SANT JARNAIL SINGH BHINDRANWALE
The Folowing are taken from speeches by Sant Baba Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale Ji, a man described by the Indian Government as a "Terrorist", but beloved as a Truth-Speaking Saint by Sikhs. Well known for speaking out against the tyranny & ethnic cleansing by the Indian Government of Sikhs, he is remembered for soothing words such as, "Physical Death I do Not fear, Death of the Conscience is a Sure Death". Sikhs were brutally murdered within a few months by the Indian Army & the Police forces, all on order from the Indian Government in 1984. This year is engraved in the minds of all Sikhs as the year that Ethnic Cleansing of Sikhs in India stepped up a gear........
Here starts one of his speeches:
GREETING FROM SANT JI
Guru's Image, Guru Khalsa, Assembly of God's worshippers; constituted and blest by Satguru, Supporter of the humble, the True King; all the Congregation, say aloud:
"Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh" (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God). Guru's beloved Khalsa Ji: you are the temporal and the religious authority (of the Sikhs), (assembled) at the sacred place of Sahib Siri Guru Hargobind Sahib, the True King.
THE SIKH FAITH IS UNDER SIEGE
In order to destroy religion, on all sides and in every manner, mean tactics have been initiated. To defeat these, the entire Panth (the Khalsa Brotherhood) assembled under one leadership and started recruitment of Mar-jeevraas (those who have resolved to sacrifice their lives). Just now, on way to this place I, your servant, heard that by now the count has already reached nearly 70,000 and it is expected that the figure that will be announced today, by Satguru's grace, will reach 100,000. Why have we recruited these 100,000 volunteers? With these 100,000 volunteers, do we have to distribute tickets (for elections to various political offices), or do we have to go some place and preach to people to buy certain goods. No, that is not the purpose. We, all Gursikh (Guru's Sikh) men and women who have assembled here today, have to resolve whether we are going to spend the days of our lives as slaves or do we wish to shake the (yoke of) slavery from around our necks and live as free people. This is why we are assembled here. Several Gurmukhs (Guru's devotees), representing newspapers meet with me. Even today, I met just now. He asked: "Sant Ji, in view of the recruitment of 100,000 persons has been completed today, what is your next program?" I answered: "My brother, Dictator Sahib Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) will tell you this." It is not proper for all (of us) to give statements on our own at various places. He asked: "What do you have in your mind?" I answered: "What Kalgidhar Ji (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) put in, is there." He went away quietly, knowing I would not give him anything. What is the reason these people keep asking (such questions)? There is only one reason, viz., to figure out a way which they might adopt to destroy the unity of the Panth in order to preserve their own chairs (positions of authority, public offices). There is need for all of us to remain very watchful in this respect.
THE SIKHS ARE SLAVES IN INDIA
Sikhs Are Ignorant
Regarding the brutalities perpetrated by the police at various places, many of our brothers, freshly arrived from the villages, ask:
"Sant Ji, we don't know about enslavement." In this connection, I have to make some points as to how we are slaves?
The Press Is Hostile
I had a discussion with Ram Jethamalani, a very well-known lawyer at the Supreme Court (of India) and Subramaniam who is a prominent representative of a (political) party. They also asked me similar questions, as to how we are slaves? How are the Sikhs a separate Nation? I consider it important to humbly present some of these questions and answers to you. The reason I have to do this is that such items are not reported in their entirety in the newspapers. Even if they are, it is only one or two newspapers that provide coverage, others stay quiet.
Different Punishment For The Same Offense. Peaceful Protest Is A Crime
Khalsa Ji: a lady born to a house of Pundits, having got the votes of the people, became Prime Minister of India. This is Bibi (lady) Indira Gandhi. In 1977, according to her deeds, a judge of the Supreme Court sentenced her to a few days in prison. To serve this sentence she went to Tihar Jail. Nobody slapped her, she had no wounds. No one used any disrespectful word. A judge had sentenced her. But her colleagues, Pande and others, hijacked a plane to protest their Bibi having been sent to prison. What was the punishment given (to them) for this hijacking? They were given tickets for becoming members of the Legislative Assembly, one in U.P. (Uttar Pradesh) and the other in Bihar. On the other hand, on September 14, (1981) in Chando-Kalan, two busses belonging to the Jatha (Sant Bhindranwale's group) with copies of Sahib Satguru Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji in them, were doused with kerosene and set on fire by government officials including Bhatti (a police official) and some others like him. After that, on September 20, (1981), in Chowk Mehta, I offered myself for arrest after offering prayers to the Guru in the presence of the Congregation. The entire Panth, (including various) associations and organizations, had assembled there. In spite of my surrendering peacefully, Khalsa Ji, one and one-half dozen Singhs, our turbaned Sikhs, were put to death (by the police). When the young men of the (Sikh) Nation did not find any redress or justice coming from any quarter, in order to do what they could to direct the attention of the entire public and the government to this atrocity, to point out what the government had been doing to the Sikhs, they hijacked a plane. These five Sikhs, Gajinder Singh and others, who are in Pakistan, have been exiled. In addition it was said: "These persons are our accused, our criminals, they should be handed over to us, we have to sentence them to death." If a plane is hijacked for the sake of a lady of the Pundits, there is the chair (public office), but if a plane is hijacked for the Beloved (Guru) of the Sikhs there is exile! Hijacking a plane for a lady of the Pundits is patriotism, but, if a Sikh hijacked a plane to protest (the treatment of) his Beloved (Siri Guru Granth Sahib), Manjeet Singh was shot to death at Raja Sansi airport on August 20, (1982). This is an evident sign of slavery. Padey and associates did not damage the plane nor did they hurt any passengers. Nor did these Sikhs, in all three hijackings, harrass any passenger or damage any planes. But, what is the rule? For a fellow with a turban, there is the bullet, there is the crippling injection, there is exile. However, if one says "Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Hare Rama, Hare Rama," there is the chair (appointment to high office), This is a sign of slavery, Khalsa Ji.
Sikhs are Denied Right of peaceful Protest
A few days back, Sant Ji (Harchand Singh Longowal) spoke from this stage. That Singh had gone there. I was unwell and could not attend. Lehar Singh is the Singh's name, Lehar Singh. He is from Jattanwali alias Ramnagar village in District Ferozepur, Tehsil Fazilka. One Bichhu Ram of that place - this name I have heard for the first time, maybe it it new to you too ( the word literally means "a scorpion"). This Bichhu Ram, Thanedar (Station House Officer at a Police Station) arrested this Amritdhari (formally initiated into the Sikh Faith) Sikh. What sin had he committed? The same that all of us have committed. Longowal has committed it, Jarnail Singh has committed it, these stage secretaries have committed it. What was the sin? It was the Rasta Roko (stop the traffic) agitation. He participated in this crime (of peaceful protest). He has contributed his share to the struggle. Khalsa Ji: with his five daughters and his wife, the seven of them including himself, stopped the traffic for two and a half hours. No other man was with him. They arrested and took him away to the police station. He was asked whence he had taken Amrit. I have humbly said this on several occasions that if anyone asks such a question, you should not name any person. You should merely say: "I took Amrit from the Five Beloved Ones (of the Guru)." But many people have got into this habit. They will say: "I took Amrit from the Akalis." Others say: "I took Amrit from Bhindranwale." I do not know why they have started to treat these persons as different. Someone might say: "I took Amrit from Kleranwale (a group of Sikhs owing allegiance to Sant Kleranwale), or from someone else." Amrit is taken from the Five Beloved Ones (of the Guru), not from any man. If anyone takes it from a man, it is not Amrit. Khalsa Ji: when he (Lehar Singh) mentioned the name of the Jatha (Sant Bhindranwale's group), this Amritdhari Singh's beard was forcibly shaved off. His beard was cut and he was sent to Amritsar. They also told him: "Go and tell Bhindranwale that we have cut off your beard. He can use whatever force he can against us." He came and told me. The matter was taken up on this stage. If, from this stage, I say something naming someone they say: "Bhindranwala has given out the name of such person, now this name has come on the "List"." This kind of gossip goes on. This is a sign of slavery. A Sikh is not allowed to protest peacefully and stop the traffic even while reciting God's word.
