Seperate Settlements" was also explained. It was also hinted that a grand alliance of the Ambedkarite Political forces or a tactical voting by the Ambedkarite masses can bring good results and teach a lesson to the Counter revolutionary
(Brahminical forces for Brahmanism), Congress, BJP, Sena & status quoist NCP parties.

Forced Alliance of RPI factions and tactical voting by the masses paid good results.
The most irresponsible behavior of RPI leaders in the past years was best owed upon by some wisdom by the strong sentiments of unity in the Ambedkarite Community. The Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Dhamma Deeksha in 2006 also created a good 'emotional bonding' amongst the Buddhists and other aspiring communities ready for conversion.

This socio-cultural awakening however required a practical platform for political conversion into votes. The Ambedkarite masses forced the leaders of RPI to form an alliance. The second line leaders of RPI also took the initiative and an understanding amongst the RPI faction to form an alliance materialised at Nagpur Municipal Corporation.
Nagpur and Akola lession : Learn to be independent and become a balancing force unitedly.

At Nagpur the RPI alliance won 8 councillors, with 2 by a faction of RPI named BRYM. In all the tally goes to 10 councillors. They both secured in all 56,451 votes out of 7,78,382 votes secured. BSP by garnering 51,131 secured 4 seats. So in all RPI + BRYM + BSP secured 14 seats and 1,07,582 votes. The Congress polled 1,78,806 votes (-5.59%) and 34 seats (-17), NCP 86,282 votes (-1.83%) and 8 seats (-3). BJP polled 1,97,864 (-3.33%) and 55 seats (+2). The independents were spoilers by securing 1,57,374 (+11.08%) votes and winning 11 seas (+6).

At Akola BBMS lead by Adv. Prakash Ambedkar won 10 seats, 6 more than last elections. It fought independently on its own strength and ensured success.
An alliance between RPI and BSP could have secured 9 seats more, would have brought down BJP to 50 seats and captured NMC.

The statistical analysis of combined votes of RPI + BRYM + BSP shows that if they would have formed a grand alliance amongst themselves they could have easily won 9 seats more and become the balancing force in Nagpur Muncipal Corporation with 23 seats. The aggregate total of their votes is much more than the winning candidate in 9 seats of the corporation. They should learn a lession from the NMC elections and work out the possibility of a future alliance based on Ambekarite principles and programme for Assembly polls 2009. They require a 'Political Widsom' in the interest of the movement of Bahujan Samaj.
RPI (all factions) won 39 seats. BSP 17 and ensured a combined loss of 43 seats to Congress and 101 seats to Shivsena and BJP; other factors being neutral as always.

The 10 corporation elections in Feb. 2007 of Maharashtra; Nagpur, Amravati, Akola, Nashik, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad, Solapur, Ulhasnagar, Thane, Mumbai the RPI factions won 39 seats in all (out of which 10 in Akola & 10 in Nagpur) with BSP winning 17 seats in all. They both put together won 56 seats. The Congress lost 43 seats (17 alone in Nagpur) and S.S. + BJP lost 101 seats all over the state. Though their was a lot of infighting in Congress as usual, the fight of political one up manship between NCP & Congress and the spoiling factor of Raj Thakery's newly formed party for Shiv Sena. One factor which has ensured a grand success of the Ambedkarite Political Forces is the 'feeling of ones' amongst the Ambedkarite masses and a strong anti-Congress, NCP feeling after the Khairlanji event. Though it cannot be said as a constructive consolidation of a community from the perspective of the movement, that is a reality. Those who aspire to make movement a success will have to 'shape' this reality of the Ambedkarite masses for right action of Bahujan Samaj. Who has to do it?

Another lesson from Assembly Elections of
Punjab & Uttranchal (March 2007)  to be learnt by the Ambedkarite Politics is, it cannot win politically without building up an overall movement socially-culturally-Ideologically-organizationally. BJP could won these two states due to its social coalition with intermediate castes in Punjab and Uttranchal. The RSS has become active after Rajnath Singh accepting the Hindutva Agenda. BJP and RSS have a mission and commitment to fulfil it, we  cannot win without a mission of Babasaheb and an absolute commitment to it. Uttar Pradesh is in waiting....

- Vijay Mankar

http://www.bahujanvision.com/eweb/articals/a11.htm

Launch movement to fulfill martyrs dream, Dal Khalsa to Akal Takht jathedar

Punjab Newsline Network

Monday, 07 June 2010

AMRITSAR: Endorsing the call given by Akal Takht jathedar on the occasion of Blue star anniversary that
the community should strive to fulfill the dream of martyrs, the Dal Khalsa said a separate
Sikh state was the cherished goal of all those who laid down their lives during army attack in 1984.

In his communique addressed to the Akal Takht head Gaini Gurbachan Singh, party's senior most leader Satnam Singh reiterated that his party would strive to achieve that goal. "It's our earnest desire that Akal Takht should formulate strategy and chalk out the programme for the achievement of the goal". Assuring his party's wholehearted support for the cause, he urged the jathedar to translate his words into deeds.  

He said the silence of Akali leadership about memorial to 1984 martyrs even after 26 years of the deadly attack was disgusting and disappointing.

Agreeing with Akal Takht jathedar's standpoint that there should not be any politics on the issue of memorial, he asked the jathedar to name those who have been politicizing the issue. Pinpointing his finger towards SAD leaders who have been controlling the reins of the SGPC, he said "to woo Sikh voters during last assembly elections, SGPC passed resolution to this effect. However, after 8 years they have not moved an inch on the issue".  

Taking exception on the viewpoint of the Jathedar that martyrs were remembered by their deeds and not memorials, he said constructing memorials of those who died for religion have been Sikh tradition and memorials in memory of Shaheed Baba Deep Singh and Bhai Gurbakash Singh within Darbar Sahib complex was testimony to that.

It is pertinent to mention that for 72 hours the Dal Khalsa activists and kin of those killed in Bluestar, staged a protest against the failure of the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) to raise a memorial of the martyrs. He said, meeting of all panthic bodies would be convened shortly to decide the further course of action.

 
http://www.punjabnewsline.com/content/launch-movement-fulfill-martyrs-dream-dal-khalsa-akal-takht-jathedar/21013

India, Canada agree to boost trade to $15 bn a year by 2015

Business Standard - ‎8 hours ago‎
India and Canada have agreed to achieve an annual bilateral trade target of $15 billion by 2015 to encourage two-way flow of investments. Prime Ministers Manmohan Singh and Stephen Harper welcomed the submission of the report of the Joint Study Group ...

PM seeks US cooperation in tackling poverty, disease

Business Standard - ‎6 hours ago‎
Visiting Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said that New Delhi is engaged in getting rid of chronic poverty, ignorance and disease, which still afflict millions of people and it looks forward to the US support in this regard. ...

PM asks Canada to curb Sikh militancy from its soil

Press Trust of India - Bal Krishna - ‎Jun 26, 2010‎
Toronto, June 26 (PTI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said there are some elements "wedded to terrorism" outside India, including in Canada, who try to keep the issue of Sikh militancy alive and asked Ottawa to curb such anti-India activities from ...


"I look forward to have the privilege of welcoming you and your family to our country so that you can see for yourself what we are trying to do, the difficulties of managing social and economic transformation in the framework of a democracy committed to the rule of law, committed to all fundamental human freedoms. I think that's what India seeks to achieve, and in this we seek your active involvement and active participation," Singh added.
more by Manmohan Singh - 6 hours ago - Business Standard (6 occurrences)


India-Canada nuke deal expected ?

indiablooms - ‎Jun 27, 2010‎
Toronto, June 27 (IBNS) India and Canada are expected to ink a civil nuclear deal during the ongoing visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here for the G-20 Summit. The deal might be signed on Sunday when Singh meets Canadian Prime Minister Stephen ...

Britain, France support India's UNSC Bid

BreakingNewsOnline. - ‎Jun 27, 2010‎
Toronto: In a significant development, Britain and France have assured India their support in its bid for a permanent membership of the UN Security Council (UNSC). The assurance came when Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh held separate talks ...

Don't allow anti-India activities: PM to Canada

Press Trust of India - ‎9 hours ago‎
Toronto, Jun 28 (PTI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today made it clear to Canada and the Sikh community that the Canadian soil should not be allowed to be used for promoting extremism against India and hoped the government here was "alive to what is ...

India, Canada to sign historic nuclear agreement this week

BusinessGhana - ‎Jun 25, 2010‎
its energy needs during Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit in Toronto for the upcoming G-20 Summit. Canada will become the latest country with which India shall have civil nuclear deal since the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) allowed New Delhi ...

Pranab Mukherjee asks state governments and banks to improve credit flow

2010-06-28 20:00:00
 

Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Monday asked State Governments and bankers to position themselves to finance the emerging demand for credit from agriculture, manufacturing and services sectors in their respective regions.

"I would urge the State Governments and Bankers to position themselves to finance the emerging demand for credit from all sectors in this region, whether from agriculture, manufacturing or services," Mukherjee said.

Addressing the Joint Meeting of the Chief Ministers of Central and West Zone States and CEOs /CMDs of public sector banks and Financial Institutions, Mukherjee asked them to make serious efforts to improve the credit flow to housing, weaker sections, minority communities and education loans.

"Though efforts are being made to improve the credit flow to housing, weaker sections, minority community and education loans, the credit growth in these sectors need closer monitoring in the State Level Bankers Committees," he said.

In his address, Mukherjee suggested to closely monitor them through state level bankers committees.

"The Financial Inclusion Plans for coverage of all habitations with banking facilities must be closely monitored by the State Chief Ministers and CEOs of all Public Sector Banks," he said.

Mukherjee said there is a need to ensure that financial literacy and financial inclusion is integrated with the technological development of banking infrastructure in rural and semi -urban areas.

"There is also need to ensure that financial literacy and financial inclusion is integrated with the technological development of banking infrastructure in rural and semi-urban areas," Mukherjee said.

He advised banks to convert savings from semi-urban and rural markets into financial assets through effective financial inclusion.

"I take this opportunity to advise the Banks to convert savings from semi-urban and rural markets into financial assets through effective financial inclusion," Mukherjee said.

"With the improvement in banking technology, financial inclusion initiatives will strengthen financial deepening," he added.

He also expressed concern over the financial sector not addressing needs of the poor, the marginalized, the small farmer, and the micro entrepreneur.

"There is urgent need for including people from all strata in the mainstream banking system and for putting our country firmly on the path of overall growth and development," Mukherjee said.

Mukherjee also stressed on effective implementation of Aam Admi Bima Yojna and Co-contributory Pension Scheme 'Swavalamban' as these are important priorities before the government.

He appreciate Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) efforts at financial inclusion and enhancing financial literacy. (ANI)


PM pays homage at Kanishka victims' memorial in Toronto

Visiting Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Monday visited the memorial dedicated to the victims of the 1985 Air India plane explosion in Toronto.

Air India Flight 182, named after Emperor Kanishka and operating on the Montreal-London-Delhi-Bombay route, was blown up on June 23, 1985, by a suitcase bomb at an altitude of 31,000 feet (9,400 m) off Ireland's Atlantic coast.

