Qualifications Of Jathedars Of The Sikh Takhts

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Jun 1, 2004
Extracts from an email circulating internet...
by Kirpal Singh, New Zealand

The Jathedars should be foremost Sewdars of the like of Bhai Kanaiya Singh Ji - faithful to Gurus with humility and devotions and fearless in the worldly battlefield. They should not be party to politicians or influential people under any circumstances and serve the Sikh Pant and humanity as ordained in the Guru Granth Sahib.

In terms of educational background, Jathedars of all Takhts, should have a PhD degree in some aspects of the Guru Granth Sahib and/or on the Sikh studies. and should have published good reseach papers and/or books in related areas Fluency in English language should be made essential. Jathedars are expected to write and speak on theology, moral, ethical and social topics and on interfaith issues.

It is worth mentioning that the two previous Jathedars, (Jathedar Tohra Ji and Jathedar Bhadungar Ji) were prolific writers of high standard.

The tenure of Jathedar should initialy be for three years renewal for another term of three years (maximum six years). The appointment should be by invitation and the invitation may not be restricted to one person only.

A Jathedars should be entitled to a handsome salary (equivalent to that of a CEO of a reputed company or more), comfortable housing, car with driver and fuel and local and international travel allowances. He should be given a grant to establish his/her own library with books on Sikh studies, Gurbani and compartive religion and interfaiths.

The Achbishop of Canterbury (Dr. Rowan Douglas William) is very imaculate and presents an example to emulate in terms of intelectual interaction expected of a Jathedar. The Catholic Pope of Vetican is too cremonial. However, the Jathedar of Akal Takht be accorded a status similar to that of the Catholic Pope. The Akal Thakt's Jathedar should rise to the level that
brings respect to this office from national and international leaders.

The Jathedars should have a decent office with a personal secretary; administrative officer and other support staff; fully equipped with IT facilities. The Jathedar's office should have an access to a modern conference room with multimedia conferencing facilities.

The Jathedars be assisted by a Council of Advisers opted from academics from various universities and institutions of higher learning. Services of the Sikh vice chancellors, university professors, managers, professionals and retired IAS/IPS & defence forces officers could be sought by rotation.

The elected members ( who represent intersts of various region or areas of the Community) should be Gursiks with unblemish record in public life and their interests should not conflict with the overall management and activities of main Committees like SGPC, DSGMC etc etc. Their term should not be more than three year with posibility of re-election.

All other local or historical Gurduaras in India as well overseas, should be managed by Gursiks with at least postgraduate qualifications and a good knowledge of the Gurbani and Sikh traditions.They should be fluent in Punjabi and local language (s). All Gurduaras should have libraries at the premises and arrangement to tech Gurmukhi to young and old members of the community should be put in place.

Just some thoughts! for your consumption.


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1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
This will never happen unless the law is changed. I read this email message too and it stimulated a lot of discussion in the mail group I belong to.

The writer is also confused about a number of things including the status of the Catholic Pope. The pope in Rome is a political leader as well as a religious one. He governs Vatican City which is an independent country with a seat at the UN, that issues passports, and has embassies throughout the world. The pope's "religious" qualifications to become a pope are determined by a "collegium" of cardinals or honored bishops in the Roman church. They gather together to elect a new pope after the death of a sitting pope. Every member of this collegium was appointed by a pope who has sinced passed on. The procedure is draped in secrecy and mystery, and if full of historical tales of political play.

Kirpal Singh should not think that the election of a pope is somehow the result of high minded thinking, absent of politics. The politics that govern the Roman church make the politics of Akal Takht look like a whisper. After all, the Roman church has had 2000 years to perfect its strategy.

Forgive me.

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