Hindu Fascists Are Encouraged
Only the Sikh raises the slogan of Hindu-Sikh unity. Our leaders also do this. All of us too keep doing this. Our Hindu brethren held a conference here. They raised slogans of "Hindu-Hindu Bhai Bhai" (Hindus are brothers to one another). There was no mention of the Sikh. Some time back, slogans: "Kachh, Kara, Kirpaan; Ehnoon bhejo Pakistan" (The shorts, the steel bangle, the sword - symbols of the Sikhs - send these to Pakistan); and "Dukki tikki khehan nahin deni, sir te pagri rehan nahin deni" (we are not going to let any second or third group exist, we are not going to let a turban remain on any head) were shouted here. A Hindu shouting these slogans is a patriot but if a son of a Sikh gets up on a stage and says: "We have to get justice for our (murdered) brothers", he is a criminal. This is a sign of slavery.
Police Brutality - The Cases Of Jasbir Singh Of Chupkiti And Jangir Singh
Four Singhs have come to see me today. I had intended that if I could meet that Singh I would present him to you from this stage. However, he could not see me. This was because of the crowds. Four Sikhs have come from Moga after release (from jail). They had been imprisoned in connection with a murder. It was a false charge. In the remaining cases they have been granted bail. Today they have come here. If he is somewhere he can hear my voice, I would request Jasbir Singh of Chupkiti to come up here (to the dais) before the end of this session so he can meet the Congregation. He is an Amritdhari Singh. He is a Granthi (Reader of Siri Guru Granth Sahib) in the Moga area. The name of the village is Chupkiti. He was arrested. Nothing incriminating was found from him. Khalsa Ji: he is a Granthi at a Gurdwara. He was forcibly laid down on the floor and a Hindu policeman sat on his chest. The policeman smoked hand-rolled cigarettes while sitting on his chest. He spat and dropped tobacco in Jasbir Singh's mouth. There is no punishment for him. There is a man named Jangir Singh. His thigh was cut and a piece of his flesh torn out. The wound was filled with salt. There is no action against those who filled the salt.
Harassment Of Sikhs In Government Service
Thirty-two young men, only of them Sikhs, have been removed from service with the police. No Hindu has been removed.
Sikhs Jailed Without Due Process
Today, many students belonging to the federation (The All India Sikh Students' Federation), in counts of thousands, have come here. Many other dear Gurmukhs have come and we have assembled here as a congregation. Here is Harminder Singh Sandhu. He too was hung upside down and detained. Bua Singh and his other associates were detained for a year. On the 20th, they were to be released. Khalsa Ji: on the 19th, they were taken out of the jail to a police station and again charged in a case. They (the government) charged: "While in jail you conspired that when you get out you are going to do such and such thing." No one cares about evidence. There is no proof. Khalsa Ji: the turban tied on the head is the sole reason these sins, these crimes, are being attributed to us. Today, or perhaps it was yesterday, I read the names of two students who have both been again detained for another year. Why has this been done? Because they are sons of Sikhs. We are so many gathered here in this Congregation, let any one of you, any devotee of the Guru, get up and tell if any son of a Hindu has ever been detained anywhere in Punjab, even a single one.
Brutality Against Sikh Women
A daughter of a Sikh, a young woman, was stripped naked by police employees. The police officials made her have sexual contact with her father in public. This happened in Ghall Khurd police station. Khalsa Ji: there are no legal proceedings against this evil-minded official. No action is being taken against him. Why? Because this happened to a daughter of the Sikhs.
Hindu Life More Precious Than Sikh
I am not overly interested in anyone's dying nor in killing, but I will not hesitate in saying this. They say a Hindu was killed in Patiala by a police bullet. How much hue and cry was raised by the Mahasha (Arya Samajist Hindu) Press! They said: "A Hindu has been killed. A great sin has been committed. President's rule should be imposed in the state". If the Sikhs say the same thing they are called communalists (The Sikhs had been demanding action against the state government without success). One of your men died, you (the Hindu press) started wailing. Here over two hundred Sikhs have been killed by the police, has anyone of them opened his mouth over it? Khalsa Ji: these are signs of slavery. This is oppression.
THE SIKH RELIGION IS DISTINCT
They are not prepared to accept Sikhs as a distinct Nation. I had a conversation with Subramaniam and Ram Jethamalani. They consider themselves to be wise persons. They asked (me): "How are the Sikhs a separate Nation?" I said: "If I prove it will you agree? They answered: "In that case, perhaps". I told them: "The (Sikh) Nation has some attributes that set it apart.
Sikh Scripture Is Different
Our religious authority is different from that of other people. Khalsa Ji: Qura'n has thirty chapters, Geeta has eighteen. Geeta nowhere provides for a Muslim to attain heaven. Geeta does not provide for the deliverance of a Muslim. In the thirty chapters of the Qura'n nothing is written about the deliverance of a Hindu. But the place where we are sitting today, in the Guru (that it belongs to), in the Beloved Guru (Siri Guru Granth Sahib) whom we all revere; Kabir Ji, the weaver, is seated; out of Cobblers, Bhagat Ravidas Ji is seated; of Potters, Beni Ji is seated; of Jats, Dhanna Ji is seated; of Brahmins, Jaidev Ji is seated; of Washermen, Namdev Ji is seated; of Barbers, Sain Ji, the barber, is seated. Who did not get a place here? A Hindu can not touch the ground with his forehead in a mosque. In a Hindu temple, a Muslim cannot touch the ground with his forehead. But has anyone ever been turned away from this (the Guru's) door? This is our uniqueness.
Only Sikhs Have Free Kitchens
If you travel in this world - I too have had the opportunity to go out in Hindostan to a few places. I have been to Gaya. The Budh Temple in Gaya cost four crores of rupees to build, but if anyone wants a drink of water, he has to pay half a rupee for a glass of water. You will get it for a price, not free. The row of people getting free food will not be found in a mosque or in a Hindu temple. Nor will it be found in a church. The row of people getting free food is only found in the court of Guru Ram Das, Guru Nanak, Guru Gobind Singh Sahib. You will not find it elsewhere.