In all, 329 people died in the disaster, including 280 Canadian nationals, mostly of Indian birth or descent, and 22 Indians.

The incident represents the largest mass murder in modern Canadian history.

Investigation and prosecution took almost 20 years and was the most expensive trial in Canadian history, costing nearly 130 million dollars.

Earlier, on the sidelines of his meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper at Toronto, Dr. Singh had said that the victims of the air crash deserved full justice.

"My visit to Canada coincides with the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Kanishka air crash. This terrible disaster and the suffering it has led to will forever remain a stark reminder of the need for all of us to work unitedly to eliminate this scourge of terrorism," Dr. Singh said.

"The victims of this ghastly tragedy deserve full justice," he added.

He further said that the terrible disaster and the suffering that it caused to kith and kin, would "remain a stark reminder of the need for all of us to work unitedly to eliminate the scourge of terrorism".

Earlier, on June 23, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper had issued an unqualified apology to the relatives of the victims.

The powerful and emotional apology was issued on the 25th anniversary of the tragedy.

"I will make no attempt to make any sense of it. This was evil, perpetrated by cowards, despicable, senseless and vicious," Harper said.

What Harper did was give a long-awaited government acknowledgement that the bombing was a preventable, wholly Canadian crime, badly mishandled by federal intelligence and police agencies.

The tragedy was made worse, the Prime Minister said, when "the families were for years after treated with scant respect or consideration" by Canadian authorities.

"I stand before you, therefore, to offer on behalf of the Government of Canada, and all Canadians, an apology," he added. By Ashok Dixit (ANI)

Separatists up their ante, call for sit-in protests; Mirwaiz too calls for protests

Peerzada Ashiq, Hindustan Times
Srinagar, June 28, 2010

Separatists in Kashmir on Monday threatened to up their ante against the state government and asked people to come on roads and mosques to register their protests against the killing of eight teenagers in the last fortnight.

"Now that the state government has admitted it has no control over security forces killing unarmed civilians, people are asked to fill the streets and protests peacefully on June 28 and June 29," All Parties Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said.

He appealed to people to assemble at colonies central places and raise pro-freedom slogans.

"The aim to attract the attention of international community towards state terrorism and unending violence against new generation in Kashmir," said the Mirwaiz, who was placed under house arrest on Monday.

The separatists, both moderate and hard-line led by Sayeed Ali Shah Geelani, have issued a calendar of protests, which includes two-day strike and marches towards city's historical places like Pather Masjid.

Heeding to Hurriyat calls, many mosques in the city in the Monday evening asked people to come out on roads to protests the killings. Pro-freedom songs were played at ruling National Conference bastion Shah Hamdan shrine at Zaina Kadal. There were reports of sit-in from several localities in Srinagar.

Sopore, where four youth were killed in the last four days, also witnessed late night protest sit-ins.

The Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, led by Yasin Malik, has also asked people to protest against the killings.

Malik was arrested Sunday night from his residence and has been taken to unknown location. Mirwaiz's aide Nayeem Ahmad Khan has also been arrested from Pattan area early Monday and shifted to an unknown destination.

Meanwhile, all exams scheduled for next three days have been cancelled by the authorities.


Anand Teltumbde, Khairllanji. A Strange and Bitter Crop

Nicolas Jaoul
Bibliographical reference

Teltumbde, Anand (2008) Khairllanji. A Strange and Bitter Crop, New Delhi : Navayana, 214 pages, ISBN 9788189059156

Full text

  • 1  On the post-Khairlanji protests, see Jaoul (2008).

1The importance of the Khairlanji events lies partly, but not mainly, in the exceptional degree of cruelty displayed by the village mob when it engaged, in broad daylight, in the murder and collective rape of four members of a Dalit family. After all, events of caste-based violence have occurred regularly in Indian villages since the 1970s, when the dynamics of Dalit emancipation threatened to upset the rural traditional order. Khairlanji's historical importance rather lies in the massive Dalit demonstrations of anger that followed, providing a sharp contrast with mere ritualised visits and moral condemnations by leaders of the opposition whose politically motivated interventions were little concerned by Dalit security. Such an unprecedented Dalit uprising and its ability to catch the media's attention explain that the very name 'Khairlanji' has now become a recognised symbol of extreme caste injustice and violence, a disturbing counter narrative of the 'shining India' myth1.

  • 2  On the failure of this law, see Galanter (1989); also a more recent press report by Frontline: htt(...)

2The Dalit crowds that took to the streets to demand the hanging of the perpetrators did so because the local and state administration had simply sought to conceal and erase the atrocity. The judicial outcome too was unprecedented: among the 38 accused, eight were recognised guilty, amongst whom six have been sentenced to death and two to life imprisonment (however, due to appeal procedures, the final sentences could still change). A special anti-atrocity law exists to punish caste-based crimes against Dalits, but the conviction rates are exceptionally low, testifying to the ability of dominant castes to neutralize judicial procedures, not to mention the problem of underreporting of such crimes by the local authorities.2 Their inability to take advantage of such legal protection is in fact one aspect of the overall dispossession of Dalits when seeking the support of the local administration, as a means to protect their constitutional rights and dignity.

3This book, written by A. Teltumbde, a Dalit intellectual from Maharashtra, is an expression of the will to remember Khairlanji and turn it into a symbol, both of caste oppression and Dalit revolt against it in the 21st century: 'We cannot allow Khairlanji to remain an unfortunate incident, an aberration, a forgotten case in some obscure court. The world needs to know the strange fruit that the tree of caste has borne' (p.10). Although not an academic, the author provides a challenging Dalit critique of the failure of both the Indian state and of its Dalit representatives to prevent caste atrocities. His book will be of special interest to readers interested in the latest developments in the politics of the unprivileged in India. It argues that Dalit politics have reached a critical stage, and questions the legalistic approach that it has adopted until now. Teltumbde in fact constructs Khairlanji as an historical turning point. His criticism of the Ambedkarite movement's inadequacies leads to a series of propositions for the post-Khairlanji Ambedkarite movement that are reminiscent of the Dalit Panther's tentative and short-lived Marxist redefinition of Ambedkarism in the early 1970s.

  • 3  See for instance: Brass (1998); Mendelsohn & Vicziany (1998); Fuller & Bénéï (2000).

4Teltumbde's attempt to expose the reality of caste from below through the scrutiny of an atrocity and its aftermath not only provides first hand material on the massacre and the Dalit reaction that followed, it represents a valuable intellectual essay on 'understanding castes to annihilate them', as the introduction's title proposes. From the academic point of view, the book provides fruitful and pertinent insights into the understanding of caste in the contemporary Indian context. Dismissing Indologist theories on caste, the author expresses his disagreement with the (formerly) established scholarly perspective that took the ideological justification of caste uncritically, giving it the status of the consensual, autochthonic cultural point of view. As critiques of Dumont's theory of caste have also pointed out, such views provided academic authority to Brahminical hierarchy as the essence of Indian sociology. Pointing to the obsolescence of such a scholarly tradition and its uselessness for the anti-caste movement that requires a properly contextualised understanding of caste, Teltumbde seeks to elucidate the economic and political rationale of anti-Dalit violence ('caste atrocities') in the early 21st century. In taking such a critical stand against academic research, the author fails to acknowledge the important work that researchers conducted from the perspective of the lower castes, which clearly departs from the Dumontian theory. The profound renewal of academic research on Indian society, in which the old Indology appears to have been definitively sidelined, has not been taken into account by the author. For instance, many recent studies have documented the lives and struggles of India's ordinary poor people and their relationship to the state3, bringing relevant knowledge to his own objective, i.e. 'to sharpen our understanding of caste dynamics as they exist' (p.20).

5Despite his criticism of the Ambedkarite movement and the Marxist overtones of his analysis, his intellectual effort is well inscribed in the legacy of the great historical leader of Dalit emancipation, whose writings are starting to be acknowledged in the academic world. In this respect, the author dissociates himself from the bulk of Ambedkarite activists, who have simply adopted the great man as the ideal combination of upward mobility and engagement on behalf of the Dalit community and seek to pursue his agenda in an orthodox and rather uncreative manner, notwithstanding Ambedkar's own iconoclasm. Although critical of Ambedkar's religious focus on conversion to Buddhism, that his followers now consider the unquestioned antidote against caste and the religious label of true Amebdkarites, Teltumbde seems more in tune with Ambedkar's insistence on the need to base anti-caste activism on a sharp sociological and historical account of caste, an organic theory of caste annihilation grounded in the Dalit experience of caste oppression.

6As a Dalit intellectual, the author builds his critique from the point of view of an insider, who is entitled to expose of his community's political flaws, thus avoiding the trap of pure victimization. Instead he maintains the militant self-definition of Dalits as emancipated and radical political subjects struggling to democratize Indian society from the margins. Far from the kind of Brahmin bashing with which Ambedkarites sometimes tend to content themselves, the author seeks to include the Ambedkarite movement's faults in his critique of what he calls India's 'political economy of caste'. Hence, much more than just a book on the Khairlanji massacre, Teltumbde's essay takes caste atrocity as a relevant feature for the understanding of contemporary Indian society, focusing especially on caste interferences in the functioning of the Indian state machinery and on the caste bias of the dominant media's public discourse.

7The biased way in which the local and the national mainstream media treated the issue of the massacre, as well as the negative image they gave of the subsequent protests are finely analysed. The figures regarding upper caste domination of the media (90% of the senior journalists and managers in Delhi's print media, according to a quoted survey by the CSDS) do suggest quite a lot about an elitist and urban view on what matters or not, what deserves a headline or will remain unnoticed as just another shady crime story involving 'uneducated villagers' in 'backward India'. The massacre was initially reported in Nagpur's local press as being a popular punishment meted out to an allegedly adulterous mother. The caste angle was concealed and the criminal crowd who indulged in the collective raping, beating and mutilating to death, was portrayed as being driven by a sense of moral outrage, indulging in 'an act of public-spirited 'moral justice'' (p.13), a presentation of the events that is nothing short of a justification.

8The caste and urban bias of the journalists appeared negatively through the absence of reports on the massacre in the national media (despite several attempts by local NGOs to catch their attention by sending reports of their fact finding missions). The bias became more manifest and textual in the reports on the Dalit protests, assimilated as they were to mere public nuisance. Damage to public property was sensationally highlighted and protestors were framed in contrast to 'citizens', victims of traffic perturbations, while the rationale behind the collective anger was reduced to 'political manipulation'.

9Such biased reports provide a clear justification for an alternative account from the Dalit side. Teltumbde's main argument is that far from being 'just the misdeed of some uncultured barbaric monsters', Khairlanji in fact 'illustrates the state of the entire country' (p.25). 'Every village in India is a potential Khairlanji. (...) Khairlanji represents the quintessence of caste in India – that people have to observe their ascriptive statuses; stay put in their place' (p.14). Based on the Dalit experience of caste as violence, the social reality described here is the exact negation of the irenic Gandhian cliché 'much celebrated in textbooks and tourist brochures' (p.13) on Indian village life; instead it is a world where caste violence is multifarious, permanent and inescapable, whether internalised with the acceptance of one's degraded status, or manifest when refusing to forsake one's dignity and rights.

