Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year 2011

I wish you Health... So you may enjoy each day in comfort.
I wish you the Love of friends and family... And Peace within your heart.
I wish you the Beauty of nature... That you may enjoy the work of God.
 I wish you Wisdom to choose priorities.For those things that really matter in life
 I wish you Generosity so you may share... All good things that come to you.
I wish you Happiness and Joy... And Blessings for the New Year.
I wish you the best of everything... That you so well deserve.  
With Best Regards
B S Vohra

Rebel Queen – a thorn in the crown

The film Rebel Queen tells the remarkable story of the last Sikh ruler of Lahore – a fearless Maharani who waged two wars against British rule in India. She is an inspiring figure for young Asian women today.

An Indian woman wearing a crinoline over her traditional clothes, and emeralds and pearls under her bonnet, walks in Kensington Gardens in 1861. She is the last Sikh queen of Lahore, the capital of the Punjab empire, and her name is Jindan Kaur. She died two years later, in 1863, and was buried in west London.

Maharani Jindan Kaur's life – much of which was spent raging against the British empire for cheating her out of the Punjab, then a vast country stretching from the Khyber Pass to Kashmir – is the subject of a film called Rebel Queen, which premiered at New York's International Sikh film festival and is set to be shown in the UK in February.

Her revolt began when her husband, the last Maharaja of the Punjab, died of a stroke in 1839 and the British tried to wrest the kingdom from the heir to the throne, her infant son, Duleep Singh. During her rule as regent, Jindan waged two disastrous wars against the British that led to the annexation of the Punjab. She may have made huge strategic errors due to her military inexperience and young age (she was in her early 20s), but Jindan was a fierce ruler. British historian Peter Bance describes her as a "very gutsy woman". "She stood her ground against the British . . . she actively took charge of the Punjab."

with thanks : guardian : link above for detailed news report.

Sikh pilgrimage train reaches its first destination

Anandpur Sahib, December 30

The Sikh pilgrimage train reached its first destination Anandpur Sahib an hour before its scheduled time at 7 am today.

On board, 88 passengers from an eight-month-old girl to 75-year-old elderly carried an infectious enthusiasm. Travelling in five-star facilities, they paid obeisance at Takht Keshgarh Sahib. Against the capacity of 80, 88 passengers are on board, who are from the USA, Canada, UK, Germany, France and India.

The train belongs to the Maharashtra Government, which had sent the train unoccupied from Mumbai to Delhi.

The CEO (The Luxury Holidays), Sajive Trehan, said the train was being run on the pattern of Palace on Wheels, wherein passengers’ comfort was the prime factor.

“I always wanted to run a train for the five Takhts on the pattern of Palace on Wheels. I met Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal at New York, where he agreed to the proposal. With the help of the Punjab Government, this Shan-e-Khalsa train chugged out on its maiden visit,” Sajive said.

with thanks : sikhsangat : link above for detailed report.

Luxury Sikh pilgrimage train departs from New Delhi

A luxury train covering the spiritual odyssey including the five Takhts (temporal seats) of Sikhs was flagged off from New Delhi.
The nine-day journey costs between rupees 210,000 to 450,000 per person. Despite the hefty fare, the first trip of the train witnessed full booking for all the 80 seats.
Many Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and foreign nationals from US, Canada, Germany and France boarded the train along with a good number of passengers from India.
Christened as 'A Spiritual Journey to the Gurus' Abode', it will cover the five Takhts (temporal seats) of Sikhs including Takht Keshgarh Sahib, Akal Takht, Takht Damdama Sahib, Takht Hazoor Sahib, Takht Patna Sahib.
Most of the journey and stay of the passengers will be on the luxury train apart from the section between Mumbai and Patna and the return from Patna to Delhi that would be covered by air.
Former Chairperson of National Commission for Minorities, Trilochan Singh, said the train is a welcome initiative that will boost tourism in the country.
"This is the first time that a luxury train in India has been especially organised for the tour of all the Sikh pilgrimage centres. The Sikh community has five seats (Takhts) which are called the highest seats of Sikh religion viz. Anantpur Sahib, Amritsar, Damdama Sahib, Hazoor Sahib Nanded and Patna Sahib," said Trilochan Singh.

with thanks : SIFY : ANI : TRIBUNE : link above for detailed news report.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Pics : Gurmat Samagam : Sri Guru Nanak Sewak Jatha






Organised by :
Chand Mohalla,
Gandhi Nagar,

BBC Remembrance - The Sikh Story

with thanks : BBC & YouTube

Sikh ‘Gatka' group performs in Singapore

An Indian group performing Gatka, a weapon-based martial art by Sikhs, enthralled the audience by the art of defence at a religious festival held by the Sikh community here.

‘Bir Khalsa Gatka Group' from Punjab's Taran Taran, which has been promoting the Gatka art which originated in the late 19th century out of sword practice in the British Indian Army, performed during ‘Naam Ras Kirtan Darbar,' a three-day festival concluded on Sunday. “We are responding to the increasing number of calls from the global Sikh community for reviving this Gatka art among Sikhs,” said Manmohan Singh Bhagowal, who leads the 14-men group.

with thanks : The Hindu : link above for detailed news.


Bengal-born realtor builds bridges for Sikhs to bond

He deals in transport and real estate. And on any week day he could be seen sitting in his office located at his house at Mall Road, Dum Dum conducting his business. But Jagmohan Singh Gill is not a mere businessman. He is rather a crusader out to bridge the gap between Sikhs living in Punjab and those living elsewhere, especiallly the Sikhs of Bihar, particularly those living in Sasaram.