Why The Opposition To Sikh Identity?
Jethamalani said: "I consider the entire population of Hindustan to be a Nation". I said: "How many countries are there (in the world)?" He said: "117." I said: "There are 117 nations. If you accept the existence of Sikhs as the 118th nation, would some calamity strike?" He answered: "None". I asked him: "Section 25 of the Indian Constitution says Jains are Hindu, Budhs are Hindu, and Sikhs are Hindu. If the entire population of India is one nation, what was the need to specially name these three in the Constitution?" He said: "I have no answer". Here is a lawyer of the Supreme Court (of India). He charges twelve thousand rupees for each hour of debate and he says: "I have no answer". It is not in my control that there is no answer. "You tell me if we are a separate nation or not. Why don't you accept this? Is it because this is a Nation that wishes to live with a sense of honor, it is a Nation that wishes to live with self-respect?", I asked him.
Sikhs Have Always Stood For Justice For All
He (Ram Jethamalani) said: "Hindus are being unfairly treated, there is communalism in the minds of many Sikhs." I asked him: "When the agitation against the emergency (1975-1977) was going on, were handcuffs put on Longowal?" He said: "No". I asked: "How about Tohra (Jathedar Gurcharan Singh Tohra, President of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee), Talwandi (Jathedar Jagdev Singh Talwandi), Badal (Sardar Parkash Singh Badal, former Chief Minister of Punjab), other Sikh leaders, Bhindranwale?" He said: "No one was handcuffed." I asked him who arrested you? He said: "Hindus". I asked him who were arrested (at that time)? He said: "Hindus". I said: "What then was the need for us (Sikhs) to launch a protest (against the declaration of national emergency and curtailment of civil liberties) from the (Akal) Takhat Sahib? (It was because) we believed in brotherhood of all, we had love for humanity. We had firm conviction in the teaching: Naanak Naam Charrdee Kalaa(n) ["Nanak says: God's Name is glorious"]. We followed (the teaching): Tere Bhaane Sarbat Daa(n) Bhallaa ["There is good for all in accepting Your will"]. That was the reason we started the agitation from here. Now you tell (us) how many out of your community of 660 million went to jail to protect your rights, and how many out of the community of 17.5 million courted arrest to get you released?" He said: "You had more". I told him: "Now we are struggling on behalf of all Punjabis. We are not making demands. We are asking for our rights, only our rights. And we have to get our rights, it is not that we are not to get them and all this is idle talk. We have to get them even if it means we are cut up bit by bit. We have to get them under all circumstances." Khalsa Ji: when I asked him: "Tell me this. Here the Akali Dal has assembled the entire Sikh Panth in this protest. Out of our 660 million Hindu brothers, how many have courted arrest? How many have gone with us to get us out of jails?" He (had no answer and) was quiet. Khalsa Ji: the Congregation should please pardon me but the weakness is in ourselves. When we sit on this stage and speak, why don't we talk about the Sikh Nation being distinct? The weakness is ours. We are sinners of the house of our Guru.
Laws Discriminate Against Sikh Beliefs And Practices
Sikhs are a distinct Nation. It is not (really) necessary to be so called but from the worldly point of view and other reasons it has become necessary. When you have to go to a foreign country, if you have been married here according to Anand Karaj (the Sikh marriage ceremony) in the presence of our Guru (Siri Guru Granth Sahib), you will have to certify in writing that you were married according to Hindu rites, not according to Sikh religion in the presence of the Guru. Else you will not be able to travel. Son of a Sikh cannot inherit his paternal property till he is 17. If Chhalli Ram (a Hindu) is born to Talli Ram (Hindu names contemptuously coined by Sant Bhindranwale), he is heir to his father's property at birth. For these reasons it is necessary to have us declared a separate religion in the Constitution. We cannot acquire more than 17 acres of land, we cannot own property (beyond this limit). But if Gulli Ram is born to Chhalli Ram, even if the property is worth four crore (forty million) rupees, he is the owner of that property. This is (the yoke of) slavery around our necks.
Sikhs Not Allowed Free Travel In India
The country is free, but a line is drawn. A person who has a turban on, whether he belongs to the Congress party or is an Akali or a Communist, cannot reach Delhi during the Asian Games. But a fellow who has cut his hair, is associated with a Hindu there, can go. Isn't this slavery?
APPEAL FOR UNITY
(During the struggle for freedom of India), you, sons of the Guru who are sitting here, gave 93 heads (93% of people hanged by the British were Sikhs). All the others gave 7 (the actual number was 28. Apparently, Sant Bhindranwale took the total number of Sikhs hanged as the percentage). Those who gave seven heads now are masters of India and those who gave ninety-three are slaves. Why is it so? It is so because we are greedy. Our misfortune is disunity. We try to throw mud at each other. Why don't we give up thinking of mud and, in close embrace with each other, work with determination so that we can complete our work. All of us should pay attention to these matters. Khalsa Ji: I implore this Congregation. We are making a pledge here. When earlier pledges were made here I spoke but could not come (to the Congregation) because of ill-health. Some of our brethren thought I had quarreled with Longowal and that was why I had not come. Has our quarrel ended today? I do not know why, influenced by the newspapers, you fall prey to doubts? There are no differences among any of us. We shall work together and die together. But do have faith about this one thing. I couldn't come myself but I have come to know that Sant Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) spoke (to you) yesterday. He too said:
"Singhs, don't be in doubt. Whatever decision is taken will be taken by your assembly". Then why should there be any doubts? Whatever is written in the copy of Anandpur Resolution is known to everyone. I too have a copy. Everyone, you too have copies. If any one (of us) goes back on it, do not be lenient to me and I shall not be lenient to you. But I shall surely tell you: "This is what it contains and here is where we stand. Tell us what you want done." At that time the decision will be in your hands.
I implore all of you in this Congregation. Go to the villages and make every child, every mother, every Singh realize we are slaves and we have to shake off this slavery in order to live.
SIKHS DO NOT WANT KHALISTAN, A SEPARATE SIKH STATE
There is plenty of talk about Khalistan. They ask me: "Sant Ji, are you in favor of Khalistan or not?" I appeal to these news reporters. If you have asked someone a question on an issue once, twice, four times, you should be satisfied. It does not look nice to ask the same question day after day. I shall certainly say it is wrong to ask us these questions. How can a nation which has sacrificed so much for the freedom of the country want it fragmented? But I shall definitely say this: "We are not in favor of Khalistan nor are we against it." Subramaniam asked me: "What does this mean?" I said: "I shall tell you. This is the job of the Center (The Central Government). It is not Bhindranwale's or Longowal's job. The Center should tell us, does it want to keep these turbaned people with it or not? (Someone starts to shout the Jaikaara but Sant Bhindranwale stops him saying) I wish to tell you one thing: don't get carried away shouting Jaikaaras. We wish to live in Hindustan. We wish to live as equal citizens. The Center should tell us whether it wants to keep us with it or not. If the Center wants to keep us with it, it should give us our full rights according to the sacrifices we have made. If it wishes to take a count, it is all right with us. It should give us territory corresponding to 93 heads (Number of Sikhs hanged during the freedom struggle). It can keep the land corresponding to the seven remaining heads. A Singh does not charge any interest. If we did charge interest, they would have nothing left from their share. Over 36 years, the seven heads are not enough to meet the interest (on ninety-three). The entire hundred percent is your right. However, if you do not accept this line of argument, the Center should just tell us if it wants to keep us with it? However, I must say that, standing on this stage, we do not demand it and we do not oppose it either. But, if the Center gives us Khalistan, we shall take it. This time, we shall not repeat the mistake of 1947. But this is Center's job, the Center is responsible for it. If it wishes, it can keep us with it or if it wishes, it can call us terrorists and extremists and separate us. It is their job. Don't put the blame on us.