10Reflecting the Dalit standpoint, the author thus argues that violence is an intrinsic aspect of caste, and that such irruptions of caste violence, far from being isolated events, have a more functional, systemic aspect of enforcing the social order, hence its tendency 'to be performed as a public spectacle by collectives in a celebratory mode' (p.185). This is made clear by the collective dimension of rape, where the woman's body becomes the privileged site of collective punishment. 'Rape is not a private affair- in Khairlanji, it becomes a celebratory spectacle. Atrocities involve intricate and devious planning so that they become a 'lesson' for the entire dalit community.' (pp.178-9).

11Displacing our understanding of caste from the mythical Varnashradharma reference to the role that it performs in the Indian market economy and bureaucratic polity (termed the 'political economy' of caste), the author thus makes the polemic statement that 'in recent times, atrocities also owe to the structural imperatives of the neoliberal state that needs to curb public dissent against its intrinsically anti-people policies' (p.115). Such a reassessment of the contemporary functionalities of caste thus invites the readers to depart from the 'classical fourfold varna system', as 'any discussion of caste typically begins with or bases itself' (p.19), so as to consider caste an integral part of Indian reality, especially as far as its interference in the functioning of the state machinery is concerned. Apart from his critique of Brahminical theories of caste, Teltumbde also directly challenges the anti-caste movement's narrow and self-deceiving focus on anti-Brahminism: 'Anticaste activism too has reflected and reinforced the worse stereotypes, identifying foes and friends in obsolete varna terms' (p.15). The author moreover notes that the anti-caste movement's pragmatic reliance on caste categories showed its limitations when, not knowing to which caste the Bhotmange belonged (since it is not a typical Dalit name), the Ambedkarite community initially failed to react to the massacre, thus illustrating 'the bitter truth that caste identity becomes more important than human identity in India, even for Ambedkarite dalits' (p.48).

12The Anti-Brahmin, 'Bahujan' discourse emphasizing the cultural unity of Dalits and Shudras stands particularly discredited in view of the increasingly Shudra origin of caste violence, especially by dominant castes, like in the Khairlanji massacre. However, the author's contention that 'in all these infamous atrocities and mass murders over the last four decades, there was no direct involvement of the Brahminical castes' is questionable, especially if we consider the unprecedented wave of massacres in Bihar by the Bhumihars in the late 1990s. In fact the author's project of studying the 'political economy' of caste violence without reducing it to class violence would require more attention to the uses of Brahminical ideology by rural dominant castes in their attempts to assert their local hegemony and crush any attempt from the Dalits to improve their degraded position in local society.

13Another questionable aspect of Teltumbde's demonstration of a 'political economy of caste violence' is his inclusion of the Chhattisgarh state's response to Maoism, i.e., the creation of the Salwa Judum Tribal militia, which has led to a civil conflict in which Tribals have ended up attacking Tribals, leading to massive population displacement. The author accuses the Chhattisgarh state of voluntarily orchestrating the population displacement to meet the requirement of setting up special economic zones, thus linking the Salwa Judum state-sponsored repression to the fulfilment of the demands of multinational corporations. He however fails to justify the assimilation of the Tribal issue to a caste issue. On what basis does the author justify his 'Dalit-Tribal' category, apart from their conflictual relationship to the state (which is also qualitatively different)? Dalits and Tribals have never mobilised jointly, or produced any common ideology. Dalits, while criticizing the caste system, and claiming non-Brahmin Dravidian origins, have paradoxically avoided any identification with Tribals. Even if it makes sense to study comparatively and simultaneously different kinds of ethnic discrimination, and if discrimination against non-Hindu minorities often have underlying caste dimensions (like in the case of Dalit converts), one should not lose sight of the specificity of caste discrimination, that Ambedkar himself theorised as the problem of graded inequality. Although agreeing that 'discarding caste as an analytical category altogether would be like throwing the baby with the bathwater' (p. 20), the author seems to head in that direction.

14Although he still situates himself in the Ambedkarite tradition of the politically engaged Dalit intelligentsia, his politics moves away from the anti-Brahmin alliance of Dalit and Shudra castes that was the ideological base of Ambedkarite political revival of the 1990s following the Bahujan Samaj Party's (BSP) success, but that events like Khairlanji and the growing class tensions between intermediary agricultural castes and the Dalits have discredited. Teltumbde instead advocates that the alternative to such caste based politics of alliance with other unprivileged groups lies in class unity, which is conceived as the only possible horizon of the anti-caste movement: 'it must be realised that caste cannot be the basis of such unity; only a class approach can achieve it. Indeed the caste situation today has become so complex that the caste idiom is proving increasingly futile, and the earlier one thinks of substituting it the better' (p. 20).

15The denunciation of the Indian state's biased attitude towards Dalits by the Khairlanji protestors offers a valuable account of the contemporary Dalit condition as citizens whose access to state resources and constitutional rights is hampered by caste factors. The problematic relationship of Dalits to the state thus appears as a major dimension of the caste problem that they face, making the state part of the problem rather than the solution. The difficulty for Dalits to register complaints in a police station, that the Khairlanji events dramatically illustrated, highlights the insecurity and alienation of Dalits at the hands of the local state apparatus, as well as the complications created by caste complicities and corruption in gaining access to representatives of the state: 'Bhayyalal remembered that when he had not met the demand for money from PSI (police station in-charge) Bharane on a previous occasion, Bharane had threatened him and said he would not entertain any of his complaints' (p. 42). Indeed, the Khairlanji narrative is woven around shocking examples of a biased attitude of the administration at different levels, like the absence of a forensic expert during the post-mortem examination of the bodies, due to pressure from local political notables, as well as in the second post-mortem conducted by a medical team from New Delhi.

16The Dalit state bourgeoisie, whom Ambedkar conceived as sympathetic representatives of Dalits inside the state institutions, is not spared in this critique. The Khairlanji revolt was not only a response to being let down by the administration and abandoned to the dominant castes' hostility, but also to the failure of Ambedkarite politicians to provide any protection to their constituency. What Khairlanji revealed was precisely the state of powerlessness of the Dalits and the terrible events to which it could lead. The fact-finding committees set up by Dalit organisations in order to enquire on the attitude of the administration discovered moreover that many of the state employees who were involved in the concealment of the crime were themselves Dalits. The fear of total abandonment by the official authorities (as an extreme form of disenfranchisement) that motivated the protests can thus be linked to the failure of the Dalit elite to provide protection to its deprived community from inside the administration. Teltumbde theorizes this popular resentment as the failure of the Ambedkarite project of Dalit representation.

17Ambedkar's own expectations from administrative representation in the shape of public job quotas, which he had himself dismissed at the end of his life as naive when he denounced the lack of moral commitment of Dalit administrators, is thus criticized as the theoretical failure to understand the nature the state, whose character, like all institutions, 'is not the same as the sum total of the characters of individuals manning it' (p. 112). Moreover, there are sociological obstacles to assuming the role of committed representatives, like social mobility that alienates and isolates the representatives from their social background ('From a class point of view, dalit officials no longer remains a allies (sic) of dalits', p. 195). The author argues that the dominated and insecure position in an upper caste dominated professional milieu generates internalised self restrictions to this role model that can even lead to contrary attitudes towards the community: 'sometimes even the dalit incumbents, perhaps on account of their relative lack of security, appear overzealous in trying to show that they are above caste and identity considerations, which actually means toeing the caste-Hindu viewpoint and thereby acting against the interests of their fellow oppressed' (p.112). Even if bold and militant Dalit administrators exist, the author argues that they are nothing more than exemplary, individual exceptions, whose impact on Dalit lives is therefore marginal: 'This is not to say that individuals are totally inconsequential. Individuals– if they are intrinsically capable, courageously people-oriented and in positions of power- can catalyse some change. But such a combination in the case of dalits is a rare occurrence, given the huge systemic inertia and formidable class pressure on them' (p.113).

18Teltumbde, while reflecting on the Khairlanji protestors' feeling of being let down by their own, fails to elaborate an original analysis of the state based on the Dalit experience, instead contenting himself with the Marxist characterization of the Indian state as the product of the post colonial 'compromise between the feudal landlords and the emerging bourgeoisie' (p. 19). He gives an excessively monolithic account of the state, which is not exempt of essentialist overtones, as if the Indian state's nature was fixed once and for all. His critical account of the Dalit officers' failure to act from their administrative positions in Maharashtra could have been contrasted with the Dalit experience in Uttar Pradesh, where Mayawati's regimes not only posted Dalit officers in positions of local authority, but compelled them to work for their community's welfare. Her policy of administrative reshuffle, which was denigrated by the media as non-meritocratic and casteist, actually contributed to improving Dalits' relationship to the state and empowered them by providing them official support in their local struggles. However limited, this change is one of the most important results that the BSP governments have yielded for the Dalits (probably more important than its symbolic politics and Dalit oriented development schemes), which has generated hopes of replicating the formula in other parts of India, even if the BSP has for the moment failed to make any impact outside Uttar Pradesh.

19The emerging possibility of an eventual break away from the Indian state because of a feeling of disappointment and disgust, which seems to be the principal lesson of Khairlanji for Maharashtrian Dalits, is well illustrated in the vibrant account of the state repression of the protests, that the author characterizes as 'not any less grave atrocity than Khairlanji' (p. 111). Although the protestors expressed their anger through peaceful means of collective action, the Maharashtrian state's brutal response in which 'People were badly beaten, their bones broken, ligaments torn' (p. 74) not only targeted protestors but took the shape of a pogrom-like collective vengeance of the police against Dalit localities: 'Most of the victims had actually not participated in the protests; they were targeted simply because they were dalits living in dalit localities…' (p. 74-5). Those arrested randomly were 'charged with all kinds of crimes, and would be spending many anxious years and their frugal earnings on courts to prove their innocence.' (p.77). Adding to the atrocity itself, the brutal repression of the Dalit protests shocked Dalit communities all over India.

  • 4  Patil, Pratap. 'Khairlanji', documentary movie. Vivid Vision Production, 43 minutes.