He has also taken upon with himself the mission to spread the message and the lofty ideals of the Sikh Gurus, the message of love, and camaraderie among human beings.

An avid student of Sikh history and culture, Gill, who was both born and brought up in Kolkata, learnt Gurumukhi with his own efforts and studied the history of the religion and its culture. thoroughly.

His article ‘Sikhs living in other states than Punjab’ was read at a seminar held on November 24 and November 25 at the Institure of Sikh Studies, Chandigarh.

with thanks : indian Express : link above for detailed news.


Luxury train on Sikh pilgrimage across India sold out

Chandigarh, Dec 26 (IANS) A unique pilgrimage of Sikh shrines across India on board the Deccan Odyssey luxury train is all sold out. Never mind if the nine-day journey costs a minimum of Rs.210,000 ($4,665) per person.

Titled 'A spiritual journey to the Guru's abode' on the Deccan Odyssey, all 80 seats for the first trip of the train, which begins from Delhi Wednesday, are taken.

The journey is not only religious in nature. It will have the passengers celebrate New Year's Day at the Golden Temple, the holiest of Sikh shrines, in Amritsar. They will also be taken to historical and tourist destinations in Delhi, Amritsar, Jaipur, Agra and Patna.

'This is an exclusive, once in a lifetime journey. All 80 seats are sold out. We have a mix of passengers from the US, Canada, Germany, France and a few from India also. People on board will begin their new year at the Golden Temple complex,' Sajive Trehan, CEO of The Luxury Holidays, told IANS.

The passengers aboard the first journey of the train to the five Sikh 'Takhts' - temporal seats - will also include a Bulgarian couple who are interested in the Sikh religion.

with thanks : sify : link above for detailed news.


'Bringing Sikhs under US security scanner unfair'

Punjab Minister Manoranjan Kalia on Friday condemned the US for bringing the Sikhs of America under the security scanner yet again.

"No Indian, especially Sikh, is involved in terrorist activities in the US," Kalia, the Local Government Industry and Commerce Minister, said here.

"David Coleman Headley, who was involved in 26/11 attack on Mumbai, is an American national. But does this mean we too should bring all Americans under scanner?" he said.

with thanks : indian express : link above for detailed news.


Aurangabad artist writes holy book on rice grains

"I have written Sukhmani paath (holy chapter of a Sikh religious book) and I have sent it to the Guinness book of World records.

This would also go to the Guinness book of World records as I have got blessings from many people, I have the support of my parents as well. My wish is to take the holy book of Sai Baba to the Guinness book of World records," he said. (ANI)

with thanks : sify : link above for complete news.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Celebration of Founder's Day

Sri Guru Nanak Dev Khalsa College ,Dev Nagar,University of Delhi

Sri Guru Nanak Dev Khalsa College celebrated its Founder's day on 24th December 2010.
To mark this occasion,Kirtan Darbar (Sikh religious musical prayers ) was held.Sangat (congregation) was spell bound with divine Kirtan of Gurpreet Singh ji,(from Shimla).Kirtan performance by Students of Divinity Society of the College, added an extra dimension to the well organised Samagam( programme).
Kirtan Samagam was hugely attended by staff & students of the College.Many Sikh dignitaries & prominent members of DSGMC were also present to grace the occasion .Honourable Inderjeet Singh Monty,(an Executive Member of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee & Chairman of Sri Guru Harkrishan Public School,Tilak Nagar)& Dr.Jaswinder Singh(Principal of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Khalsa College,University of Delhi)were also among them.

Principal Dr.Man Mohan Kaur gave very emotional speech while remembering martyrdom of Sri Guru Gobind Singhji's Sahibzaadey (sons).In magical few words,she put emphasis on Guru Tegh Bahadur's (Ninth Sikh Guru) hymns :Give up your Head,but forsake not those whom you have undertaken to protect,sacrifice your life,but relinquish not your faith. Her heart throbbing speech was as nice as warming closure of the Founder's Day with serving of Langar(community food)in the college premises.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Gurmat Samagam : Sri Guru Nanak Sewak Jatha

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SGPC to give say to foreign Sikhs : Mulls panel to address Sikh concerns across globe

Even as the SGPC is gearing up for a protest outside the US Embassy in New Delhi tomorrow over the turban frisking issue, it is toying with the idea of setting up an advisory panel comprising Sikh representatives from foreign countries to deal with the problems being faced by the community abroad.

This is being seen as a move to address the concerns of Sikh community across the globe, particularly in view of the prevailing scenario over turban issue in countries like the US and France. Sikhs have a sizable population in various countries, including America, Canada, France, Argentina and New Zealand, where they are confronting various religious and social problems.

These include the issues of Sikh identity and turban issue. In France, the issue of ban on wearing Sikh turban in schools has been troubling the community while Sikh outfits there have failed to convince the lawmakers that the turban is an inseparable part of Sikh identity. A similar situation has now arisen in the US following norms by airport authorities regarding turban frisking of Sikhs.

with thanks : Tribune : link above for detailed news.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Pak denies refusal of visas to Sikh pilgrims

Islamabad, Dec 21 (PTI) Pakistan today denied reports that 300 Indian Sikh pilgrims born in Pakistan were recently denied visas.

Responding to a calling attention notice in the National Assembly or lower house of parliament, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Malik Amad Khan said he had checked with the Interior Ministry and there were no reports of 300 Sikh pilgrims being denied visas.