SIKHS ARE DISTINCT - ANOTHER ARGUMENT
This issue come up every day; regarding the Sikhs being a separate Nation. I like to make another humble statement. They say Sikhs are extremists. I asked those leaders: "If the Sikhs are extremists, you should accept the Sikhs are a separate Nation (in as much as extremism is their exclusive characteristic). If Sikhs are a part of Hindus, then you should write Hindus as extremists (the characteristics of Sikhs and Hindus being the same on that hypothesis)." When they want to abuse us or use foul language towards us it is exclusively towards people with turbans, but when we ask for our rights, we are told: "You are part of us." hey say: "You are born out of us." I humbly submit that the whole world is born of Sikhs. In a Pundit's home, in a Muslim's home, or in a Sikh's home, no one is born without hair. If all people stayed as they were born of their parents and kept the appearance given them by God, they would not be called Chhalli Ram or Gulli Ram. Everyone would address them as Sardar Ji. Tell me who is born? Who is created by Nature? Don't get into misunderstandings over this.
BEING A SMALL MINORITY IS NO REASON TO LOSE OUR IDENTITY
One thought being rubbed into the minds of our young brothers is that we (Sikhs) are like salt in the dough (that we are so few). But if the (lump of) salt in the dough is a little too much, the dough is hard to eat. Don't let this worry you. Our Father (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) said: "I shall make each of them fight 125,000. Only then shall I deserve to be called Gobind Singh". He told us to fight 125,000. Now that is a far off thing. At this time we are (sort of) sitting low (the ratio of our enemies to us is far less than 125,000).
Unite To Seek Justice
I appeal to the entire Congregation. March together. Regarding the pledge, I said at that time too and, I shall say this again now, only those of my brothers should make a pledge here who have bid their final farewell to their mothers and fathers, who have given up all attachment to property and the world; who are steadfast in their resolve to seek justice for the dishonor of our sisters, for the blood of innocent persons that has been drunk, and for insult to Satguru Granth Sahib. Only such of my brothers, my elders, my mothers and sisters should raise their arms here and make the pledge. Anyone who is still thinking about selling a trolleyful of wheat, who is considering the good price of melons, should go about his business over the next six months and register his name later. Here, there is no promise of seventy-two houris, or of wine made from grapes, or of other comforts of heaven; the tradition here is, Jou tou prem khelan kaa chaaou sir dhar talee galee meree aaou ["If you wish to play the game of love, come to my place with your head on the palm of your hand"]. This is not my way, it is the Guru's. So, I welcome with great respect all those of you who have come with this attitude; I respect the rest of the Congregation too and request you to be prepared to develop the same attitude.
Bear Arms As Required By The Religion
Also you should acquire weapons. There is going to be no deliverance without weapons. Subramaniam (a member of Indian Parliament) asked me: "Why do you keep weapons, you are a sant (a holy man)?" I replied: "I am not the son of a eunuch. I am a son of Guru Gobind Singh Sahib." I am not saying this myself. It is written: veh pragatiyo marad agamrraa variyaam ikelaa vaah vaah gobind singh aape gur chelaa ["The Distinguished Man, the Unique Warrior manifested. Wonderful is Gobind Singh, Himself the Guru and the Disciple"]. I have a tape-recording of the meeting with him (Subramaniam). He left convinced that it is right for a Sikh to keep any weapons he might like to. He indeed said this, I have a tape-recording. You may listen to it in a gathering of a million. Further, it is a sin for a Sikh to keep weapons to hurt an innocent person, to rob anyone's home, to dishonor anyone or to oppress anyone. But there is no greater sin for a Sikh than keeping weapons and not protecting his faith. ( the Sikh weapon worn on them at all times is the Kirpan- a small sword)
Government Propaganda: "Sikhs Are Extremists." Are We?
In closing, I wish to ask you to raise your arms before Sant Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal). It is not for this pledge (that Sant Ji is going to ask you for ). It is for another pledge. The Government and the Mahasha (Arya Samajist Hindu) press have started saying that all of us who are assembled here are extremists. I might as well make some of you that. One who takes Amrit and helps others take it; who reads the Gurbani (Guru's word: Siri Guru Granth Sahib) and teaches others to do the same; who gives up intoxicants and helps others to do likewise; who urges all to get together and work in cooperation; who preaches Hindu-Sikh unity and asks for peaceful coexistence; who says: "If you are a Muslim be a devout Muslim, if you are a Sikh be a devout Sikh, respect your Beloved (Siri Guru Granth Sahib), unite under the saffron Nishaan Sahib (religious flag of the Sikhs), stoutly support the Panth, and be attached to Satguru's (Siri Guru Granth Sahib's) Throne and Guru's Darbar;" persons who preach like this are now all being called extremists by this government and by the Mahasha press. In particular, I have been given a big title. They call me the "leader of the extremists". I am a firm extremist, but of the type which has the characteristics I have described to you. If you too are ready to become extremists of this type, raise your arms when I say the Jaikaara. Not before I say the Jaikaara, only after I say it. First listen as to what type of extremist you are going to become: one who is a Sikh of the Guru (Siri Guru Granth Sahib); who seeks justice for the martyrs; who seeks to support the Panth till his last breath; who, till his death, will stand under the saffron Nishaan Sahib; who will follow the Hukamnamas (orders issued by religious Sikh authorities) - this too, carrying out the Hukamnamas, that's where it started; who is desirous of seeking justice for the lost honor of our daughters and sisters, for the blood of innocent persons that has been drunk. He, who is an extremist of this type, for him alone I shall say this. He, who is a Sikh of the spinning wheel and the goat (follower of Mahatma Gandhi), or of Radhaswamis or Narkdharis (Nirankaris); firstly such a Sikh would not have come to this Congregation; but if there is any of their Sikh who has disguised himself and come to this Congregation, let him hear too. He, who is their Sikh, he who applies sandhur to a jand tree or waters a pipal tree; such Sikhs should not, even by mistake, raise their arms. He, who is a Sikh of the Guru; who is a son of the Sikhs; who is desirous of getting justice; should surely raise his arms. You will become extremists and will not be able to go back on this. The pledge you make here will not be forgiven. (Sant Bhindranwale shouts the Jaikaara): Bolay so nihaal (Whoever says will be blest) The Congregation responds: Sat Sri Akal (True is the Eternal Lord))
With this I heartily thank all those workers who have come to make the pledge.