20The possible convergence between such a hypothetic rupture with the state and the Maoist strategy of 'people's war', is evoked at several points and seems to sketch the book's political horizon. The supposed Maoist (or Naxalite) involvement in the protests was evoked by the Nagpur police, as well as the home state minister, 'as a licence for the police to unleash terror' (p. 111). However, the officials failed to provide any evidence to this claim, and were contradicted by the fact that the organisers of the local protest committees were well known Ambedkarite activists from local organisations. Although it could be politically difficult for the authorities to target the Ambedkarite movement, fully committed to acting in a legal framework, the Naxalite thesis could be put forward due to the fact that the Ambedkarite political leadership lost control over the protests. Generally, intense factionalism has led to individualized deals between local Ambedkarite politicians and mainstream political parties (whose electoral support is rewarded by official positions), political patronage that exerts an indirect form of political control on their Dalit constituency. But in the Khairlanji protests, the Ambedkarite masses came out in unity, responding to the call of newly formed committees that bypassed the political leaders, thus creating an impression of uncontrolled insurgency. The Naxalite angle used by the police was therefore not just an opportunistic and utilitarian claim, as the author suggests, but perhaps also an authentic feeling of an emerging Dalit uprising that could be abusively labelled as 'Naxalite' because of the threat it represented to the local power arrangements. 'Naxalite' is not just 'a demonic label produced by the Indian state to assume full authority to do whatever it pleases with ordinary people daring to dissent in this democratic republic' (p.68), as the author claims, even if it is also that. Not far from Khairlanji, the Gadchiroli Tribal district is one of the Maoist strongholds of central India. In April 2008, at the time of the death of the Maoist leader Arunadha Gandhi, it was revealed that she was staying in Nagpur's main Dalit locality (Indora, the epicentre of the Ambedkarite movement in Nagpur, and the main stronghold in Maharashtra), which is a pointer to the fact that the Naxalites had actually started building links with Dalits. Although this by no means signifies any substantial infiltrations of the Ambedkarite movement by Maoists, it could point to some degree of ideological influence, as is suggested in the 'Khairlanji' documentary film, which circulates in Nagpur on copied CDs, (especially in the last scene when a street singer sings the war cry halla bol).4 Teltumbde's book, which reflects the growing popular distrust of the state, itself testifies to this potential convergence as an outcome of a growing feeling of injustice among Dalits. This becomes more obvious when he makes the provocative statement that if state justice fails to punish severely the Khairlanji accused, then the Naxalite's 'summary justice' could provide the alternative.

21On the whole, the book is a major statement on the contemporary Dalit condition, at a moment when their relationship to Indian democracy has reached a critical point. Breaking away from some major postulates of the Ambedkarite movement, the author's attempt to relocate Ambedkarism in a Marxist framework can be seen as an attempt to salvage the movement in light of its electoral failure, despite having remained a powerful instrument of Dalit assertion and pride, as well as to prepare it for dealing with growing class tensions. Even in Uttar Pradesh, where Dalit electoral politics have achieved the most, the BSP's shift from Dalit identity for the sake of expanding its constituency has shown the limitations of such minority politics for Dalits. Many local Ambedkarite activists are now resentful of Mayawati's attempt to curb their grassroots social movement. This book in fact demonstrates that Ambedkarism's fate among Dalits provides an excellent indicator of their perceived stakes in the Indian state and therefore of its credibility among the largest sections of India's unprivileged citizens.

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Bibliography

Brass, Paul (1998) The Theft of an Idol. Text and Context in the Representation of Collective Violence. Calcutta: Seagull Books.

Fuller, C.J.; Bénéï, Véronique (2000) The Every Day State and Society and Modern India.New Delhi: Social Science Press.

Galanter, Marc (1989) 'Missed opportunities: The use and non-use of law favourable to Untouchables and other specially vulnerable groups', in Law and Society in Modern India. New Delhi: Oxford University Press: 208-34.

Jaoul,Nicolas(2008) 'The "Righteous Anger" of the Powerless.
Investigating Dalit Outrage over Caste Violence', South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal [Online], 2 |. URL : http://samaj.revues.org/index1892.html

Mendelsohn, Oliver; Vicziany, Marika (1998) The Untouchables. Subordination, Poverty and the State in Modern India. New Delhi: Cambridge University Press.

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Notes

1  On the post-Khairlanji protests, see Jaoul (2008).

2  On the failure of this law, see Galanter (1989); also a more recent press report by Frontline: http://www.frontlineonnet.com/fl2624/stories/20091204262400400.htm

3  See for instance: Brass (1998); Mendelsohn & Vicziany (1998); Fuller & Bénéï (2000).

4  Patil, Pratap. 'Khairlanji', documentary movie. Vivid Vision Production, 43 minutes.

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References

Electronic reference

Nicolas Jaoul, « Anand Teltumbde, Khairllanji. A Strange and Bitter Crop », South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal [Online], Book Reviews, Online since 22 janvier 2010, Connection on 28 juin 2010. URL : http://samaj.revues.org/index2937.html

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Author

Nicolas Jaoul

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http://samaj.revues.org/index2937.html

Akali

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In Sikhism, Akali word when used in the form of an adjective refers to somebody/something that is "pertaining to Akaal (Akal) or the Supreme Power" or in simple words is "Divine". [1]

In the form of a Noun it refers to somebody who is[1]:-

  1. An admirer and follower of Akaal ie. the admirer and follower of Supreme Power.
  2. Khalsa of waheguru.
  3. this word is also used for Nihangs

Some of the qualities of an Akali human are that the person should be[1]:-

  1. Admirer and follower of the "Supreme Power" and its laws.
  2. Though present in the material world, is unique and is not attached too much to that material world.
  3. Earns his/her bread by hard work and considers begging as "haraam" (highly illegitimate).
  4. Considers happiness/good-times and sorrow/bad-times as both the same under the divine law and part of day to day life. (Particularly, this is in reference to Guru Nanak's philosophy in AGGS where he mentions that "dukh" and "sukh" both have to be faced in this world and asking for only "sukhs" from the Supreme Power is a futile effort and is bound to be rejected.)
  5. A person who selflessly works for social cause and protects the Gurdwaras and is always conscious and ready for the struggle for the righteous cause.
  6. A person who does not perform the "pooja" of any other "devi" or "devs" but is only the follower and believer of "One Supreme" Akaal or Akal Purkh and abides by the principles established by Guru Gobind Singh

There is a subtle difference between the usage of the words Nihang and Akali.

[edit] Trivia

Nihang word in common day to day language has become synonymous with all the people who are born in the Nihang families. However, the acts of such a person may disqualify him/her from being called an Akali. Similarly, in common day to day language the people of Punjab and neighboring states have begun to call the politicians of the Akali Dal political parties as "Akalis" [2], however they may not be "Akalis" in strict literary sense of the word.

[edit] References

  1. ^ a b c Nabha, Kahan Singh (1930) (in Punjabi). Gur Shabad Ratnakar Mahan Koshਗੁਰ ਸ਼ਬਦ ਰਤਨਾਕਰ ਮਹਾਨ ਕੋਸ਼. p. 720. http://www.ik13.com/online_library.htm#mahankosh. Retrieved 2008-01-01. (Punjabi)
  2. ^ Gill, P.P.S (2002-01-11). "Akali politics, brain teaser" (in English). The Tribune. 



Shiromani Akali Dal

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Akali Dal, also called Shiromani Akali Dal (Supreme Akali Party), is a collection of Sikh political parties mainly based in Punjab founded/headed by different people. The modern-day Akali Dal is made up of several break away factions that were once part of the same intellect, a proper unified Akali Dal, of times of Master Tara Singh and Sant Fateh Singh. Then for political/non-political reasons, some chose to break away and establish their own Akali Dals and thus how Akali Dal entered into factionalism.

Akali Dal was formed on 13 December 1920 after the formation of Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC), a religious body formed to secure Sikh Gurdwaras from corrupt priests. Akali Dal considers itself a religio-political party and the principal representative of Sikhs. Sardar Sarmukh Singh Chubbal was the first president of a unified proper Akali Dal, but it was under Master Tara Singh that Akali Dal became a force to reckon with.

The party launched the Punjabi Suba movement to create a Sikh majority state in the undivided East Punjab under the leadership of Sant Fateh Singh. In 1966, the modern-day East Punjab was formed, but its division led to bitter conflict. Akali Dal came to power in Punjab, but many times the party's governments were dismissed by the Indian National Congress ruling at the federal level.

The Dal's chief opponent on the political front is the Indian National Congress, due to the anti-Sikh riots in 1984 being instigated by Congress mobds and propaganda. Its political ally in the state and at the Centre is the Bharatiya Janata Party. Since Punjab is about 65% Sikh, the SAD needs the support of as many Hindus as the BJP can get to form lasting administrations, and the BJP needs the SAD to bring as many parliamentary seats from Punjab as it can to form a Union government.

Akali Dal's history is full of divisions and factionalism. Each faction claims to be the real Akali Dal. In 2003, the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), headed by Parkash Singh Badal, was the largest faction and the one recognized as having the name SAD (Badal) by the Election Commission of India. Other then-active factions included Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal led by Jathedar Gurcharan Singh Tohra, Shiromani Akali Dal (Panthik) led by Maharaja Capt. Amarinder Singh (which later merged with Congress), Shiromani Akali Dal (Democratic) led by Sardar Kuldip Singh Wadala, Shiromani Akali Dal (Longowal) founded on principles of late Sardar Harchand Singh Longowal, Shiromani Akali Dal (1920) and Haryana State Akali Dal, a former part of Badal's Akali Dal but separated from it because of him daring to challenge Sikh authority and depose a Jathedar of Akal Takht, one of the main authorities of Sikhism.

In the fall of 2003, the Badal and Tohra factions reunified.

As of now, August 2008, there are six groups claiming to be the Akali Dal. They are Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), Shiromani Akali Dal (Simranjit Singh Mann), Shiromani Akali Dal Delhi, Haryana State Akali Dal, Shiromani Akali Dal (UK) and Shiromani Akali Dal Amritsar (Panch Pardhani).

The basic philosophy of Akali Dal is to give political voice to Sikh issues (Panthic cause) and it believes that religion and politics go hand in hand.

At the February 2007 Punjab state elections, the Shiromani Akali Dal led by Parkash Singh Badal won 48 of the 117 seats, becoming the largest party in the East Punjab State Assembly. The alliance of the Shiromani Akali Dal led by Parkash Singh Badal and Bharatiya Janata Party took over the state government from the Indian National Congress, with Prakash Singh Badal as chief minister. [1]

Shiromany Akali Dal is presently ruled by the Badal clan.


[edit] See also

[edit] External links

[edit] References

History of Sikhism

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The Ik Onkar, is the one of the main symbols of Sikhism. The other being the Khanda.

The history of Sikhism is closely associated with the history of Punjab and the socio-political situation in medieval India. Essentially Sikh history, with respect to Sikhism as a distinct political body, can be said to have begun with the martyrdom of the fifth Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan Dev in 1606. Sikh distinction was further enhanced by the establishment of the Khalsa (ਖ਼ਾਲਸਾ), by Guru Gobind Singh in 1699.[1] The evolution of Sikhism began with the emergence of Guru Nanak as a religious leader and a social reformer during the fifteenth century in Punjab. The religious practice was formalized by Guru Gobind Singh on March 30, 1699. The latter baptised five persons from different social backgrounds to form Khalsa. The first five, Pure Ones, then baptized Gobind Singh into the Khalsa fold.[2] This gives the Sikhism, as an organized grouping, a religious history of around 400 years.

Generally Sikhism has had amicable relations with other religions. However, during the Mughal rule of India (1556–1707), emerging religion had strained relation with the ruling Mughals. Prominent Sikh Gurus were martyred by Mughals for opposing some Mughal emperors' persecution of minority religious communities.[3] Subsequently, Sikhism militarized to oppose Mughal hegemony. The emergence of the Sikh Empire under reign of the Maharajah Ranjit Singh was characterized by religious tolerance and pluralism with Christians, Muslims and Hindus in positions of power. The establishment of the Sikh Empire is commonly considered the zenith of Sikhism at political level,[4] during this time the Sikh Empire came to include Kashmir, Ladakh, and Peshawar. Hari Singh Nalwa, the Commander-in-chief of the Sikh army along the North West Frontier, took the boundary of the Sikh Empire to the very mouth of the Khyber Pass. The Empire's secular administration integrated innovative military, economic and governmental reforms.