A protocol signed by Pakistan and India in 1974 contained the number of people from both countries who could make visits for religious purposes.

with thanks : msn : link above for detailed news.


Monday, December 20, 2010

People treated as pigs: SC

Nagaland Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee formed

Dimapur, December 18 (MExN): The Sikh Community leaders & representatives from Nagaland unanimously formed a Nagaland Sikh Gurudwara shrines in the state. In a press release S. Harjinder P S Ahluwalia, General Secretary of Nagaland Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee (NSGMC) in a press release stated that there are four major Sikh Shrines in the state which are being managed by the local management committees in Tuensang, Mokokchung, Kohima & Dimapur of which the Sikh Shrine in Dimapur is the oldest in the state which was established in early fifties and Mokokchung is the 2nd oldest Shrine which was established in early sixties. Further he also expressed that the renovation of old shrines and preserving the heritage will be the priority agenda of the committee and that the committee will meet for 2nd time in January 2011.

with thanks : sikhsangat


SGPC Told To Step Up Efforts For Sikh Marriage Provision

AMRITSAR – The Sikh clergy today asked the SGPC to intensify the efforts for the implementation of the Anand Marriage Act to facilitate a special provision for the registration of marriages performed under Sikh religious rights.

The matter came up during a meeting of the Sikh high priests at Sri Akal Takht here following correspondence in this regard from Harbans Singh Aujla of Toronto, who has been trying to get the Act implemented, and other Sikh leaders. At present marriages performed under Sikh religious rites are registered either under the Hindu Marriage Act or the Special Marriage Act. Interestingly, Pakistan has taken the lead over India by adopting the amended Anand Marriage Act in January 2008.

The Sikh high priests praised the human rights organisation, Sikhs for Justice, for making an endeavour along with the All- India Sikh Students Federation to bring the culprits of 1984 riots to book. They commended the campaign launched by these outfits to file a petition with the United Nations Human Rights Commission, seeking recognition of 1984 riots as genocide under Article 2 of the UN Convention and seeking an impartial probe into the killing of Sikhs. Akal Takht directed the Sikh community to extend its full support to the campaign.

with thanks : thelinkpaper : link above for detailed news.


Indian Sikh wedding transforms the Pasadena Convention Center

Grey skies and stubborn showers failed to dampen the vibrant suite of celebrations during a traditional Indian Sikh wedding at the Pasadena Convention Center on Saturday.

Inside the banquet hall, hundreds of guests milled about in their finest silk salwar kameez - the traditional pant-shirt suit of South and Central Asia - a jewel-toned mosaic set aflame with crimson and fuchsia turbans.

They were waiting for the groom to enter - an event that typically involves a festooned horse, a drummer and a round of exuberant dancing.

Such religious affairs are usually hosted in a Sikh Temple - but there were none in the area big enough to accommodate the 400 or so guests who had flown in from all over the world to attend, family members explained.

Careful planning and decoration - including white sheets lining the floors and hanging along the length of the walls, religious singers, as well as a special platform for the granthi (Sikh priest) and one for the Sikh's holy scripture - helped transform one of the Convention Center's bland banquet halls into a luminous, spiritual enclave.

"I always dreamed about it being this way, but I never thought it would be this big," said the bride, Asees Sethi of Pasadena, during one of the pre-wedding celebrations leading up to Saturday.

Asked how long she'd been planning it, Sethi said, "10 months - since the moment I got engaged."

Indian weddings are designed by the families, she explained, noting that everything in her's would be according to tradition - save a few elements she had insisted on.

"I really wanted to have flower girls and a ring bearer, which is definitely not normal; I wanted bridesmaids to enter before me because I wanted an element of Western culture in the ceremony," said Sethi, who was born to Indian parents in Japan but grew up in the U.S.

with thanks : pasadenastarnews : link above for detailed news story.


Celebrations of 40th anniversary of Bristol Sikh temple

A ceremony has taken place in Bristol to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the city's first Sikh temple.

More than 500 people now worship at the temple in Summerhill Road in St George. When it was founded in 1970 there were only five members.

with thanks : BBC News : link above for detailed news.


Milkha reveals how he got ‘Flying Sikh’ tag

While everyone knows who the Flying Sikh is, many wouldn’t be aware that the veteran Olympian, Milkha Singh, got this name in Pakistan in 1960 at a track event that he never wanted to contest.

“I didn’t want to go to Pakistan to attend the games as my parents were killed there during riots after the Partition. However, I was persuaded by the then Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru to go,” said the veteran athlete, adding that it was there he got the title of Flying Sikh after he defeated the Pakistan champion Abdul Khaliq in the 200-metre race.

Addressing a gathering here today after receiving the Award of Excellence from the Editor-in-Chief of The Tribune, Raj Chengappa, at a function organised by the Rotary District 3080, an emotional Milkha Singh said: “Nehruji told me to bury the past and go to Pakistan”. “The then PM felt that since Pakistan had extended an invitation for the event in a spirit of friendship, it was imperative that I represented the nation,” said Milkha.

Recalling his journey, he said: “I went in a jeep decked up with flowers. Once we crossed the Wagah border and began our 20-km ride to Lahore, we saw people lined up on either side of the road to cheer us”.

About the race, Milkha recounted that some Urdu paper had then given a headline, 'Khaliq ki takkar Milkha se- Pakistan vs India'. “On the day of the race, I was told that around 60,000 persons had assembled at the Lahore stadium, including almost 20,000 burqa-clad women. Before the race began, the mullahs (priests) came to conduct prayers and bless Khaliq”, Milkha said. “I stopped one of them and sought blessings from him by saying that I am too a man of God (khuda ka banda),” he added.