SACRIFICE FOR THE FAITH: A STORY FROM SIKH HISTORY
One day from this stage, Sant Baba Harchand Singh Ji Longowal said: "I don't know what has happened to Jarnail Singh. He no longer leads people in shouting the slogan, "Dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa, Dharam sir dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa" (Without sacrifice it will not survive; the Faith will not survive without sacrifice of our lives). Perhaps his cough has flared up." I had been ill for several days. Sant Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) knew about this. He thought my cough had worsened. Actually, I did not have much cough but had caught cold. But the Singhs have said this (that I should lead the shouting of this slogan). My body (physical condition) does not permit (me to do it); please accept whatever way I am able to say it. You can shout the slogan aloud yourselves.
When the caps, the knots of people's hair, and the Janeoo (the sacred threads) of the Hindu society were being piled up at the end of Nauranga's (Emperor Aurangzeb's) cot, they (the Hindus) went to Mathura, Kidaarnath, Badrinarayan, Vaishnodevi, Samasyadevi and Shiv Ling (various Hindu holy places) and offered prayers. No one heard their cries. At that time, it is said, a divine letter arrived.
According to history, this letter was from Shiv Ji. Kashmiri pundits came with that letter to our Beloved Guru, Protector of the Faith (Siri Guru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib) at Anandpur Sahib. Upon arrival there, they appealed to him. They bowed their heads. They were sighing, had dry lips, tattered clothes, worn out shoes and were without proper covering for their heads. (Without cover, and shorn of their hair) their heads looked like water-melons. They came to the Guru Sahib and said: "Beloved (Guru), have mercy upon us. In earlier forms (Sikh Gurus preceding Siri Guru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib) you have spoken the words: "He embraces whoever seeks His protection. This is the Master's Way." We are oppressed; in your mercy protect our honor, hold our hand." Some wise man said about Guru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib: "The only support is at the Feet of God; we should attach our minds to God's Feet (the Divine Word). The mind is prone to evil, through Guru's instruction we should turn our minds from evil. If we hold someone by the arm, we must not let go even if we have to give our head (must not betray anyone we have promised to support)." Guru Tegh Bahaadar spoke: "Dhar payeeay dharam na chhodiay (we must not give up our Faith even if it means death)." Thus, our Beloved Guru held their hand. The Kashmiri pundits were overjoyed as a hungry man is when he is given bread; as a thirsty man is when given water; as one rescued from the jaws of death, from the jaws of a tiger, from a fire. Taking them along, He started on His way to Delhi. Our Beloved Guru has got ready and started off for Delhi. Preaching God's message to all on his way, meeting Ajari and fulfilling his prayers, our Beloved Guru reached Delhi. There was questions and answers with Nauranga. Here schemes were concocted for the martyrdom of Satguru Ji, the Supporter of the humble. Bhai Mati Das (a companion of Siri Guru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib) was asked: "Smoke tobacco, take a sip of liquor, and chew tobacco, say once, "I am not the Guru's Sikh"; I shall give you my daughter in marriage." Bhai Mati Das contemptuously (literally: with the tip of his shoe) spurned the offer of Nauranga's daughter in marriage. The reply he gave at that time. Bhai Mati Das went to the Satguru. Maharaj (Siri Guru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib) asked him: "My brave man, how are you doing?" He replied: "God is merciful, all is well. I am facing a tough test. I do not want to score 99 percent. I want 100 percent. Have mercy on me. May I pass this test of being a Sikh. Of the Guru's family, the very first martyr was the Fifth King (Siri Guru Arjan Dev Sahib). Of Sikhs, the first martyrdom for the Faith is going to be mine. Have mercy so I may succeed, the coming generations may then receive guidance from it and be prepared for sacrifices." My throat does not permit me to recite aloud the sermon Satguru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib Ji, sitting in a cage, in Chandni Chowk, gave to Bhai Mati Das for the protection of the Faith. However, I shall do the best I can, you can repeat it more vigorously. What is it that Satguru Tegh Bahaadar Sahib, sitting in a cage in Chandni Chowk, is telling Bhai Mati Das regarding His dear Faith? (It is): "Dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa, Dharam sir dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa" (Without sacrifice it will not survive; the Faith will not survive; the Faith will not survive without sacrifice of our lives) Repeat after me: (The Congregation repeats the verse). It (Faith) won't be kept with that much. How many of you are here? Why are you speaking in bird-like chirps. If a slogan has to be shouted for a leader or for a holy man, you make the place resound. It is a matter of Faith. I hope you have not fallen asleep. Is it too warm here? Speak aloud. Here NISA (the notorious law under which the Government carried out arbitrary arrests and killing of any active opposition) won't apply, this is Guru's Darbar. It (NISA) applies there, in Gandhi's Darbar In Guru Hargobind Sahib's Darbar the NISA of fifty two; yes, fifty two; is destroyed (the reference is to the fifty two Hindu princes for whom Siri Guru Hargobind Sahib is said to have secured release from jail simultaneously with His own release): Dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa, Dharam sir dityaan baajh nahin rehnaa (Without sacrifice it will not survive; the Faith will not survive without sacrifice of our lives). (The Congregation repeats the verse)
Khalsa Ji: this was the slogan that was shouted. Today, the same situation has arisen. Bhai Mati Das had said: "Even if I have to give my head, may I never lose my love for the Sikh Faith". I am sorry to note that some people who hanker after a chair say instead:
"Even if I lose my Faith, may I never lose my chair". And our younger generation has started saying this: "Even if I lose my Faith, may a beard never grow on my face". On whose face do you want it to grow? I shall say this to my young brothers who have cut their beards:
"Resolve here today that you will keep beards, give up intoxicants, and take Amrit". If you find the beard too heavy, (note that) at this place (Harmandar Sahib) God fulfills prayers very quickly. Pray to God saying: "The True King, you were kind to us and made us men and gave us birth in Sikh homes. But we do not like this Sikhism and manhood. Have mercy on us. Make us into women and make women into men. Make this exchange." Some say I consider women to be inferior. I do not consider them inferior. I say this only to make these young men ashamed of what they do, not to imply that women are inferior. Some of our sisters also object: "Sant Ji, why don't you give the Parshaad of the Five Beloved Ones to us. Why don't you include women among the Five Beloved Ones?" I shall humbly say this to (our) mothers:
"Mothers, no Sikh is jealous of you. There is no discrimination. But this is your own weakness. It is not in my control. When our Beloved Guru (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib), in 1756 (Bikram calendar, equivalent to 1699 A.D.), asked for heads, he did not say he needed the head of a man or woman. At that time, He only said He needed a head. Of the gathering of 80,000 no woman got up to have her head cut off by the sword. Only those will get Parshaad who had their heads cut off. How can others get it? For this reason, there is no discrimination in our mind. If someone does have it, it is his business. (Some persons shout the Jaikaara) Now, at this time you men shout the Jaikaara about women being mentioned in this manner, but note that in this protest movement, the share of our mothers has not been less than ours. It is true that there is this accusation (of not volunteering when Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib asked for a head) but keep in mind that Bhagats, people called Gurus, and those who were Divine Incarnations, were born of them. Stay united. If, in the course of my speech, I uttered a harsh word, I implore the entire Congregation to forgive me regarding me as an humble servant of the Congregation, and an uneducated fallible person. Once again, in concluding, I implore you to take Amrit and be prepared. Keep weapons and whatever orders are given by the Panth, obey them. Work to remove the (yoke of) slavery from our necks. To those who ask me what is in my mind, I say that Guru Sahib knows this and when the time comes, it will become known. We all have to work together. Don't fall prey to misgivings. "Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh" (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God).
2. Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale's Speech June 1983
Guru's Image, Guru Khalsa, assembly of God's worshippers; constituted and blest by Satguru; all the congregation, say aloud:
Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God.)
Guru's beloved Khalsa Ji: sitting in the sacred lap of Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, the True King, you have listened to nice views, regarding the present times, expressed by speakers who have spoken from this stage. You are fortunate.
FALSE ACCUSATIONS BY GOVERNMENT
Charge Of Pakistan Connection.
In this struggle that has been going on for quite some time, there have been many arrests and martyrdoms. The Ministers of the Government of the time have started giving ever new statements. We should pay attention to all of these. Also, we have to be very alert to the attempts that are being made to alienate the public from the Akali Dal by going to various places, denying the separateness of the Sikh Nation, and denying the Sikh demands. Especially, this statement that Bibi Indira (Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India) has made that Pakistan has a hand in this struggle. Prior to this, Charan Choudhary (Charan Singh, Prime Minister of India 1977-1980) had made a statement that persons from Pakistan come to visit Bhindranwale in Nanak Niwas and return after discussions and making programs. (In doing this) that man showed bankruptcy of his mind, the death of his brain. (One might ask them): "If you know that persons from Pakistan come here to see me, you have so large a CID (Intelligence Division) why are those persons not arrested on their way? Then, they return from here. Why are they not apprehended at that time? If you (the leaders of the Government) know that they come to see me then you must be in league with them and they must be coming, getting out and returning with your permission." To this they have not given any reply in the newspapers. Sant Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) gave a very strongly worded statement today. (He said): "I shall resign the presidentship and even from the Akali Dal (if these accusations are proved to be true)." Although it has been said from this stage that Indira should resign her office, perhaps I am right when I say that only such persons do this (resign their office) who have some sense of dignity. But what is the use of saying anything to those who have no sense of shame at all? Occupying such high office, having become the Prime Minister of Hindostan, without thinking, she has herself started to accuses leading personalities. Which court will you turn to for justice? So, we have to keep our concentration to face these people. Work together. We cannot face the oppression that is being perpetrated at various places without unity.
Indira Gandhi Dismisses The Punjab Problem As A Handful Of Extremists Making Trouble.
Indira Gandhi has given a statement that the trouble in Punjab is caused by a handful of people. She has labelled them as extremists.
At first she used to say that the Akali Dal is getting it done and extremists are doing it under encouragement from the Akali Dal. When that formula did not succeed, she has given up one approach and taken up another, i.e., a handful of persons is responsible for it.
Sikhs Do Not Believe In Violence.
Perhaps she (Indira Gandhi) has forgotten that a Sikh does not believe in violence. Sikh does not believe in destroying life. A Sikh always upholds Nanak Naam Chardhi-Kala Therae Bhanae Sarbat Da Bhulla "Nanak says: God's Name is glorious; there is good for all in accepting Your will". The Sikh follows this path. She has started to say so to give us a bad name. Either her CID (Intelligence Division) has given her this impression or she is deliberately being clever.
115,000 Have Volunteered To Die For The Faith. This Is Not A Handful.
There has been an announcement from the Akal Takhat regarding 115,000 volunteers ready to die. Among them I too have come to the stage on two occasions. I too have come to the Guru's presence. All the mothers and brothers who have come there to the presence of Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, the True King; I have preached at length to them all and got them to make a pledge to become extremists. She (Indira Gandhi) says there is a handful of people. She should carefully note that 115,000 raised their arms.
Government Calls Devout Sikhs- "Extremists".
We are firm extremists but of what type? Those who act the way Government says an extremist does. Whom does the Government call extremists? A person who takes Amrit (is formally initiated into the Sikh Faith) and administers it to others; who reads Baani (Siri Guru Granth Sahib) and teaches others to read it; who preaches unity and exhorts people to work together; who turns people towards cooperation; who unites them under the saffron Nishaan Sahib (the Sikh religious flag); who unites them with Akal Takhat Sahib and Harmandar Sahib; who is desirous of seeking justice (retribution) for the dishonor to our daughters and sisters, for the spilt blood of innocent people, for the irreverence shown towards Siri Guru Granth Sahib, the True King, and exhorts others to do the same - and we have to get these rights - the present Government has started calling such people extremists. Only Sikhs Of The Guru Have Volunteered. They Are More Than A Fistful.
I had said these things when I asked people to raise their arms. He who is a Sikh of the spinning wheel and the goat, a Sikh of the Radhaswamis and Narkdharias (Nirankaris), a Sikh who waters the pipal tree and sprinkles sandhoor on the Jand tree, should not raise his arm in the presence of our Master (Siri Guru Granth Sahib). He who is a Sikh of Satguru Granth Sahib, is a friend of the Panth (the Khalsa Brotherhood), has respect for the honor of daughters and sisters, has respect for the spilt blood of the innocent and the brave, should raise his arms. This was the pledge I got from the stage. They were 115,000. She should think it over. They were 115,000. (One might say to her): "You are not the form of Guru Nanak that you can include all of them in your fist. Your fist could not even contain Jagjiwan Ram (a former Minister in the Government of India), not even Bajpai (a Hindu leader) and others. They left you and departed. How will you hold 115,000 Sikhs in your fist through mere talk?" She says there is only a handful! From one point of view it is even a good thing. So long as the fist is closed the fist is formed, it is there. When we open the hand, it becomes a slap. Fingers cannot hurt as much as a fist can. When the fingers are closed they call it a fist. You know, in our language, what the fist can do. So, Khalsa Ji, so long as our fist is closed, we are together. We desist from mutual criticism. We are Guru's Singhs and work together. Let us stop saying "I am a Congressite, I am an Akali, I am Bhindranwala, I am so and so." Giving these up, one thing should penetrate the Sikh's mind: "I am a Sikh, I want to live in Hindostan as a Sikh and not as a kesdhari Hindu (Hindu with uncut hair)." When this thing enters our mind (we shall succeed). She says "they are a handful." One hundred and fifteen thousand have made the pledge here. Some friends have registered their names with me too. Some say: "Why have they registered their names with you?" Some brothers talk like this too. I do not wish to name them, may God give them good sense. I pray to the Guru. I am not angry with them. That's all the wisdom they have. Friends have registered their names with me too. Who are the people who have done so? These were those who said:
"We are not going anywhere without you." The President, Sant Baba Harchand Singh Ji Longowal, was asked. A request was made to him:
"Baba Ji, some Singhs think like this. You should tell us (what to do). If tomorrow there is going to be a talk that (Bhindranwale is) forming his own Akali Dal, then I shall request these people to go home. But if you so order, I can register them." He said: "Get them registered." Persons between sixteen and forty years of age have been registered. We have registered older persons as well but that (list) is separate. In this age group, the count with me is thirty thousand. She says they are a handful! Garja Singh and Bota Singh (Sikh heroes from 18th century who defied the Imperial rulers) were two. It will be good if the Guru has mercy, the Satguru is benevolent, and the job gets completed in peace. We definitely are supporters of peace, but if the train once starts then it will be known whether they are a mere handful or too many even for (enclosing in a blanket) wrap.
