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Nanakshahi calendar: Jathedars adopt changes, final call by SGPC

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Archived_Member16, Dec 31, 2009.

  1. Archived_Member16

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    Jan 7, 2005
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    Nanakshahi calendar:

    Jathedars adopt changes,
    final call by SGPC

    Dharmendra Rataul - Indian Express
    Thursday , Dec 31, 2009

    Amritsar : Apparently buying more time on the controversy, the Sikh clergy on Wednesday adopted changes in the Nanakshahi calendar but shied away from announcing these. The five high priests referred the draft containing the amendments to the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) for a final decision.

    The move is unprecedented as the Akal Takht is considered supreme in taking decisions relating to religious issues.

    After a marathon meeting, the five Sikh high priests said they has adopted "certain changes". "We are not making any announcements on what are the changes introduced.

    The same are being sent to the SGPC executive body, which would consider and take a final decision. The announcement would then be made from the Takht," said Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh.

    Panthic leaders said that the move was aimed at buying more time to allow the dust to settle on the issue. Giani Gurbachan Singh admitted that it was difficult for the clergy too to reach a consensus.

    Sources meanwhile stated that the gurpurabs of Guru Nanak, Guru Gobind Singh and Guru Arjan Dev have been decided to be observed as per the Bikrami calendar and minute changes for Sangrands (first day of the month) have also been introduced. Two takhts -- Takht Patna Sahib and Takht Hazur Sahib -- have been demanding the changes in these gurpurabs, saying that the annual dates as per the Nanakshahi calendar clashed with the other important events. Sources also stated that Takht Damdama Sahib Jathedar Giani Balwant Singh Nandgarh posed a major opposition during the meeting to the changes in the Sangrands but finally fell in line due to pressure from the SGPC and the political class. Giani Gurbachan Singh, however, claimed that the amendments introduced had the approval of all five takhts.

    Sikh radicals have been opposing any change in the calendar adopted by the majority of the Sikhs since 2003. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has been accused by them of "advocating" the changes eyeing the upcoming general SGPC elections.

    The CM, however, denied he had anything to do with the controversy. "This is a religious matter being deliberated by the Akal Takht. I have no role to play. My visit to the Golden Temple today is coincidental," said Badal.
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  3. Archived_Member16

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    Jan 7, 2005
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    Nanakshahi Calendar

    Sikh bodies want SGPC panel
    to reject proposed changes

    Dharmendra Joshi
    Tribune News Service

    Jalandhar, December 31
    After the Sikh clergy referred the issue of the Nanakshahi Calendar to the SGPC executive committee for discussion, various Sikh bodies at home and among the diaspora today shot a letter to all executive committee members urging them to reject the “draft” of proposed changes that would come up for deliberations in their January 3 emergency meeting.

    Upping their ante against those who are pushing for changes in the calendar, the DSGMC, Dal Khalsa, Akand Kirtani Jatha, SAD (Panch Pardani), Sikh Students Federation, Sikh Youth of Punjab, Shiromani Khalsa Panchayat, Akal Federation, Sikh Watch Group categorically stated that the mixing of Nanakshahi Calendar with the Bikrami Calendar was unacceptable and uncalled.

    Urging the SGPC executive members not to buckle under pressure from any quarter, the leaders, including Parmjit Singh Sarna, Manjit Singh Calcutta, Kanwarpal Singh, Rajinder Singh, Giani Baldev Singh, Harpal Singh Cheema, Parmjit Singh Gazi, Gurpreet Singh Mann and Naraian Singh, said the calendar had been accepted by the community at large. Making an appeal to all of them, the letter states, “Don’t mess up the Nanakshahi Calendar with the Bikrami Calendar, as it will hurt sentiments of the community.”

    The leaders posed three questions to the presidents of the SAD and the SGPC. If gurpurb and ‘sangrands’ are to be observed as per the Bikrami Calendar, then where was the need for the Nanakshahi Calendar? Are you not putting the Sikhs in a ridiculous and awkward situation by mixing the Bikrami and Nanakshahi Calendars? Will you like to see yourself as sinners of the panth and history?

    Groups from the diaspora that have voiced their concern on the issue includes the American Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Sikh Youth of America, Dasmesh Darbar Surrey, United Khalsa Dal, UK, International Sikh Council Belgium, Voices For Freedom, Sikh Federation of Germany, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, KAC (Washington, DC).

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