He said when the race began Khaliq took an initial lead as he was a 100m sprinter. My strength was my stamina and I overtook him after 150 yards and won the race by around seven yards”, he said, adding that his timing was 20.7 sec, a new world record.

He said after the race, General Ayub (the then Pakistan President) came up to him and said: “Milkha you did not run, you flew.” “And that’s how I got my name”, he told the audience.

with thanks : tribune : link above for detailed news.


Friday, December 17, 2010

Take up turban issue with US through diplomatic channels, SGPC told

Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) chief Paramjit Singh Sarna shot off a letter to US President Barack Obama on Thursday, expressing concern over the recent incident of Indian diplomat H S Puri being asked to remove his turban at a Texas airport.

On the other hand, Shiromani Panthic Council head Manjit Singh Calcutta asked the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) not to hold a protest planned for December 23 in front of the US Embassy in New Delhi.

with thanks : IndianExpress : link above for detailed news.


Thursday, December 16, 2010

Yogi's widow sues Sikh business managers in Oregon

EUGENE -- The widow of Yogi Bhajan has sued the managers overseeing the businesses of the Sikh community her husband founded, including Golden Temple, a longtime Eugene natural foods company.

Golden Temple, which previously had annual revenue of $125 million, sold its cereal division in May. It still operates Yogi Tea, which has 50 employees in Springfield and 100 employees in Europe.

The widow, Bibiji Inderjit Kaur Puri of Los Angeles, alleged that her husband's most trusted advisers drew up false documents and backdated them to make it appear as if he had approved what she described as their abandonment of orthodox Sikh practices, their takeover of the community's businesses and the exclusion of his family members from the management board.

Bibiji alleged that once they secured their power, members of the management board Unto Infinity, which includes Golden Temple CEO Kartar Singh Khalsa enriched themselves and Golden Temple managers at the expense of the Sikh Dharma religious community. Gary Roberts, Unto Infinity's attorney, did not respond to a request for comment Monday, but he has denied similar allegations in other lawsuits.

The widow's lawsuit, which was filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court in Portland, alleges that Unto Infinity authorized raises and perks for its members, including boosting Khalsa's salary from $125,000 in 2002 to $850,000 in 2008.

with thanks : kgw : link above for detailed news.


Spare the turban: SGPC to protest at US embassy

Outraged at the turban becoming the object of intense searches at American airports, Sikhs led by its top representative body Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) will protest in front of the US embassy in Delhi on December 23.

There have been several incidents of Sikhs being told to take off the turban at airport security lines for a special check. The most recent case has been that of the Indian envoy to the United Nations, Hardeep Singh, whose turban was patted down at the Houston airport in America.

SGPC chief Avtar Singh Makkar said the body would request members and the general public to reach Delhi for the planned event to raise awareness about this 'humiliation of Sikhs' for wearing the turban.

with thanks : Indian Express : Link above for detailed news.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ahead by a century

Preparations are underway to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Abbotsford's Gur Sikh Temple - the oldest building of its kind in North America

This new year will be a particularly special one for Abbotsford when its Sikh population and the larger community unite to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the Gur Sikh Temple located on South Fraser Way.

Satwinder Bains, director of the UFV Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies, said the historic temple, or gurdwara, is a testament to the pride, vision and community commitment of early Sikh immigrants.

A designated national historic monument, the temple was completed in 1911 by struggling pioneers.

The oldest, and longest standing building of its kind in North America, it is the only gurdwara to have a national historic designation outside of India and Pakistan.

with thanks : abbotsfordtimes : link above for detailed news.


Cruise for Patna Saheb on cards

PATNA: The state capital seems to have no dearth of innovative ideas aimed at attracting tourists and local revellers. After revolving and floating restaurants, a cruise will very soon be set afloat to ferry tourists from Patna collectorate ghat to Patna Saheb.

Patna saheb is famous for Sikh pilgrim centre Harmandir ji, the birthplace of tenth Sikh guru, guru Gobind singh. It has been attracting lakhs of tourists from Punjab, its adjoining areas and overseas for years.

A river route to carry these tourists as well as local visitors will be opened soon to save the tourists from traffic jams that usually greet the passengers throughout the road route to Patna Saheb (also known as Patna city).

Director tourism, Bihar, Vinay Kumar said, "We are in touch with shipping cruise companies based in Howrah. We will try to start this cruise service as soon as possible, which will be a huge relief for the travellers."

According to him, they are looking for smaller vessels that can carry between 50 to 150 passengers. In between the route, there will be two to three stoppage points. In the beginning we will start with one vessel and depending upon the response of people, we will soon introduce another vessel, added Kumar. The fares will also be quite economical.

With thanks : Times of India : link above for detailed news.


Monday, December 13, 2010

A luxury train trip across Sikh takhts

A luxury train will carry the devout and sightseers to four of the country’s five Sikh takhts, with a flight to the fifth takht on the ninth day completing the circuit.

The Deccan Odyssey, taken on charter from the Maharashtra government, will make its first trip from Delhi on December 29, so that passengers can spend the New Year at the Golden Temple. “A Spiritual Journey to the Guru’s Abode” will cover Kiratpur Sahib, Anandpur Sahib (site of the takht Keshgarh Sahib), Amritsar (Akal Takht Sahib), Bathinda (Damdama Sahib), Jaipur, Agra, Nanded (Hazur Sahib) and Mumbai, from where passengers will take a flight to Patna on January 5, visit Patna Sahib, and fly back to Delhi the next day, Luxury Trains and Luxury Holidays CEO Sajivve Trehaan told The Indian Express. The Amritsar leg will include a trip to the Wagah border and back.