APPEAL TO SIKHS
Stay Peaceful But Prepared.
We have to be peaceful. We have orders to stay peaceful but peacefulness alone is not enough. Stay prepared as well. Carry weapons. Work in cooperation. Give up intoxicants. Today I like to request the young men. Some are going in the group of protesters and some had come to see them off. Out of them, about sixty Singhs have today (pledged to) keep beards and to give up alcohol. I thank them and shall request them too: "Don't let things revert to what they were. Let it not happen that tomorrow you get out of jail and the day after you sit in front of a barber. You have made this pledge in Guru's presence. You have been to the (Akal) Takhat Sahib. Keep your word. May Satguru have mercy and give us wisdom."
We Have No Dissension.
In conclusion, I like to address those persons who under someone's instigation and to show the strengths of their brains have taken some such decisions that perhaps all this is Bhindranwale's job. I like to warn those people that in Gurmat (the Sikh way) such attitude is not good. I shall only say this much. They will understand. Those who have sin on their minds, start shivering on their own. Standing on this stage, I like to tell them again: "Try as hard as you wish to, there are not going to be any differences between the two of us - I and Longowal." Those people who have concocted these plans over cups of tea and over cookies, sitting in their chairs, should ponder and desist from such mischief. Times are very critical. Whichever of the two parties (to the conflict) - the Akali Dal and the Government - wavers will be routed. But the Sacrificer of His Sons (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) will have mercy. The Panth will never flinch. We have to follow the path of: nishay kar apnee jeet karo ["Resolutely may I ensure my victory"].
GOVERNMENT BRUTALITY AGAINST SIKHS
Confiscation Of Balwant Singh's Property.
Today I have also learnt about the property belonging to the family of Balwant Singh of Mukerian. Members of the Congress Party (Indira Gandhi's Party in Government) who listen to Kewal Krishan, not all but those who have become his touts just as they did at the time of (the case of) the Babbar Akalis, have harvested five acres of wheat, that had been sown (by Balwant Singh and his family), and taken it to their homes. The field has been ploughed. I did not make much mention of it thinking that from five acres perhaps they got 150 maunds (about 6 tons) and when the time comes we shall get it back. But today I have learnt that Kewal Krishan, in his pride and to assert his influence in the area, has had advertisements issued for auction of (Balwant Singh's) house and the household effects. Perhaps after two or four days bids will be accepted. I shall request the newspapermen too to try to publish this information. If they do not, then the Singhs who have come from there should definitely let people in that area know: "God's men, we have no enmity with any of you, with any Punjabi; it is out of the question with any Sikh; not with any other caste either. But I like to say this. Those people who had put a price on the heads (of Sikhs), among them were Lakhpat and Jaspat, from among the ancestors of the present day (tyrant) Kewal Krishan. They had resolved that they would completely exterminate the Sikhs from the world. Kewal Krishan is acting the same way in the region around Mukerian - that he is not going to let even a brick remain in the foundations of Balwant Singh's property. But he should remember. Who does he think he is? Lakhpat and Jaspat made a pledge. The time came. Satguru had mercy. Those who nowadays are contemptuously described as backward classes, from among these harijans, Bhai Nibhaoo Singh was motivated by Satguru Ji. When circumstances permitted, Khalsa Ji, holding on the elephant's tail, climbing from the rear onto the elephant, he beheaded the oppressor of the times just as a gourd is cut from its vine. He did not think.....(inaudible).... whatever happened to the property....(inaudible).... I like to tell Kewal Krishan specially and those of his touts who are getting ready to bid and I humbly request those who have the Sikh appearance: "Don't poke your hand into the ....(inaudible).... of this faith. You won't be able to take it out. Love the Sikh appearance. Talk about Sikhi. Have faith in Satguru and give up greed. But if, surrendering to the power of the Government, if you bid at the auction of the homes of the Singhs and try to take over their property, I give you this warning that only such brother should make a bid who was born with two heads. If anyone with one head makes a bid, he can think for himself."
Systematic Police Brutality Directed At Sikhs.
Some people say I am saying this in anger. No, this is not anger. I say this with hurt in my heart. The Government has never stripped any Hindu's daughter or sister, only those of us Sikhs are stripped; no daughter of a Hindu has been stripped and her father laid on her, only those of us Sikhs were subjected to this humiliation; no Hindu's Beloved (object of worship) has been set on fire, if there has been such a fire in this regime, it has been set to only our Beloved (Siri Guru Granth Sahib); no son of a Hindu has been detained or hung upside down, only Sikh students have been so hung; no shop belonging to any Hindu has been set on fire by the Government, only the homes of the Sikhs have been burnt down. (I speak) keeping all these things in mind. No government official has forced a cow's bones into the mouth of a son of a Hindu, tobacco has been sprinkled and cigarettes forced and tobacco spat into the mouths of only Sikh young men; if police officials have shaved off beards only Sikh boys were shaved and they were sent to Amritsar saying: "Go and tell Bhindranwale to do what he can." First they have been sent and later when they reached here there are efforts to get someone to intercede.
Detention And Harassment Of Sikhs.
I have learnt today about our Bhai Bua Singh and Narinder Singh. The sentence for both was one year in detaintion. They were to be released on the 20th. On the 19th they were taken out of jail and taken to the police station and again detained for another year. They have been detained and have been assigned to the grindstone mills (where prisoners are required to grind grain in manually driven grindstones). If they have to get out of the grindstones then, Khalsa Ji, what is the restriction? We shall have to think about it. It is a challenge to us. During British times it was said that a Sikh could not keep his turban. There is one Gajjan Singh, I do not know this friend. Only Satguru knows the sort of temperament he has. He has used such bad words towards both of them that I cannot repeat them from this stage. Why did he use them? He said: "Why do you have saffron colored scarves on your heads? If you wish to stay here in comfort, you will have to take off the saffron colored scarves. If you wish to wear saffron colored scarves, orange scarves, then you will be confined to the grindstones." So, (I like to say to him). "My friend:
This regime is not going to last forever. I shall only say that you are a son of the Sikhs - I have learnt this - you should not attack the turban and the beard and hair. The punishment for this will be very heavy. The Government may last two days, four days, or ten days. These people have to step aside some day. But keep in mind that if you think that destroying Bua Singh and Narinder Singh, or my associates, or Longowal and Bhindranwale or another few leaders will rid you of problems, it is never going to be so. So long as slavery is not shaken off the neck of our Sikh Nation, this struggle will continue."