The months leading up to the partition of India in 1947, saw heavy conflict in the Punjab between Sikh and Muslims, which saw the effective religious migration of Punjabi Sikhs and Hindus from West Punjab which mirrored a similar religious migration of Punjabi Muslims in East Punjab.

Contents

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[edit] Guru Nanak

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Guru Nanak Dev

Guru Nanak Dev (1469–1538), founder of Sikhism, was born to Kalu Mehta and Mata Tripta, wherein the Bedi Khatri clan of a Hindu family in the village of Talwandi, now called Nankana Sahib, near Lahore.[5] His father, a Hindu named Mehta Kalu, was a Patwari, an accountant of land revenue in the government. Nanak's mother was Mata Tripta, and he had one older sister, Bibi Nanki.

From an early age Guru Nanak seemed to have acquired a questioning and enquiring mind and refused as a child to wear the ritualistic "sacred" thread called a Janeu and instead said that he would wear the true name of God in his heart as protection, as the thread which could be broken, be soiled, burnt or lost could not offer any security at all. From early childhood, Bibi Nanki saw in her brother the Light of God but she did not reveal this secret to anyone. She is known as the first disciple of Guru Nanak.

Even as a boy, Nanak was fascinated by religion, and his desire to explore the mysteries of life eventually led him to leave home. It was during this period that Nanak was said to have met Kabir (1440–1518), a saint revered by many. Nanak married Sulakhni, daughter of Moolchand Chona, a trader from Batala, and they had two sons, Sri Chand and Lakshmi Das.

His brother-in-law, Jai Ram, the husband of his sister Nanki, obtained a job for him in Sultanpur as the manager of the government granary. One morning, when he was twenty-eight, Guru Nanak Dev went as usual down to the river to bathe and meditate. It was said that he was gone for three days. When he reappeared, it is said he was "filled with the spirit of God". His first words after his re-emergence were: "there is no Hindu, there is no Muslim". With this secular principle he began his missionary work.[6] He made four distinct major journeys, in the four different directions, which are called Udasis, spanning many thousands of kilometres, preaching the message of God.[5]

Guru Nanak spent the final years of his life in Kartarpur where Langar (free blessed food) was available. The food would be partaken of by Hindus, rich, poor, high or/and so called low castes. Guru Nanak worked in the fields and earned his livelihood. After appointing Bhai Lehna as the new Sikh Guru, on 22 September 1539, aged 70, Guru Nanak met with his demise.

[edit] Guru Angad

In 1538, Guru Nanak chose Lehna, his disciple, as a successor to the Guruship rather than one of his sons.[6] Bhai Lehna was named Guru Angad and became the successor of Guru Nanak. Bhai Lehna was born in the village of Harike in Ferozepur district in Punjab, on March 31, 1504. He was the son of a small trader named Pheru. His mother's name was Mata Ramo (also known as Mata Sabhirai, Mansa Devi, Daya Kaur). Baba Narayan Das Trehan was his grand father, whose ancestral house was at Matte-di-Sarai near Mukatsar.

Under the influence of his mother, Bhai Lehna began to worship Durga (A Hindu Goddess). He used to lead a group of Hindu worshippers to Jawalamukhi Temple every year. He married Mata Khivi in January 1520 and had two sons, (Dasu and Datu), and two daughters (Amro and Anokhi). The whole Pheru family had to leave their ancestral village because of the ransacking by the Mughal and Baloch military who had come with Emperor Babur. After this the family settled at the village of Khadur Sahib by the River Beas, near Tarn Taran Sahib, a small town about 25 km. from Amritsar city.

One day, Bhai Lehna heard the recitation of a hymn of Guru Nanak from Bhai Jodha (a Sikh of Guru Nanak Sahib) who was in Khadur Sahib. He was thrilled and decided to proceed to Kartarpur to have an audience (darshan) with Guru Nanak. So while on the annual pilgrimage to Jwalamukhi Temple, Bhai Lehna left his journey to visit Kartarpur and see Baba Nanak. His very first meeting with Guru Nanak completely transformed him. He renounced the worship of the Hindu Goddess, dedicated himself to the service of Guru Nanak and so became his disciple, (his Sikh), and began to live in Kartarpur.

His devotion and service (Sewa) to Guru Nanak and his holy mission was so great that he was instated as the Second Nanak on September 7, 1539 by Guru Nanak. Earlier Guru Nanak tested him in various ways and found an embodiment of obedience and service in him. He spent six or seven years in the service of Guru Nanak at Kartarpur.

After the death of Guru Nanak on September 22, 1539, Guru Angad left Kartarpur for the village of Khadur Sahib (near Goindwal Sahib). He carried forward the principles of Guru Nanak both in letter and spirit. Yogis and Saints of different sects visited him and held detailed discussions about Sikhism with him.

Guru Angad introduced a new alphabet known as Gurmukhi Script, modifying the old Punjabi script's characters. Soon, this script became very popular and started to be used by the people in general. He took great interest in the education of children by opening many schools for their instruction and thus increased the number of literate people. For the youth he started the tradition of Mall Akhara, where physical as well as spiritual exercises were held. He collected the facts about Guru Nanak's life from Bhai Bala and wrote the first biography of Guru Nanak. He also wrote 63 Saloks (stanzas), which are included in the Guru Granth Sahib. He popularised and expanded the institution of Guru ka Langar that had been started by Guru Nanak.

Guru Angad travelled widely and visited all important religious places and centres established by Guru Nanak for the preaching of Sikhism. He also established hundreds of new Centres of Sikhism (Sikh religious Institutions) and thus strengthened the base of Sikhism. The period of his Guruship was the most crucial one. The Sikh community had moved from having a founder to a succession of Gurus and the infrastructure of Sikh society was strengthened and crystallized – from being an infant, Sikhism had moved to being a young child and ready to face the dangers that were around. During this phase, Sikhism established its own separate spiritual path.

Guru Angad, following the example set by Guru Nanak, nominated Sri Amar Das as his successor (the Third Nanak) before his death. He presented all the holy scripts, including those he received from Guru Nanak, to Guru Amar Das. He breathed his last on March 29, 1552 at the age of forty-eight. It is said that he started to build a new town, at Goindwal near Khadur Sahib and Guru Amar Das Sahib was appointed to supervise its construction. It is also said that Humayun, when defeated by Sher Shah Suri, came to obtain the blessings of Guru Angad in regaining the throne of Delhi.

[edit] Guru Amar Das

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Guru Amar Das

Guru Amar Das became the third Sikh guru in 1552 at the age of 73. Goindwal became an important centre for Sikhism during the Guruship of Guru Amar Das. He continued to preach the principle of equality for women, the prohibition of Sati and the practise of Langar.[7] In 1567, Emperor Akbar sat with the ordinary and poor people of Punjab to have Langar. Guru Amar Das also trained 140 apostles, of which 52 were women, to manage the rapid expansion of the religion.[8] Before he died in 1574 aged 95, he appointed his son-in-law Jetha as the fourth Sikh Guru.

It is recorded that before becoming a Sikh, Bhai Amar Das, as he was known at the time, was a very religious Vaishanavite Hindu who spent most of his life performing all of the ritual pilgrimages and fasts of a devout Hindu. One day, Bhai Amar Das heard some hymns of Guru Nanak being sung by Bibi Amro Ji, the daughter of Guru Angad, the second Sikh Guru. Bibi Amro was married to Bhai Sahib's brother, Bhai Manak Chand's son who was called Bhai Jasso. Bhai Sahib was so impressed and moved by these Shabads that he immediately decided to go to see Guru Angad at Khadur Sahib. It is recorded that this event took place when Bhai Sahib was 61 years old.

In 1635, upon meeting Guru Angad, Bhai Sahib was so touched by the Guru's message that he became a devout Sikh. Soon he became involved in Sewa (Service) to the Guru and the Community. Under the impact of Guru Angad and the teachings of the Gurus, Bhai Amar Das became a devout Sikh. He adopted Guru as his spiritual guide (Guru). Bhai Sahib began to live at Khadur Sahib, where he used to rise early in the morning and bring water from the Beas River for the Guru's bath; he would wash the Guru's clothes and fetch wood from the jungle for 'Guru ka Langar'. He was so dedicated to Sewa and the Guru and had completely extinguished pride and was totally lost in this commitment that he was considered an old man who had no interest in life; he was dubbed Amru, and generally forsaken.

However, as a result of Bhai Sahib's commitment to Sikhi principles, dedicated service and devotion to the Sikh cause, Guru Angad Sahib appointed Guru Amar Das Sahib as third Nanak in March 1552 at the age of 73. He established his headquarters at the newly built town of Goindwal, which Guru Angad had established.

Soon large numbers of Sikhs started flocking to Goindwal to see the new Guru. Here, Guru Amar Das propagated the Sikh faith in a vigorous, systematic and planned manner. He divided the Sikh Sangat area into 22 preaching centres or Manjis, each under the charge of a devout Sikh. He himself visited and sent Sikh missionaries to different parts of India to spread Sikhism.

Guru Amar Das was impressed with Bhai Gurdas' thorough knowledge of Hindi and Sanskrit and the Hindu scriptures. Following the tradition of sending out Masands across the country, Guru Amar Das deputed Bhai Gurdas to Agra to spread the gospel of Sikhism. Before leaving, Guru Amar Das prescribed the following routine for Sikhs:

" He who calls himself a Sikh of the True Guru, He must get up in the morning and say his prayers. He must rise in the early hours and bathe in the holy tank. He must meditate on God as advised by the Guru. And rid him of the afflictions of sins and evil. As the day dawns, he should recite scriptures, and repeat God's name in every activity. He to whom the Guru takes kindly is shown the path. Nanak! I seek the dust of the feet of the Guru's Sikh who himself remembers God and makes others remember Him. (Gauri)"

Guru Ji strengthened the tradition of 'Guru ka Langar' and made it compulsory for the visitor to the Guru to eat first, saying that 'Pehle Pangat Phir Sangat' (first visit the Langar then go to the Guru). Once the emperor Akbar came to see Guru Sahib and he had to eat the coarse rice in the Langar before he could have an interview with Guru Sahib. He was so much impressed with this system that he expressed his desire to grant some royal property for 'Guru ka Langar', but Guru Sahib declined it with respect.

He introduced new birth, marriage and death ceremonies. Thus he raised the status of women and protected the rights of female infants who were killed without question as they were deemed to have no status. These teachings met with stiff resistance from the Orthodox Hindus. He fixed three Gurpurbs for Sikh celebrations: Diwali, Vaisakhi and Maghi.

Guru Amar Das not only preached the equality of people irrespective of their caste but he also fostered the idea of women's equality. He preaching strongly against the practice of Sati (a Hindu wife burning on her husband's funeral pyre). Guru Amar Das also disapproved of a young widow remaining unmarried for the rest of her life.

Guru Amar Das constructed "Baoli" at Goindwal Sahib having eighty-four steps and made it a Sikh pilgrimage centre for the first time in the history of Sikhism. He reproduced more copies of the hymns of Guru Nanak and Guru Angad. He also composed 869 (according to some chronicles these were 709) verses (stanzas) including Anand Sahib, and then later on Guru Arjan (fifth Guru) made all the Shabads part of Guru Granth Sahib.

