CHANDIGARH: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has reacted to Akal Takht acting jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh’s statement advising the Sikhs to keep licensed weapons in a manner that he has invited criticism from the Sikh community.
Here is what Jathedar said:
“Guru Hargobind Sahib who launched the concept of Miri-Piri, fought four battles against the then rulers and secured the victory in all. In entire Hindustan at that time, non-Muslims assumed that nobody could challenge this powerful empire, but Guru Sahib by securing victory in all four battles broke this assumption. He founded Sri Akal Takht Sahib. He asked His Sikhs to become shastardhari (armed) and strong by reciting gurbani. He spoke them that every Sikh should learn horse riding and martial arts. His teachings are relevant even today.
The Sikh youth becoming shastardhari is the need of the hour if we follow the teachings of Guru Sahib. They should be skillful in exercising the gatka which is the Sikh martial art, and shooting. Every Sikh should try to keep licensed modern weapons in a legal manner, because the time that is coming, and the circumstances which are going to prevail, demand it.
Every Sikh should become strong spiritually by reciting gurbani and meditating. He should be fit and stay away from drugs that damage us physically. These are the drugs which are destroying us. Drugs are killing our conscience and wisdom. The only way out to get rid of the drugs is to get connected to gurbani and adopt the company of Gursikh. These are the teachings of Guru Sahib”.
And here is what CM said in reaction:
ਮਾਣਯੋਗ ਜਥੇਦਾਰ ਸ੍ਰੀ ਅਕਾਲ ਤਖਤ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਜੀ ਤੁਹਾਡਾ ਹਥਿਆਰਾਂ ਵਾਲਾ ਬਿਆਨ ਸੁਣਿਆਂ…ਜਥੇਦਾਰ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਜੀ ਤੁਸੀਂ ਸਰਬੱਤ ਦਾ ਭਲਾ ਮੰਗਣ ਵਾਲੀ ਗੁਰਬਾਣੀ ਨੂੰ ਘਰ-ਘਰ ਪਹੁੰਚਾਉਣ ਦਾ ਸੰਦੇਸ਼ ਦਿਓ ਨਾ ਕਿ ਹਥਿਆਰ ਰੱਖਣ ਦਾ। ਜਥੇਦਾਰ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਆਪਾਂ ਪੰਜਾਬ ਵਿੱਚ ਸ਼ਾਂਤੀ, ਭਾਈਚਾਰੇ ਅਤੇ ਮਾਡਰਨ ਤਰੱਕੀ ਦੇ ਸੁਨੇਹੇ ਦੇਣੇ ਨੇ ਨਾ ਕਿ ਮਾਡਰਨ ਹਥਿਆਰਾਂ ਦੇ..
(Respected Jathedar, Sri Akal Takht Sahib ji…I have listened to your statement regarding weapons…You should give message that gurbani which pray for wellbeing of all, should be spread to everyone, not that of keeping weapons… Jathedar Sahib, we are supposed to disseminate messages of peace, brotherhood and modern progress in Punjab, not that of modern weapons)
The CM is facing backlash as the Jathedar has said nothing wrong or illegal. He specifically said that the modern weapons should be acquired in legal manner. He was just explaining the relevance of concept of Miri-Piri in present times. He did not ask to misuse the weapon to disturb law and order.