“The USP is the New Year at the Golden Temple. We have sold 60 of the train’s capacity of around 80 seats,” Trehaan said from London, where his company is wooing NRI passengers.

The train’s 21 coaches include two with two presidential suites each, called Platinum Class, for which the daily fare is $1,250 for single passengers and $1,060 per head when shared by two. Forty rooms in 10 other coaches have gold class ($920 single, $730 shared) and silver class ($750, $585) seats. The train includes two dining cars, a spa car, a lodge and a business centre-cum-conference hall.

With thanks : IndianExpress : link in headline above for more detailed news.


The fare will cover the meals; the Taj Group will take care of the catering.

Indian envoy insulted, asked to remove turban

After Indian Ambassador to the US Meera Shankar was subjected to a pat-down at an airport in the USA, another Indian envoy has been humiliated in America. India's permanent representative at the United Nations, Hardeep Puri, was frisked and asked to remove his turban.Puri, a Sikh, was asked to remove his turban at the airport in Austin, Texas three weeks ago where he had gone for a lecture. He was asked to remove the turban even though the airport security had been told of his diplomatic status.Puri refused to remove his turban and the matter was resolved but only after local police intervened.

The Government has already lodged a formal complaint with US authorities.

The incident involving Puri is the third such incident in the last three months in which Indian envoys have been signalled out for intrusive security checks.

Earlier, Neera Shankar was pulled out from an airport security line and patted down by an American security agent in Mississippi despite being told of her diplomatic status. The incident took place on December 4 at the Jackson-Evers International Airport where saree-clad Shankar was about to board a flight to Baltimore after attending the Mississippi State University's programme.

The USA had on December 11 tendered an official apology to India and Meera over her pat down by an American security agent. The US government said that Meera's pat down was not meant to be a put down, while promising a review of airport screening guidelines.

William Burns, a senior State Department official, personally conveyed his regrets and promised Meera a review of airport screening guidelines.

The apology was issued after External Affairs minister SM Krishna, in line with public opinion and opposition protests warned that US diplomats, too, would be frisked in India if such incidents recur.

with thanks : IBNLive &


Sunday, December 12, 2010

FBI chief regrets remarks about Sikh Americans

FBI director Robert S. Mueller has apologised to a Sikh American civil rights and advocacy organization for remarks linking Sikh Americans to terrorism at an intelligence conference in October. The apology came in response to a letter of concern from the Sikh American Legal Defence and Education Fund (SALDEF) over a report in The Washington Times about statements made by Mueller.

"I would like to apologize for, and clarify, any misunderstanding that the account in this newspaper story may have caused," his office said in a letter to.

"The statement cited was intended to reiterate the FBI's responsibility for, and commitment to, deterring and investigating terrorist threats and activity. I can assure you it was not meant to single out any specific community, including Sikh-Americans."

Recognizing SALDEF's partnership with the FBI, the letter said: "The FBI and you, representing Sikh Americans and communities across the country, have worked closely together and developed an ongoing dialogue on a variety of issues of mutual interest,".

with thanks : Hindustan Times : link in headline for detailed news.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Daswndh to help others !


Plz forwrd this mail to all ur contacts and help generously 4 the cause. Daswndh can't be only donated in Gurdwara Golaks. Golaks r overflowing but management comitees will not part wth a rupee to help the needy.Their only interest is in MRBLE and GOLD.Gurdwaras are being laided with MARBLE and GOLD and then this will be the cause for all the disputes. We r supposed to AKLI KICHE DAAN -TO DONATE WITH WISDOM. YOUNGSTERS SHOULD take the initiative and bring the movement of change.

09815439834 ; A/C NO MANJEET SINGH SBI 11354264685


Monday, December 6, 2010

Kawal's Help drive - sad demise

Sat Shri Akal,

All the respected people I Papinder Kaur would like to thanks you a lot for helping me in Kawal's Medical Drive. Yesterday when I was searching something I came across the SikhsIndia blog where we had request for help, is still there. I was not able to post the changes.

I would request you to post in the sikhsindia blog that Kawal has passed away on 19th September 2010 after a long fighting journey of one year and thirteen months.


We are really very sorry to know about the sad demise of Kawal ji. Donno if we could do anything for the departed soul. We had uploaded on 29th January, 2010, asking : CAN YOU HELP / ASSIST HER IN ANY WAY ?

with best regards

B S Vohra

Drug addiction blights the Indian state of Punjab

There is growing concern in India about the rapid rise in drug addiction cases in Punjab, one of the country's wealthiest states.

The main university in the region has claimed that 70% of young Punjabi men are hooked on drugs or alcohol.

The problem is at its worst along the border with Pakistan where heroin originating from Afghanistan is smuggled into the country.

The BBC's Mark Dummett reports from Amritsar.


with thanks : BBC News


Mughal Emperor Zafar’s descendant to visit Pak Sikh shrines to seek forgiveness

Attari, Dec.6: A descendant of former Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar has said that she will go to Pakistan to seek forgiveness in Sikh shrines there. “My life has changed after I had visited the Golden Temple in 2004 to seek forgiveness for the atrocities committed by my ancestors – the Mughal Emperors on Sikh gurus,” said Sultana Begum, the great grand daughter-in-law of Bahadur Shah Zafar.