When it came time for the Guru's younger daughter Bibi Bhani to marry, he selected a pious and diligent young follower of his called Jetha from Lahore. Jetha had come to visit the Guru with a party of pilgrims from Lahore and had become so enchanted by the Guru's teachings that he had decided to settle in Goindwal. Here he earned a living selling wheat and would regularly attend the services of Guru Amar Das in his spare time.

Guru Amar Das did not consider anyone of his sons fit for Guruship and chose instead his son-in law (Guru) Ram Das to succeed him. Guru Amar Das Sahib at the age of 95 died on September 1, 1574 at Goindwal in District Amritsar, after giving responsibility of Guruship to the Fourth Nanak, Guru Ram Das.

[edit] Guru Ram Das

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Guru Ram Das

Guru Ram Das (Punjabi: ਗੁਰੂ ਰਾਮ ਦਾਸ) (Born in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan on 24 September 1534 – 1 September 1581, Amritsar, Punjab, India) was the fourth of the Ten Gurus of Sikhism, and he became Guru on 30 August 1574, following in the footsteps of Guru Amar Das. He was born in Lahore to a Sodhi family of the Khatri clan. His father was Hari Das and mother Anup Devi, and his name was Jetha, meaning 'first born'. His wife was Bibi Bhani, the younger daughter of Guru Amar Das, the third guru of the Sikhs. They had three sons: Prithi Chand, Mahadev and Arjan Dev. As a Guru one of his main contributions to Sikhism was organizing the structure of Sikh society. Additionally, he was the author of Laava, the hymns of the Marriage Rites, the designer of the Harmandir Sahib, and the planner and creator of the township of Ramdaspur (later Amritsar). A hymn by Guru Ram Das from page 305 of the Guru Granth Sahib: "One who calls himself a Sikh of the True Guru shall get up early morning and meditate on the Lord's Name. Make effort regularly to cleanse, bathe and dip in the ambrosial pool. Upon Guru's instructions, chant Har, Har singing which, all misdeeds, sins and pains shall go away." Guru Ram Das nominated Guru Arjan Dev, his youngest son, as the next Guru of the Sikhs.

[edit] Guru Arjan

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Guru Arjan Dev

In 1581, Guru Arjan — the youngest son of the fourth guru — became the Fifth Guru of the Sikhs. In addition to being responsible for building the Golden Temple, he prepared the Sikh Sacred text and his personal addition of some 2,000 plus hymns in the Gurū Granth Sāhib.

In 1604 he installed the Ādi Granth for the first time as the Holy Book of the Sikhs. In 1606, for refusing to make changes to the Gurū Granth Sāhib, he was tortured and killed by the Mughal rulers of the time.[6]

[edit] Guru Har Gobind

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Guru Har Gobind

Guru Har Gobind became the sixth guru of the Sikhs. He carried two swords — one for Spiritual reasons and one for temporal (worldly) reasons.[9] From this point onward, the Sikhs became a military force and always had a trained fighting force to defend their independence.

[edit] Guru Har Rai

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Guru Har Rai

Guru Har Rai (Punjabi: ਗੁਰੂ ਹਰਿ ਰਾਇ) (26 February 1630 - 6 October 1661) was the seventh of the ten Gurus of Sikhism, becoming Guru on 8 March 1644, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, Guru Har Gobind, who was the sixth guru. Before he died, he nominated Guru Har Krishan, his youngest son, as the next Guru of the Sikhs.

As a very young child he was disturbed by the suffering of a flower damaged by his robe in passing. Though such feelings are common with children, Guru Har Rai would throughout his life be noted for his compassion for life and living things. His grandfather, who was famed as an avid hunter, is said to have saved the Moghul Emperor Jahangir's life during a tiger's attack. Guru Har Rai continued the hunting tradition of his grandfather, but he would allow no animals to be killed on his grand Shikars. The Guru instead captured the animal and added it to his zoo. He made several tours to the Malwa and Doaba regions of the Punjab.

His son, Ram Rai, seeking to assuage concerns of Aurangzeb over one line in Guru Nanak's verse (Mitti Mussalmam ki pede pai kumhar) suggested that the word Mussalmam was a mistake on the copyist's part, therefore distorting Bani. The Guru refused to meet with him again. The Guru is believed to have said, "Ram Rai, you have disobeyed my order and sinned. I will never see you again on account of your infidelity." It was also reported to the Guru that Ram Rai had also worked miracles in the Mughal's court against his father's direct instructions. Sikhs are constrained by their Gurus to not believe in magic and myth or miracles. Just before his death at age, 31, Guru Har Rai passed the Gaddi of Nanak on to his younger son, the five year old — Guru Har Krishan.

Guru Har Rai was the son of Baba Gurdita and Mata Nihal Kaur (also known as Mata Ananti Ji). Baba Gurdita was the son of the sixth Guru, Guru Hargobind. Guru Har Rai married Mata Kishan Kaur (sometimes also referred to as Sulakhni), daughter of Sri Daya Ram of Anoopshahr (Bulandshahr) in Uttar Pradesh on Har Sudi 3, Samvat 1697. Guru Har Rai had two sons: Baba Ram Rai and Sri Har Krishan.

Although, Guru Har Rai was a man of peace, he never disbanded the armed Sikh Warriors (Saint Soldiers), who earlier were maintained by his grandfather, Guru Hargobind. He always boosted the military spirit of the Sikhs, but he never himself indulged in any direct political and armed controversy with the contemporary Mughal Empire. Once, Dara Shikoh (the eldest son of emperor Shah Jahan), came to Guru Har Rai asking for help in the war of succession with his brother, the murderous Aurangzeb. The Guru had promised his grandfather to use the Sikh Cavalry only in defence. Nevertheless, he helped him to escape safely from the bloody hands of Aurangzeb's armed forces by having his Sikh warriors hide all the ferry boats at the river crossing used by Dara Shikoh in his escape.

[edit] Guru Har Krishan

Guru Har Krishan borne in Kirat Pur, Ropar (Punjabi: ਗੁਰੂ ਹਰਿ ਕ੍ਰਿਸ਼ਨ) (7 July 1656 - 30 March 1664) was the eighth of the Ten Gurus of Sikhism, becoming the Guru on 7 October 1661, following in the footsteps of his father, Guru Har Rai. Before Har Krishan died of complications of Smallpox, he nominated his granduncle, Guru Teg Bahadur, as the next Guru of the Sikhs. The following is a summary of the main highlights of his short life:

" Sri Guru Harkrishan Ji was the epitome of sensibility, generosity and courage. There is a famous incident from his early age. Once on the way to Delhi from Punjab he met an arrogant Brahmin Pundit called Lal Chand in Panjokhara town. The Pundit asked him to recite Salokas from the Geeta since his name was similar to that of Lord Krishna. Guru Ji invited a mute person called Chhajju Mehra and placed his stick on his head. He immediately started interpreting salokas from the Geeta. Everybody around was dumbstruck. Lal Chand's arrogance too was shattered and he asked for Guru Ji's forgiveness."

When Har Krishan stayed in Delhi there was a smallpox epidemic and many people were dying. According to Sikh history at Har Krishan's blessing, the lake at Bangla Sahib provided cure for thousands. Gurdwara Bangla Sahib was constructed in the Guru's memory. This is where he stayed during his visit to Delhi. Gurdwara Bala Sahib was built in south Delhi besides the bank of the river Yamuna, where Har Krishan was cremated at the age of about 7 years and 8 months. Guru Har Krishan was the youngest Guru at only 7 years of age. He did not make any contributions to Gurbani.

[edit] Guru Tegh Bahadur

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Guru Tegh Bahadur

Guru Tegh Bahadur is the ninth of the Sikh Gurus. Guru Tegh Bahadur sacrificed himself to protect Hindus. He was asked by Aurungzeb, the Mughal emperor, under coercion by Naqshbandi Islamists, to convert to Islam or to sacrifice himself. The exact place where he attained martyrdom is in front of the Red Fort in Delhi (Lal Qila) and the gurdwara is called Sisganj.[10] This marked a turning point for Sikhism. His successor, Guru Gobind Singh further militarised his followers.

[edit] Guru Gobind Singh Ji

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Guru Gobind Singh

Guru Gobind Singh Ji was the tenth guru of Sikhs. He was born in 1666 at Patna (Capital of Bihar, India). In 1675 Pundits from Kashmir in India came to Anandpur Sahib pleading to Guru Teg Bhadur Ji (Father of Guru Gobind Singh Ji) about Aurangzeb forcing them to convert to Islam. Guru Teg Bahadur told them that martyrdom of a great man was needed. His son, Guru Gobind Singh Ji said "Who could be greater than you", to his father. Guru Teg Bahadur Ji told pundits to tell Aurangzeb's men that if Guru Teg Bahadur Ji will become Muslim, they all will. Guru Teg Bahadur Ji was then martyred in Delhi, but before that he assigned Guru Gobind Singh Ji as 10th Guru at age of 9. After becoming Guru he commanded Sikhs to be armed. He fought many battles with Aurangzeb and some other Kings of that time, but always winner.

In 1699 he created the Khalsa panth, by giving amrit to sikhs. In 1704 he fought the great battle with collective forces of Aurangzeb, Wazir Khan (Chief of Sarhind), and other kings. He left Anandpur and went to Chamkaur with only 40 sikhs. There he fought the Battle of Chamkaur with 40 sikhs, vastly outnumbered by the Mughal soldiers. His two elder sons (at ages 17, 15) were martyred there. Wazir Khan killed other two (ages 9, 6). Guru Ji sent Aurangzeb the Zafarnamah (Notification of Victory). Then he went to Nanded (Maharashtra, India). From there he made Baba Gurbakhash Singh, also aliased as Baba Banda Singh Bahadur, as his general and sent him to Punjab.

On the evening of the day when Baba Gurbakhash Singh left for Punjab, Guru Gobind Singh was visited by two Muslim soldiers. One of them was commissioned by Wazir Khan, Subedar of Sirhind, to assassinate Guru Gobind Singh. One of the assailants, Bashal Beg, kept a vigil outside the Guru's tent while Jamshed Khan, a hired assassin, stabbed the Guru twice. Khan was killed in one stroke by the Guru, while those outside, alerted by the tumult, killed Beg. Although the wound was sewn up the following day, the Guru died in Nanded, Maharashtra, India in 1708[11].

Shortly before passing away Guru Gobind Singh Ji ordered that the Guru Granth Sahib (the Sikh Holy Scripture), would be the ultimate spiritual authority for the Sikhs and temporal authority would be vested in the Khalsa Panth – the Sikh Nation. The first Sikh Holy Scripture was compiled and edited by the Fifth Guru, Guru Arjan in AD 1604, although some of the earlier gurus are also known to have documented their revelations. This is one of the few scriptures in the world that has been compiled by the founders of a faith during their own life time. The Guru Granth Sahib is particularly unique among sacred texts in that it is written in Gurmukhi script but contains many languages including Punjabi, Hindi-Urdu, Sanskrit, Bhojpuri, Assamese and Persian. Sikhs consider the Guru Granth Sahib the last, perpetual living guru.

