Those who know how to feign defeat win the battle in the end. Rise, oh Khalsa – the beloved of the Guru, your brothers in Sirhind are shouting out at you.
Khalsa Jee, the war has begun, raise the sword to your chest and let it blaze.
Bhai Jagtar Singh Hawara & his fellow inmate’s message to the Sikh Panth & commemoration of the Shaheeds of the June 1984 holocaust.
The beloved and respected of the Guru, Khalsa Jee. Please accept the Khalsa greeting,
Vaheguru ji ka Khalsa – the Khalsa belongs to the wonderous enlightener
Vaheguru ji ki Fateh – all victories belong to the wonderous enlightener
Khalsa Jee – the wheel of time carries on forward without any interruption, in its own carefree manner. A despot government or the biggest power of the world cannot influence this passage of time with its own ideology or might. Yes, those who know how to adapt to the times they live in, they become truly successful. That individual, nation or religion, that develops this flexibility to change, succeeds. Often, these power-mad governments, in their futile attempts to change destiny, carry out heinous crimes, such as massacres, genocides and holocausts. In the preceding years to follow – these acts of inhumanity create pains of anguish in the communities that are victimised. Khalsa Jee, I would like to temporarily overlook our glorious past and rather talk about the present day. To talk of the period from 1978 to the world we live in now and how the Hindustan government has targeted our elders, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters and defenceless children – in order to offer my humble obeisance to these great souls.
Khalsa Jee – each community contributed to the country’s successful independence (1947). The land blessed by the Guru’s – the Punjab, and the imbued Punjabis, and especially the Gadhar Party made significant contributions and sacrifices in this struggle. Those who were oppressed for many years in Hindustan – those who were treated inhumanely, the poor and untouchables (scheduled castes), were all given a ray of hope of experiencing new freedoms in independence. Although the Sikhs are a minority community, they outnumbered the sacrifices of the majority community in the movement to free India – outweighing their numerical strength, manifold. The Hindu community being the majority population in the realigned ‘India,’ became the power brokers of the county. In independence, this zealot Hindu government started to vent their hatred of the Sikh community, whereas the Sikhs should have been given their rights. Throughout India the government sent out a circular stating that Sikhs are a community of career criminals and that they should be monitored carefully at all times. These cowards, who ran from the battleground of freeing India through an armed struggle, starting spewing their hatred for the Sikhs, saying Sikhs are like poisonous snakes and that they should be oppressed to contain them. This circular was sanctioned by the first Home Minister of India – Vallabhai Patel. In the Dharam Yudh Morcha (campaign for rights) the Sikh community peacefully campaigned for its rights, in response to this, the tyrannical Indian government attacked the Sri Darbar Sahib (Golden Temple – the most revered Gurdwara) and Sri Akaal Takht Sahib (Immortal throne – the Sikh Parliament), which are more valued than life itself by Sikhs around the globe. The Sri Akaal Takht was attacked with tanks and heavy artillery. In November 1984, in Delhi and many states across India, Sikhs were murdered en masse in organised pogroms. In the preceding decades the Sikhs were targeted for ethnic cleansing, in order to destroy the Sikh identity – in which hundreds of thousands of the elderly, mothers, sisters, youth, and infants were murdered. They were murdered in massacres, and their bodies were piled high – the whole Sikh Panth (nation) is aware of this recent history.
Khalsa Jee – why did these murders occur? Who are the offenders of these war crimes? How can we survive future pogroms of ethnic cleansing? These issues and other matters of serious concern have been mishandled by the heirs of power, or those who have captured power through force or monetary clout. The solutions they have self-created, are opposed to our roots, impossible to achieve, and are only solutions in name. Today we can clearly see these solutions are having no effect – due to which, the Panth is on a downward spiral.
Our Panths misfortune is that to date, we have not been able to get any government to recognise the ethnic cleansing and criminalisation of the Sikh community in India. With this recognition, a political voice of support could have been added to the campaigns of Sikhs living outside of India, to achieve the rights and freedoms of Sikhs. This would have helped hold the Indian government to account for its war crimes and genocide of the Sikhs, in the International Criminal Court.
Khalsa Jee – like every year, this month of June reminds us of the massacres of the Sikhs, but it will routinely come and go – no one can stop this passage of time. This time around as well, we will recall on good and bad memories. On a Sikh nationalistic level, like each year, resolutions will be passed and great proclamations made. The powerful leaders, the learned, academics, appointed leadership and the SGPC (Shromani Gurdwara Parbhandak Committee – Committee of Gurdwaras throughout Punjab & Haryana) will all deliver fire-brand speeches. Our congregations will come in large numbers to Gurdwaras, bathe in the Sarovars (water tanks) and food will be served in the Langars (free kitchens). They will listen to speeches, go home and eventually forget what they heard until next year around. Thus until next year, the outcome will be money spent and programs held with no forward planning or implementation of practical solutions. This cycle has gone on for the past two decades. The calculation of what the Panth has gained and lost is not available to the Sikh leadership or Sikhs. Who then will fight our Panth’s rights and freedoms? Who is our saviour?
Khalsa Jee, today our Panth’s condition has become that uncertain and been made to become uncertain, that we are in doubt of whether we are Sikhs of the Guru – who sacrificed so much for us – or are we someone else? Oh beloved Sikhs of the Guru, until we live in accordance to the teachings of the Gurus, we will be downtrodden and defenceless. We will remain unsuccessful as a Panth in our fight for our rights and will remain a joke in the eyes of those opposed to the Sikhs. The Panth’s success is dependent upon practical solutions, there is no other second option. Our internal factions and disagreements of minor points become a massive boulder in our path to success. Those in power in Delhi and their administration want exactly this – they don’t want us to unify and are relentlessly beating us down. So Khalsa Jee, the biggest need of the moment is that those here and abroad, who are the Sikhs of Guru Nanak, should all unite for the betterment of the Panth’s collective interests, forgetting their differences, coming together in the discipline of Bhakti (devotion) and Shakti (temporal power) under the auspice of the Sri Akaal Takht Sahib. The Guru commands us,
Come and join together, my brethen; dispel your sense of duality and let yourselves be lovingly absorbed in the Lord. Let yourselves be joined to the Name of the Lord; become Guru Oriented, spread out your mat and sit together.
(Sri Guru Arjan Dev Jee, 1185)
To be continued…