Sultana Begum has been living a life of penury on the pavements of Kolkata.

She told ANI on Monday before leaving for Pakistan via the Attari-Wagah border that she was getting Rs.400 as pension earlier, but the government had now raised it to Rs.6000 per month.

She also claimed that President Pratibha Devisingh Patil had given her assurances about providing her with a house.

She said that after her return from Pakistan she would meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi and the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh.

Sultana has led a harsh life, especially after the death of her husband, Prince Mirza Mohammad Badar Bukht in 1980.

She was married to him for 15 years. Badar Bukht was the son of Prince Jamshed Bukht and great grandson of Prince Jawan Bukht who was son of Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar and Crown Queen Zeenat Mahal.

with thanks : dailyindia : link in headline above for detailed news.


Madonna receives multi-million dollar gift from Sikh

Members of the Madonna University community had more than a million reasons to be grateful this Thanksgiving, thanks to the generosity of area philanthropist Deepinder Uppal.

A professor of English and communication at Southwestern Michigan College with an upbringing in Sikhism and a childhood spanning the globe, Uppal was first enlisted to mentor Dean Adkins, director of major gifts and gift planning at Livonia's Madonna University, in order for Adkins to better understand the growing Sikh presence in Southeast Michigan philanthropy. A frequent visitor to campus, Uppal became strongly acquainted with Madonna values and the serendipitous possibilities in philanthropy at Madonna University.

“When I heard Dean talk about how there were specific planned giving instruments that could not only help me solve some financial issues in my life right now but also could simultaneously create an irrevocable planned gift to do good, to further Madonna's vision, I was all for it,” Uppal said. “These types of charitable solutions had never been presented to me before.” After discussing various options with Adkins, Uppal recently recorded a multi-million dollar intention with the University in the form of a deferred gift.

Uppal teaches and believes that religion should be a unifying concept, not a point of division. Founded in Punjab in the 15th century, Sikhism is a monotheistic religion that, today, ranks as the fifth largest religion in the world, with some 20 million followers.

“This is an opportunity to promote a dialogue between two religions,” Uppal said. “I feel I am doing my part to live out the sentiments one may find in Wand Kay Shako,” the teaching of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev that one should share one's wealth with others in the community to profoundly inspire and support society.

with thanks : hometownlife : link in headline for detailed news.


PM may bring up ban on turbans with Sarkozy

NEW DELHI: As French President Nicolas Sarkozy landed in Delhi on Sunday, government sources indicated that the contentious issue of Sikh turbans in France would again be taken up with the French side. The government is expected to politely convey to Sarkozy how strongly India feels about the issue when he holds delegation-level talks with PM Manmohan Singh on Monday.

Sarkozy had an informal meeting over dinner with Singh after landing in Delhi from Agra on Sunday evening. In the past too, Singh has taken up the issue with Sarkozy and while the president has displayed understanding of the situation, Sikh groups continue to believe they are being discriminated against by the French government. Currently, it is difficult for a Sikh to acquire any identification-related document if he doesn't get himself photographed without removing his turban.

In his September 2008 summit talks in Paris, Singh had emphasized to Sarkozy that the turban was "a very essential part of the Sikh way of life". Sarkozy had then said that he had an "open mind" on the issue. Again in July 2009, after the French National Day celebrations, Singh had handed over a "non-official" document to Sarkozy on how to handle the problem. Sarkozy had then assured that there was no ban in France on Sikhs wearing turban.

With thanks : Times of India : link in headline for detailed news.


Dynamic Sikh Personality : Principal Dr.Man Mohan Kaur

Dr.Man Mohan Kaur,the dynamic principal of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Khalsa College,University of Delhi,Dev Nagar,New Delhi,India;started her career as a school teacher.She then joined Mata Sundri College, University of Delhi as a Lecturer and soon became a Reader. She is Principal since 1st November 2005. She is constantly engaged in evolving and upgrading infrastructure and teaching methodologies in the college. Her emphasis is on the welfare and upliftment of her students by empowering them with contemporary knowledge systems and skills, thereby enabling them to take their place in the competitive, globalised world that is awaiting them.

Within short span of time, she has taken the college to remarkable heights. Under her excellent guidance the college has earned a reputation for excellence in academics and in extra-curricular activities. She is a supporting pillar and a nurturing head for her students and for her entire staff, both teaching and administrative.

She has completely dedicated her life for the social cause. Every year she arranges free medical check-ups, blood donation camps and career counseling workshops for her students .This year she motivated and enrolled many students as volunteers for the Commonwealth Games (hosted in Delhi from October 4-14, 2010)in collaboration with the Delhi Government. A fountainhead of optimism and determination herself, she advises all to spurn negativity for a positive and hopeful attitude. She actively encouraged students’ participation in Delhi city cleanliness drive and sent volunteers for the foreign delegation.

She has done her graduation and post-graduation in Mathematics from Indraprastha College, University of Delhi and training in Education from Central Institute of Education,DU.She earned her PhD Degree and Post Doctoral honours from Delhi University. Since last 34 years (approximately)she has written, presented and published several research papers in National & International journals in the subject of her expertise- Mathematics- and participated in various national and international seminars and workshops.

Her role model in life is her grandfather, late Sardar Hira Singhji, who is an inspirational figure for her as well as for her siblings. It was his vision and encouragement that strongly motivated her to achieve academic targets successfully and to lead a pious life. The central philosophy of Dr. Man Mohan Kaur's life is based on practising three primary pillars of Sikhism: Kirat Karo (earn an honest living );Wand Ke Chhako (to share) and Naam Jappo (receiting God’s Name).In all circumstances of life, she always remembers the existence of Akal purakh (Almighty).

