| Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia | 21 Nov 2016 | Asia Samachar |
The Malaysian Gurdwaras Council (MGC) has called up the Sri Akal Takht to take action against parties placing other scriptures at par with the Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS).
In a strongly-worded letter to the Sikh body based in Amritsar, the Kuala Lumpur based MGC has urged for ‘visible and concrete steps’ to push back attempts to place Dasam Granth (DG) at par with the SGGS.
The letter, dated 15 Nov 2016 and addressed directly to Akal Takht Jathedar Singh Sahib Giani Gurbachan Singh, was sent via email last week.
“As this matter is becoming very serious to the extent that now some elements are challenging the status of Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) by placing DG on par with SGGS Ji, and this act poses a direct challenge to the Sikh religion and Panth.
“This has resulted in increasing disunity among the Sikhs. Up till now, Singh Sahib Ji has not taken any visible and concrete steps to overcome this issue, which in fact is your prime responsibility,” reads the English translation of the letter.
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In a telephone conversation, MGC President Jagir Singh told Asia Samachar: “I’ve spoken to the personal assistant of the Jathedar with regards to the letter.”
A copy of the letter, which has also been mailed to all gurdawaras in Malaysia, was sighted by Asia Samachar. MGC represents 108 gurdwara in Malaysia.
DG has been a source of heated debates in Sikhs circles for many years now. It revolves around a compilation which some Sikhs believe are the compositions of Guru Gobind Singh, while others believe they may not entirely have been penned by the tenth Guru of the Sikhs.
In Malaysia, the issue came to a head in April 2016 when the MGC requested the Kuala Lumpur-based Sri Guru Granth Sahib Academy (SGGS Academy) from calling off a DG-related programme for potentially violating the Sikh code of conduct.
The Academy went ahead with the programme. However, most gurdaras have declined permission to the Academy for subsequent attempts to hold DG-related programmes.
In the subsequent months, major Sikh organisations in Malaysia, including MGC, Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia (SNSM) and Khalsa Diwan Malaysia (KDM), have emphasised the importance of mantaining the sanctity of SGGS by ensuring no other granth is placed at par with it.
The MGC letter to the Akal Takht is entitled ‘Parkash of other granth on par with Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji’.
It noted that MGC’s executive committee meeting on 5 Nov 2016 had ‘decided with great deal of distress’ to write to the Akal Takht Jathedar on the DG issue.
In the four-page letter written in Punjabi, with an English translation attached, the MGC highlighted the recent Hindu festival of Navratri in which the Delhi Gurdwara Parbandhak Commiittee (DGPC) ‘openly and for the first time’ allowed the katha of Chandi di Vaar at Gurdwara Sahib Bangla Sahib with Durga Dewi Parchar done and telecast live.
“This act injured the feelings of the Sikhs both locally and abroad and have angered them, and caused confusion,” it said.
MGC expressed its regret that Akal Takht had not taken any concrete steps to calm the situation and to arrest growing disunity.
“We hereby wish to remind that Singh Sahib Ji may be held responsible for this state of affairs and the likely harm arising from it.
“Singh Sahib Ji should be aware that your in-action has resulted in undermining the supremacy and the status of Akal Takht Sahib,” it said.
In the letter, MGC reiterated that Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs, had ‘given the Gurta Gadhdi only to SGGS Ji’.
“SGGS Ji is our universal Guru and in his presence no other book or Granth can be installed parallel or equal to our Guru Ji.
“Singh Sahib Ji is silently witnessing this deep disrespect, for which Singh Sahib Ji may have to face the consequences as the last Hukam of Dasam Pita ‘Sabh Sikhan Ko Hukam Hai Guru Manio Granth’ is being contravened,” it states.
MGC also reiterated that the organisation has ‘always been up-holding the Panth Approved Sikh Rehat Maryada (SRM)’.
[ASIA SAMACHAR is an online newspaper for Sikhs in Southeast Asia and surrounding countries. We have a Facebook page, do give it a LIKE. Follow us on Twitter. Visit our website: www.asiasamachar.com]
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