The Nishan Sahib or Sikh flag should be either basanti (Xanthic) which is yellow or surmaee (dark blue) and not the dark orange that is commonly used in most gurdwaras around the globe today.
This was the advice provided by the Malaysian Gurdwaras Council (MGC) in a letter released today.
“This letter was prompted by requests by members to some members to provide some clarification on the matter,” MGC president Jagir Singh told Asia Samachar.
The matter came to light when Gurdwara Sahib Butterworth, a gurdwara in the Malaysian state of Penang, unfurled a dark blue coloured nishan sahib, something alien to most Malaysian Sikhs of the present generation.
Like Sikhs around the world, most present day Sikhs are more familiar with the kesri or orange-coloured nishan sahib, with the Khanda usually in black.
The 16-page letter, emailed to Asia Samachar, makes references to a number of sources and argues why dark blue is the actual colour of the nishan sahib. SEE LETTER HERE.
It said that in the times of Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th Guru of the Sikhs, the Nishan Sahib was of navy blue in colour and that the Nihangs had preserved the colour to date.
“The Kesri colour flag found in many Gurdwaras is not SRM compliant. It was mostly introduced by Nirmalas, Udasis and Mahants from about 1715 to 1920. In the 1930’s/1940’s G.S. TOHRA, the Jathedar of Akali Dal then changed the colour to Saffron in many Gurdwaras,” it said.
In the letter, MGC noted that the SRM is an ‘approved Sikh Constitution’.
It said that the document was a panthic maryada approved after 14 years of laborious work and consultations.
“There may be some reservations regarding certain provisions in SRM but overall SRM has succeeded in uniting Sikhs and unifying the Code of conduct and religious practises in Gurdwaras. Without SRM it would have been free for all. Thus, any discussion on Nishan Sahib must necessarily begin with SRM provisions on the matter,” it said.
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