Till her last breath, her one and only wish is to pray, to practice the path of humanity and to spread the message of the Sikh Gurus in order to gain a meaningful life. Therefore she regularly conducts Kirtan Gurbani (Religious Music) competitions in the college to inculcate Sikh principles among the new generation of Sikh students. Her humble submission & motto is "Inhi Ki Kirpa Ke Saje Hum Hai".

She is fully convinced that whatever she has achieved in life;it is with the grace and blessings of the eternal Guru "Sri Guru Granth Sahib".

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Prem Chopra in Chandigarh with Dr.Kitty Singh:

Prem Chopra;a legend villain of Bollywood was in Chandigarh today along with his other co-stars Rahul Dev & Rann Vijay( Famous TV Personality from MTV Roadies) for the shooting of his upcoming Punjabi Movie "Dharti"in which he is playing a role of King (Politician)maker.He also visited Panchkula & Mohali's community centre.

Dr.Kitty Singh(wife of famous Eye Surgeon Dr.Gurjit Singh in Chandigarh)had lunch with Prem Chopra in his Vanity Van;reported that Prem Chopra was overwhelmed with the hospitality of Sikhs in Chandigarh.Next week,he’ll again visit to Chandigarh to complete the shooting of the second schedule of the film.

A Beautiful Site But No One To Appreciate It

Please DOUBLE CLICK to view it. It is about Guru Tegh Bahadur Memorial, spread over 11.5 acres of land and constructed on GT Road (NH-1) at Singhu border is built at an estimated cost of Rs 25 crore. We must include this spot for a regular visit.

With thanks : Hindustan Times : Link in headline above.


Pakistan: The Taliban and the Endangered Sikhs of Peshawar

In Peshawar's noisy and manic Dabgari bazaar, bearded men weaving in and out of the curbside stores are a ubiquitous sight. (There are few women in the market). Most of them wear round, white Pashtun hats, a fixture in these parts. But there are a substantial number of merchants who, though also bearded and dressed in the traditional shalwar kameez, are adorned with the intricately wound and colorful turbans of those who profess the Sikh religion. Many of them live just a few streets away from the market, where the noise and rubbish-strewn streets fall away and are replaced by a warren of winding narrow alleyways, swept clean, and lined by brick homes, many of which despite being caked in decades of dust and disrepair still maintain a haughty grandeur. This is Jogan Shah, the Sikh neighborhood of Peshawar.

Sikhs and Hindus are tiny and embattled communities in Pakistan. As small, non-Muslim populations, especially in the volatile, religiously conservative northwest, they were easy prey for the Taliban. That's why the population of Jogan Shah has spiked in recent years. Sikhs like Darsha Singh, displaced from his village of Orakzai in the war-ravaged tribal territories further northwest, have sought refuge with their co-religionists in Peshawar, which now hosts some 500 families, the largest Sikh population in Pakistan.

With thanks : : link in headline above for DETAILED REPORT.


Friday, December 3, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Message - Sri Akal Takht Sahib - dated 1.4.06

Hukamnama - Sri Akal Takht Sahib - dated 16.3.98

Temples 'breaking the Sikh code' on meat and alcohol

Some gurdwaras in the UK are going against their religion by serving meat and alcohol on their premises, according to an association of Sikh followers.

The UK Sangat, an association of Sikh followers, has started a national campaign to stop what it says is the violation of the basic principles of Sikhism.

Some Sikhs have protested, stopping one gurdwara in Edinburgh and one in Essex from going against the teachings.

UK Sangat said there were at least another 15 temples in Britain flouting the rules, which they planned to approach.

The Sikh religion forbids the use of alcohol and other intoxicants.

Sikhs are also not allowed eat meat - the principle is to keep the body pure.

All gurdwaras are supposed to follow the Sikh code, known as the Akal Takht Sandesh, which comes from the highest Sikh authority in India.


The detailed news can be viewed with thanks to BBC News : link in headline above.

SikhsIndia - spreading awareness.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sikh cab driver, mistaken for Muslim, attacked in California

A Sikh cab driver in Northern California was attacked after assailants mistook him for a Muslim.

Harbhajan Singh was attacked by two men, who shouted profanities and called him Osama Bin Laden. He escaped when a woman with the attackers intervened and put herself between them, reports Associated Press (AP).

Singh believes the men intended to kill him because he wears a turban.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has been approached by The Council on American-Islamic Relations to investigate if the attack was racially motivated.

with thanks :

Amritsar-Toronto flight to resume soon

New Delhi The government on Tuesday decided to soon resume the Amritsar-Toronto Air India flight, the discontinuation of which since October has caused a lot of problems to frequent non-resident Indian fliers to Punjab.

The assurance to restore the flight was given by Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel to Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who headed a SAD-BJP delegation to lodge strong protest over the cancellation of the flight.

The national carrier had withdrawn the service as part of cost - cutting measures and on the ground that the airlines was making huge losses in the sector.

with thanks : expressindia : link in headline for detailed news.


Hundreds to stay warm this winter, thanks to Tracy Sikhs

TRACY -- Hundreds of residents braved the cold and rain Saturday morning to get a free coat for winter. The American Sikh Community spent $75,000 this year to offer more than 15,000 winter items such as coats, gloves, scarves, socks, hats and blankets.