[edit] Sikh Empire

[edit] History

Ranjit Singh was crowned on April 12, 1801 (to coincide with Baisakhi). Sahib Singh Bedi, a descendant of Guru Nanak Dev, conducted the coronation [12]. Gujranwala served as his capital from 1799. In 1802 he shifted his capital to Lahore & Amritsar. Ranjit Singh rose to power in a very short period, from a leader of a single Sikh misl to finally becoming the Maharaja (Emperor) of Punjab.

There was strong collaboration in defense against foreign incursions such as those initiated by Ahmed Shah Abdali and Nadir Shah. The city of Amritsar was attacked numerous times. Yet the time is remembered by Sikh historians as the "Heroic Century". This is mainly to describe the rise of Sikhs to political power against large odds. The circumstances were hostile religious environment against Sikhs, a tiny Sikh population compared to other religious and political powers, which were much larger in the region than the Sikhs.

[edit] Before the Empire

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Exterior of Panja Sahib Gurdwara in Hasan Abdal.

The period from 1716 to 1799 was a highly turbulent time politically and militarily in the Punjab. This was caused by the overall decline of the Mughal Empire.[13] This left a power vacuum that was eventually filled by the Sikhs in the late 18th century, after fighting off local Mughal remnants and allied Rajput leaders, Afghans, and occasionally hostile Punjabi Muslims who sided with other Muslim forces. Sikh warlords eventually formed their own independent Sikh administrative regions (misls), which were united in large part by Ranjit Singh.

[edit] Formation

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Portrait of Maharaja Ranjit Singh

The Sikh Empire (from 1801–1849) was formed on the foundations of the Punjabi Army by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The Empire extended from Khyber Pass in the west, to Kashmir in the north, to Sindh in the south, and Tibet in the east. The main geographical footprint of the empire was the Punjab. The religious demography of the Sikh Empire was Muslim (80%), Sikh (10%), Hindu (10%),[14].

The foundations of the Sikh Empire, during the Punjab Army, could be defined as early as 1707, starting from the death of Aurangzeb and the downfall of the Mughal Empire. The fall of the Mughal Empire provided opportunities for the army, known as the Dal Khalsa, to lead expeditions against the Mughals and Afghans. This led to a growth of the army, which was split into different Punjabi Armies and then semi-independent misls. Each of these component armies were known as a misl, each controlling different areas and cities. However, in the period from 1762-1799 Sikh rulers of their misls appeared to be coming into their own. The formal start of the Sikh Empire began with the disbandment of the Punjab Army by the time of Coronation of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1801, creating the one unified political Empire. All the misldars who were affiliated with the Army were nobility with usually long and prestigious family histories in Punjab's history.[15][16]

[edit] End of Empire

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Map showing expansion of Sikh empire from 1765 to 1805

After Maharaja Ranjit Singh's death in 1839, the empire was severely weakened by internal divisions and political mismanagement. This opportunity was used by the British Empire to launch the Anglo-Sikh Wars. The Battle of Ferozeshah in 1845 marked many turning points, the British encountered the Punjabi Army, opening with a gun-duel in which the Sikhs "had the better of the British artillery". But as the British made advancements, Europeans in their army were especially targeted, as the Sikhs believed if the army "became demoralised, the backbone of the enemy's position would be broken"[17]. The fighting continued throughout the night earning the nickname "night of terrors". The British position "grew graver as the night wore on", and "suffered terrible casualties with every single member of the Governor General's staff either killed or wounded"[18].

British General Sire James Hope Grant recorded: "Truly the night was one of gloom and forbidding and perhaps never in the annals of warfare has a British Army on such a large scale been nearer to a defeat which would have involved annihilation"[18] The Punjabi ended up recovering their camp, and the British were exhausted. Lord Hardinge sent his son to Mudki with a sword from his Napoleonic campaigns. A note in Robert Needham Cust's diary revealed that the "British generals decided to lay down arms: News came from the Governor General that our attack of yesterday had failed, that affairs were disparate, all state papers were to be destroyed, and that if the morning attack failed all would be over, this was kept secret by Mr.Currie and we were considering measures to make an unconditional surrender to save the wounded..."[18].

However, a series of events of the Sikhs being betrayed by some prominent leaders in the army led to its downfall. Maharaja Gulab Singh and Dhian Singh, were Hindu Dogras from Jammu, and top Generals of the army. Tej Singh and Lal Singh were secretly allied to the British. They supplied important war plans of the Army, and provided the British with updated vital intelligence on the Army dealings, which ended up changing the scope of the war and benefiting the British positions[19][20].

The Punjab Empire was finally dissolved after a series of wars with the British at the end of the Second Anglo-Sikh War in 1849 into separate princely states, and the British province of Punjab that where granted a statehood, and eventually a lieutenant governorship stationed in Lahore as a direct representative of the Royal Crown in London.

[edit] Modern

The months leading up to the partition of India in 1947, saw heavy conflict in the Punjab between Sikh and Muslims, which saw the effective religious migration of Punjabi Sikhs and Hindus from West Punjab which mirrored a similar religious migration of Punjabi Muslims in East Punjab.[21] The 1960s saw growing animosity and rioting between Punjabi Sikhs and Hindus in India,[22] as the Punjabi Sikhs agitated for the creation of a Punjabi Sikh majority state, an undertaking which was promised to the Sikh leader Master Tara Singh by Nehru in return for Sikh political support during the negotiations for Indian Independence.[23] Sikhs obtained the Sikh majority state of Punjab on November 1, 1966.

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Manmohan Singh became the first Sikh Prime Minister of India and is widely credited for initiating economic reforms in India.

Communal tensions arose again in the late 1970s, fueled by Sikh claims of discrimination and marginalization by the secularist dominated Indian National Congress ruling party and the "dictatorial" tactics adopted the then Indian Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi.[24] Frank[24] argues that Gandhi's assumption of emergency powers in 1975 resulted in the weakening of the "legitimate and impartial machinery of government" and her increasing "paranoia" of opposing political groups led her to instigate a "despotic policy of playing castes, religions and political groups against each other for political advantage". As a reaction against these actions came the emergence of the Sikh leader Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale who vocalized Sikh sentiment for justice and advocated the creation of a Sikh homeland, Khalistan. This accelerated Punjab into a state of communal violence.[25] Gandhi's 1984 action to defeat Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale led to desecration of the Golden Temple in Operation Bluestar and ultimately led to Gandhi's assassination by her Sikh bodyguards.[25] This resulted in an explosion of violence against the Sikh community in the Anti Sikh Riots which resulted in the massacre of thousands of Sikhs throughout India; Khushwant Singh described the actions as being a Sikh pogrom in which he "felt like a refugee in my country. In fact, I felt like a Jew in Nazi Germany".[26] Since 1984, relations between Sikhs and Hindus have reached a rapprochement helped by growing economic prosperity; however in 2002 the claims of the popular right-wing Hindu organization the RSS, that "Sikhs are Hindus" angered Sikh sensibilities.[27] Many Sikhs still are campaigning for justice for victims of the violence and the political and economic needs of the Punjab espoused in the Khalistan movement. In 1996 the Special Rapporteur for the Commission on Human Rights on freedom of religion or belief, Abdelfattah Amor (Tunisia, 1993–2004), visited India in order to compose a report on religious discrimination. In 1997,[28] Amor concluded, "it appears that the situation of the Sikhs in the religious field is satisfactory, but that difficulties are arising in the political (foreign interference, terrorism, etc.), economic (in particular with regard to sharing of water supplies) and even occupational fields. Information received from nongovernment (sic) sources indicates that discrimination does exist in certain sectors of the public administration; examples include the decline in the number of Sikhs in the police force and the absence of Sikhs in personal bodyguard units since the murder of Indira Gandhi".[29] In May 22, 2004 Manmohan Singh became the first Sikh to become the Prime Minister of India.

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ "BBC History of Sikhism - The Khalsa". Sikh world history. BBC Religion & Ethics. 2003-08-29. http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/sikhism/history/history_1.shtml. Retrieved 2008-04-04. 
  2. ^ Singh, Patwant (2000). The Sikhs. Knopf. pp. 14. ISBN 0375407286. 
  3. ^ McLeod, Hew (1987). "Sikhs and Muslims in the Punjab". South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 22 (s1): 155–165. doi:10.1080/00856408708723379. 
  4. ^ Lafont, Jean-Marie ((May 16, 2002)). Maharaja Ranjit Singh: Lord of the Five Rivers (French Sources of Indian History Sources). USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 23–29. ISBN 0195661117. 
  5. ^ a b Singh, Khushwant (2006). The Illustrated History of the Sikhs. India: Oxford University Press. pp. 12–13. ISBN 0-19-567747-1.  Also, as according to the Purātan Janamsākhī (the birth stories of Nanak).
  6. ^ a b c Shackle, Christopher; Mandair, Arvind-Pal Singh (2005). Teachings of the Sikh Gurus: Selections from the Sikh Scriptures. United Kingdom: Routledge. xiii-xiv. ISBN 0-415-26604-1. 
  7. ^ Duggal, Kartar Singh (1988). Philosophy and Faith of Sikhism. Himalayan Institute Press. p. 15. ISBN 0-89389-109-6. 
  8. ^ Brar, Sandeep Singh (1998). "The Sikhism Homepage: Guru Amar Das". http://www.sikhs.org/guru3.htm. Retrieved 2006-05-26. 
  9. ^ Mahmood, Cynthia (2002). A Sea of Orange. United States: Xlibris. p. 16. ISBN 1-4010-2856-X. 
  10. ^ Rama (1986). Celestiyal Song/Gobind Geet: The Dramatic DialogueyBetween Guru Gobind Singh and Banda Singh Bahadyur. Hyimalayan Iystitute Press. pp. 7–8. ISBN 0-89389-103-7. 
  11. ^ Today in Sikh History - 4th October :Gateway to Sikhism
  12. ^ ""Ranjit Singh, Maharaja", Sikh Cyber Museum". Sikhcybermuseum.org.uk. http://www.sikhcybermuseum.org.uk/People/ranjitmaharaja.htm. Retrieved 2009-08-09. 
  13. ^ "Sikh Period - National Fund for Cultural Heritage". Heritage.gov.pk. 1947-08-14. http://www.heritage.gov.pk/html_Pages/sikh.htm. Retrieved 2009-08-09. 
  14. ^ "Ranjit Singh: A Secular Sikh Sovereign by K.S. Duggal. ''(Date:1989. ISBN 8170172446'')". Exoticindiaart.com. 2009-02-01. http://www.exoticindiaart.com/book/details/IDE822/. Retrieved 2009-08-09. 
  15. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, (Edition: Volume V22, Date: 1910-1911), Page 892.
  16. ^ "MAHARAJAH RANJIT SINGH ... - Online Information article about MAHARAJA RANJIT SINGH". Encyclopedia.jrank.org. http://encyclopedia.jrank.org/PYR_RAY/RANJIT_SINGH_MAHARAJA_178o_1839.html. Retrieved 2009-08-09. 
  17. ^ Ranjit Singh: administration and British policy, (Prakash, p.31-33)
  18. ^ a b c Maharaja Ranjit Singh, the last to lay arms, (Duggal,p.136-137)
  19. ^ J. S. Grewal (1998). The Sikhs of the Punjab. Cambridge University Press. 
  20. ^ Maharaja Ranjit Singh, the last to lay arms, (Duggal,p.136-138)
  21. ^ Dutt, Amitava; Surinder Devgun (1977-09-23). "Diffusion of Sikhism and recent migration patterns of Sikhs in India". GeoJournal 1 (5): 81–89. doi:10.1007/BF00704966. ISSN 1572-9893. http://www.springerlink.com/content/p726g4t656018333/. Retrieved 2008-04-04. 
  22. ^ Lukas, J. Anthony (March 20, 1966), "Hindu vs. Sikh: Why the Killing", The New York Times: 209, http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F10916F73D5C15768FDDA90A94DB405B868AF1D3 
  23. ^ Telford, Hamish (November 1992). "The Political Economy of Punjab: Creating Space for Sikh Militancy". Asian Survey 32 (11): 969–987. doi:10.1525/as.1992.32.11.00p0215k. 
  24. ^ a b Frank, Katherine (January 7, 2002). Indira: The Life of Indira Nehru Gandhi. Houghton Mifflin. pp. 312–327. ISBN 039573097X. 
  25. ^ a b Pace, Eric (November 1, 1984), "Assassination in India: Sikhs at the center of the drama; Sikh separation dates back to '47", The New York Times: 24, http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20711FF385D0C728CDDA80994DC484D81 
  26. ^ Peer, Basharat (May 9, 2001). "Anti-Sikh riots a pogrom: Khushwant". News Report. Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/news/2001/may/09sikh.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-04. 
  27. ^ Rambachan, Anantanand. "The Co-existence of Violence and Non-Violence in Hinduism" (PDF). The Ecumenical Review 55: 2003. http://www.wou.edu/~khes/geog451/hindu_violence.pdf. Retrieved 2008-04-04. 
  28. ^ Pike, John (2005-04-27), Military: Sikhs in Punjab, http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/war/punjab.htm, retrieved 2008-04-04 
  29. ^ Amor, Abdelfattah (1997), UNHR Documents on India, Commission on Human Rights resolution 1996/23: Commission on Human Rights, 53rd Session, pp. 1–22, http://ap.ohchr.org/documents/dpage_e.aspx?c=84&su=90 