The coordinator's for Saturday's event was the Sikh community in Tracy. Lines grew to more than 400 people deep, and an estimated 2,000 people were expected to benefit from the day's event that was held at the Larch Clover Community Center. The group plans to hold additional warm-clothing giveaways in Manteca, Modesto and Turlock, the dates of which have yet to be announced.

"This feels good to be able to help the community and see the small kids be able to pick out a new coat," said Karnail Singh Sandhu, one of the event's coordinators. "This may be the only coat these children have this year. We are doing this in remembrance of Sahibzada Zorawar Singh, age 9, and Sahibzada Fateh Singh, age 7, who were kidnapped (in the year 1705) and put into a cold and damp room with nothing to keep them warm. They were tortured and killed because of their religious convictions. Today, we honor them and give warm clothing in remembrance."

Entire families showed up and stood in line for almost an hour to pick out a free coat. The largest family to show had 10 members, with the average family numbering five. Ages ranged from newborn to a woman in her late 80s. All seemed grateful for the warm clothingand blankets.

with thanks : contracostatimes : link in headline for more details.


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Vast Sikh temple in Kent is 'largest outside India'

You can view the BBC News Video from this link :


SGPC sends off group of 58 Sikh devotees to Bangladesh

AMRITSAR: SGPC (Shriomani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee) here Monday send off the group of 58 Sikh devotees including 15 females first time to Bangladesh to pay obeisance at various Sikh shrines and observe the birth anniversary of founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Dev.
In a release issued here SGPC stated that the group of Sikh devotees during their visit to Bangladesh would reach at Dhaka on December 3 to observe the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev at Gurdwara (Sikh shrine) Memon Singh. Sikh devotees after paying obeisance at various Sikh shrines in Bangladesh would return to India on December 9.
with thanks : punjabnewsline : link in headline for details.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

'Golden Temple kitchen busiest'

CHANDIGARH: Food is said to be a great unifier, and a documentary film appears to second this. According to Holy Kitchens production— an initiative of an Indian-American Chef Vikas Khanna, who is rolling out a series of films to tie together the metaphysical meaning of food in religion with the real world experience of sharing food in a spiritual context — Golden Temple has the busiest kitchen in the world.

Khanna is an award winning chef, author TV personality and restaurateur based in New York City.

The first in the series is a documentary 'True Business', which takes its inspiration from first Sikh master Guru Nanak's message of Sacha Sauda, from where the concept of 'langar' or common kitchen originated.

As the story, Guru Nanak's father had given him Rs 20 to start a business but was surprised to see his son distributing food to the poor, bought with the money meant to start an enterprise. On being asked that why did he do this, Guru Nanak is supposed to have replied that this was ''Sacha Sauda, True Business''.

With thanks : times of India : link in headline above for detailed news.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Be proud, very proud!!

Have a look at the BBC documentary on Sikh representation in the Indian forces in the 2 World Wars. Very well documented and presented, you will feel your chest swell up with pride with this bit of re-told history. And, even more so, if you are a Sikh!

Part 2 of the documentary

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Martyrdom day on Dec 10 ?

Can't we pre-decide the dates of Gurupurab's as well Sangrand & other important days. It seems, we are loosing the unity, just due to the differences in the leaders of different areas. Delhi is observing 24th Nov as the Martyrdom day whereas Punjab will have it on 10th December. A part of the community is arranging Samagam's on one day & the rest of the community on any other day. We must do something to fix the dates of all the historical days.


Not today, martyrdom day on Dec 10: Akal Takht

A day before Sikhs were to observe the martyrdom day of Guru Teg Bahadur on November 24, Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh announced that the day must be marked on December 10, leading to confusion among the devotees.

“I have decided that the day should be observed on December 10. The SGPC will observe the day on December 10,” the Jathedar said, adding that he had received various requests from the world over to change the date.

However, he said “if some Sikh bodies or institutions have made arrangements for the day’s ceremonies” for November 24, they could go ahead with the celebrations. The others should celebrate on the date being announced by the Akal Takht.

Earlier, the SGPC and the Punjab government had mentioned November 24 as holiday on the Guru’s martyrdom.

with thanks : Indian Express : link in headline above for more detailed news.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Sikhs protest govt decision to bar 'Palki' procession in Pak

LAHORE: Sikh elders have protested a decision by Pakistani authorities to bar the community from organising the 'Palki' procession at Gurdwara Janamsthan in Nankana Sahib to mark the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak.

Authorities said their decision to bar the procession, which goes from Gurdwara Janamsthan to seven other gurdwaras in Guru Nanak's birthplace, was based on security concerns.

Sikhs were not allowed to organise the procession last year too.

with thanks : TOI : link in headline above for detailed news.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Remove Indo-Pak border restrictions: Sikh pilgrims

The border restrictions between Pakistan and India should be abolished for peace and prosperity in the region, said a group of Sikh pilgrims from India. Over 4,000 Sikh pilgrims reached Pakistan by special trains through the Wagah border Friday to attend the birth anniversary celebrations of Guru Nanak, the first guru of Sikhism.

Sikh pilgrims told the media at Gurdwara Dera Sahib in Lahore Saturday that people of Pakistan were peaceful and foreign elements were involved in all terror activities, the News International reported Sunday.

with thanks : Hindustan times : link in headline above for detailed news.


Sat Guru Nanak Pargateya.......Miti Dhund Jag Chanan Hoya.

Guru Nanak dev ji de prakash purab di lakh lakh wadhai hove ji......