[edit] External links

Guru Nanak Guru Angad Sikh Guru's Audio
India Today
'America will be nuked by 2013'

Terrorists will set off an atom bomb in the US within the next three years, retired nuclear scientist Robert Beeman has predicted in his just-released novel, No More Time For Sorrow. Beeman maintains that the sacking of the commander of the US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, will only help the terrorists.

"America's enemies in Afghanistan will take renewed encouragement from General McChrystal's firing," the 65-year-old debutant author says. "They will interpret President Barack Obama's action as ideology trumping defence," he adds. Ironically, Beeman spent much of his working life as a scientist at the Three Mile Island civilian nuclear facility, which made international headlines on March 28, 1978, when one of its reactors had a meltdown. It was the most serious accident to have taken place ever in an American nuclear facility.

Beeman, who sounds hawkish in the positions he takes on issues, says General McChrystal had been called back to the "woodshed" in Washington because he spoke out against administrative policies.

"Instead of making an example of him, Obama should applaud his passion. Terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan are planning the next major assault on the US. McChrystal knows this," the author says in an email interview.

General McChrystal, who lost his job because of the derogatory comments he made on President Obama in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, has been replaced by General David Petraeus, the commander who turned around the Iraq war for America.

Beeman may be bang on target about the Taliban celebrating the general's sacking. In a media interview from an undisclosed location, senior Afghan Taliban commander Sirajuddin Haqqani has said the development showed America was frustrated and divided over the Afghan war.

"After the American invasion, my father said Afghanistan would become another Vietnam for the US which is now gradually proving to be true," Haqqani said in the interview to The Daily Beast.

In No More Time For Sorrow - which has just hit the American market - Beeman talks about why today's liberal and progressive approach to terrorism is making America less safe and how an atomic bomb can be built, transported, deployed and triggered by non-technical personnel.

The atom bomb will be a weapon of choice for three reasons, the author says. Efficiency is one of them. "Killing by means of individual explosive suicide belts tends to use up a lot of recruits," he says.

Then, fundamentalist groups have to justify their existence to their fund-providers by lining up an impressive number of corpses. An atom bomb would give them the most value for money. Above all, it's the message an atom bomb would send out that would make the terrorists zero in on it.

The uranium for the bomb, Beeman believes, will "most likely come from Iran". America will also see more bombers like the failed Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad. "These individual lunatics are being encouraged by the current US administration's emphasis on individual criminal acts instead of a war on terror. They know the worst case is they'll be shut up in one of our comfortable prisons, and maybe even make parole eventually,� he says, adding: "Remember, the Obama administration has already released scores of prisoners from Guantanamo Bay who went right back into the fight against us." "Today, when his country is at war, he finds himself too old to fight and too slow to run away. This book is all he can do, and he hopes his reader will find it in himself to do more," says his website. This is one book Obama may want on his bookshelf.

Reproduced From Mail Today. Copyright 2010. MTNPL. All rights reserved.

Sonia lays foundation of Rohtang tunnel near Manali

The Hindu - Kanwar Yogendra - ‎21 minutes ago‎
Photo: PTI UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi along with Steel Minister Vir Bhadra Singh (right) and Himachal Pradesh CM Prem Kumar Dhumal during the foundation stone laying ceremony of Rohtang Pass Tunnel at South Portal in Solang Valley, Himachal Pradesh ...

Sonia asks BRO to protect Rohtang ecology during tunnel work

The Hindu - ‎5 hours ago‎
PTI PTI UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi along with Steel Minister Vir Bhadra Singh (R) and Himachal Pradesh CM Prem Kumar Dhumal during the foundation stone laying ceremony of Rohtang Pass Tunnel. Photo: PTI NAC Chairperson Sonia Gandhi today said the ...

Sonia Gandhi lays foundation stone for Rohtang Tunnel

NetIndian - ‎1 hour ago‎
National Advisory Council (NAC) Chairperson Sonia Gandhi laid the foundation stone in Manali today for the strategic 8.8 km long Rohtang Tunnel to be built at an altitude of over 3000 metres in the Pir Panjal range for an all-weather road link across ...


NAC Chairperson Sonia Gandhi today said the Rohtang tunnel construction was a "happy and historic" occasion for the nation, but asked the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to ensure that there was no ecological degradation during the drilling.
more by Sonia Gandhi - 5 hours ago - The Hindu (1 occurrences)


Biggest threat to India from north of Himalayas: Himachal CM

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Hindustan Times - ‎5 hours ago‎
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Hindustan Times - ‎5 hours ago‎
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BRO starts work on the Rohtang Tunnel

Livemint - Aman Malik - ‎4 hours ago‎
New Delhi: The Border Roads Organization (BRO) has finally begun work on the much awaited 8.8 km long Rohtang Tunnel, to be built at an altitude of over 3000 mts in the Pir Panjal range, enabling an all-weather road link across the snow-capped Rohtang ...

Preserve ecology at Rohtang: Sonia

Sify - ‎4 hours ago‎
Pradesh), June 28 (IANS) Congress president Sonia Gandhi Monday asked the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) to protect the Himalayan ecology while constructing the nearly nine-km long Rohtang tunnel in Himachal Pradesh. 'Expanding roads, constructing ...

Light of hope at the end of Rohtang tunnel

Sify - ‎6 hours ago‎
Himachal Pradesh: Snow-capped mountains, glaciers, rivers, forests, pastures, monasteries and monuments - Himachal Pradesh's twin Lahaul and Spiti valleys that share a border with Tibet have everything but communication links to tap their obvious ...

Timeline of articles

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Number of sources covering this story

Sonia lays foundation of Rohtang tunnel near Manali
‎21 minutes ago‎ - The Hindu

With press of a button, Sonia launches Rohtang tunnel construction
‎10 hours ago‎ - Economic Times

Manali-Leh road link may be used round-the-year
‎Jun 26, 2010‎ - Economic Times

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Fuel price hike was necessary, says Pranab

Times of India - ‎2 hours ago‎
MUMBAI: Justifying the recent hike in prices of petrol and diesel, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday that it was essential to meet the under-recoveries of the oil marketing companies. Interacting with media persons, Mukherjee said that ...

Pranab Mukherjee asks state governments and banks to improve credit flow

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Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Monday asked State Governments and bankers to position themselves to finance the emerging demand for credit from agriculture, manufacturing and services sectors in their respective regions. ...

India has its way on bank tax at G-20

NDTV.com - ‎5 hours ago‎
PTI, June 28, 2010 (Toronto) India's stand against any tax on banks for funding bailouts was vindicated, with the G-20 leaders agreeing that any such levy should be left to individual nations. Discussing the issue threadbare, the leaders of the ...


Interacting with media persons here, Mukherjee said that the enhancement of prices of essential commodities is always unpleasant, "but the bullet had to be bitten".
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Inflationary pressure to be moderate by mid-July: FM

Moneycontrol.com - ‎3 hours ago‎
Following the decision to drive petrol price by the market rates, government is optimistic that the private oil players will benefit from the move. The fuel price hike has also set the cash registers of oil and gas companies on fire. ...

Fuel price hike to add 0.9% to inflation: FM

NDTV.com - ‎5 hours ago‎
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday fuel price hike will have short-term inflationary impact of 0.9 per cent but that will be absorbed in due course. He expressed optimism that inflationary pressures would begin to moderate by July end. ...

Increase agri credit flow, banking access to poor: Pranab

Sify - ‎4 hours ago‎
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee Monday asked the central and western states and public sector banks to increase the agricultural credit flow, provide financial assistance to smaller industries and extend banking facilities in remote locations. ...

Hike in fuel prices will have impact on inflation: Pranab Mukherjee

India Infoline.com - ‎3 hours ago‎
Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee today said that the hike in prices of petroleum products will have some inflationary impact in the short-term but it will be absorbed in the course of time. Whether increase in inflation would prompt the Reserve Bank ...

FM asks banks to improve credit flow

indiablooms - ‎3 hours ago‎
Mumbai, June 28 (IBNS) Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said on Monday that that the Credit Deposit ratio, or the proportion of loan-assets created by banks from the deposits received, in the Central and Western Indian states are still below the ...

FM asks CMS and Bankers to Improve Credit Flow for Housing,

Press Information Bureau (press release) - ‎6 hours ago‎
Union Finance Minister Shri Pranab Mukherjee has asked the state governments and bankers to position themselves to finance the emerging demand for credit from different sectors including agriculture, manufacturing and services sectors in their ...

India Finance Minister: RBI To Consider All Aspects In July 27 Rate Meeting

NASDAQ - ‎5 hours ago‎
MUMBAI -(Dow Jones)- The Reserve Bank of India will consider all aspects at its July 27 rate-setting meeting before making a decision on increasing monetary policy rates, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said Monday. "Rates are decided by the Reserve ...

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