Khalistan Issue. Sikhs Are Labeled As Communalists.
Yesterday four or five persons came to me. They asked: "Sant Ji, if Jagjit Singh Chauhan attacks Hindostan with assistance from England, America, and Canada, whom will you help?" I asked them: "Why do you have doubts?" They said: "Our business is to ask questions." I replied: "We shall support the Sikh appearance and the victim." He had thought that I would say "Jagjit Singh Chauhan or Hindostan." I had replied: "We shall support the Sikh appearance and the victim. Whoever is the victim, we shall certainly embrace him. Whoever is the oppressor, we shall destroy." Emergency was proclaimed (during 1975-1977). During the emergency, Hindus who were occupying chairs (were in power, Indira Gandhi and her party) arrested and jailed those who were victims and were just going about their ordinary business. Not even a single one of Akali workers had been arrested. But what transpired? Hindu-Sikh unity has taken deep roots in our minds, perhaps with time it will go away. But (at that time) it was very strong. With that in view, or may I say, not with that in view but following naanak naam charrdee kall tere bhaane sarbat daa bhallaa ["Nanak says: God's Name is glorious; there is good for all in accepting Your will"], a struggle was launched from Siri Akal Takhat Sahib that we are not going to let any victim remain under oppression. No Sikh had been arrested. Only Hindus had been arrested by (other) Hindus. But starting the struggle from here we got Hindus out of jail. Those whom we got out of jail we even made into Prime Minister (Reference is to Chaudhri Charan Singh). Our leaders also gave him cars and bags (of money) because we considered them (Hindus) our brothers. Today people like Charan Chaudhri (Charan Singh, Prime Minister of India 1977-1980) and others who are his associates, say that Akali Dal should be banned. Guru's men: think it over. Who is a communalist, we or they? Their people arrested them and, considering them to be your own, you went to jail to get them out of jails. Today, the Sikhs, and may I say especially the Akali Dal, have started this struggle for all Punjabis, tell me how many Hindus have gone to jail? Have even forty hundred, out of a count of 660 million gone to jail? Forty thousand of you out of a total of 17.5 million went to jail during the emergency. And they call you communalists!
APPEAL FOR UNITY AND GREETINGS TO THE GROUP OF PROTESTORS GOING TO COURT ARREST
So, I humbly submit that we have to march together, stay together, give up intoxicants and stoutly, fearlessly support the Panth. All these things that are secretly going on, don't let them create doubts in your minds. Beware of these. We are together and all of us have to march together. Detractors Within The Akali Dal.
In conclusion I like to say this once again to these people who on their own link various things with me and have made up their minds that Bhindranwale has done this and someone else has done that. (The damage done by this) will be known when the consequences of this have to be faced. In 1979 (when Sant Bhindranwale opposed the Akali Party in Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee elections), besides Longowal (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal), who is there that did not call me a lecher, a vagabond, a bad character, a debauch, a Congressite and Indira's henchman? Has (anybody) made me one? Has anyone succeeded in making me (a henchman of Indira Gandhi)? Even today I shall ask these foolish people to desist from such acts. I shall never in my life seek a chair (public office). I haven't sought it in the past and am not desirous of it in the future. I desire but one thing that those who have Singh as their name should have beards on their face and (unshorn) hair and kirpaan in their gaatras. The ladies too should have kirpaans in their gaatras. You should be perfect in Sikhi, should abstain from intoxicants, believe in the Panth's (the Khalsa Brotherhood's) glory, and maintain reverence for the saffron Nishaan Sahib (the Sikh religious flag). If you engage in the kind of things I have mentioned earlier, you will be the losers. I lose nothing. (I am like) a bird without a tail that has no fixed home. I can pick up my shorts and move on. Our business is preaching Sikh faith. If you do not stop making accusations, no harm will come to me but if you don't, someday, sitting on the stage, I shall hold you by the ear and make you stand up (and answer). At that time you will not be able to call someone's mother your aunt. I do not take tea, I do not eat meat. There is no question of my taking alcohol or Kuttha (meat prepared by slow killing of animals). Of what will you accuse me on the stage? I haven't said this off-handedly. I say this with a sense of responsibility. I have said this after thinking over it for ten months. Don't get into similar things again.
I offer my heartfelt thanks to Bibi Jaswant Kaur and Bibi Joginder Kaur Ji and all the Singhs, all the friends, in the Jatha (group of protestors) that is going. Reading false stuff in newspapers don't fall victim to doubts. The Panth is united. Sometimes it is asked: "What is the need to say the Panth is united?" It arises when, from amongst us, some brothers falling victims to newspapers, considering them to be divine voice start thinking along wrong lines. It is then that we have to say. I must also request our workers - not only mine but of the Panth - and our elders and brothers, and our speakers regarding this feeling that is creeping into our minds; that we shall give further clarification. We do not have a contract that ever since the Sikh Nation came into being till the end of the universe, we should keep providing clarifications to these people. We should now stop doing this. Any cap-wearer (Hindu) who comes to us, we should ask him: "Are you with us or not." Now we should not say: "We are with you." Now we should start asking this of everyone: "Do you wish to keep us with you or not? If you want to keep us with you give us our equal rights. If you do not want to keep us with you, give us our land. We have given 93 heads and you have given seven. If there is some hill corresponding to seven, keep it for yourselves, and leave the rest for us.
Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God).
3. BABA JARNAIL SINGH BHINDRANWALE'S SPEECH : September 20, 1983
(Speech delivered at the annual conference of the All India Sikh Students' Federation, held on the second anniversary of the martyrdom of 18 Sikhs at Chowk Mehta.)
Seated in the sacred presence of Satguru Ji, supporter of the humble, the True King; Guru's Image, Guru Khalsa Ji: all the congregation, say aloud:
Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God.)
THE MARTYRDOM OF SIKHS AT MEHTA CHOWK
Dear Khalsa Ji: Today we are assembled here in memory of the
martyrs. What was the reason for the martyrdom? What was the need for the young men to spill their blood in Mehta?
Lala Jagat Narain's Malicious Campaign.
Lala Jagat Narain used very bad language against the venerable, resident of the True Region (deceased), Singh Sahib Giani Gurdial Singh Ji Ajnoha Sahib, Jathedar of Siri Akal Takhat Sahib, and the current President of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Gurcharan Singh Ji Tohra. He even went to the extent of saying that both these Singhs, these Sikhs, were traitors to the nation and that the passports issued to enable them to go abroad should be revoked, should be canceled. Young students, on whose special invitation we are here today touching the feet of Siri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, students of the Federation, got together and considering the paper on which these mischievous comments were written to be polluted, desired to burn it. Angered by this burnt piece of paper, intoxicated by power, overcome by pride of being the rulers, these students were beaten up and cases were registered against them (by the Government). But no action was taken by us in a united, organized way. Personal differences might exist among people. But for the Sikhs, these are two positions of exalted status. One has to do with the management of the Gurdwaras and even ahead of it, at the first place, is Siri Akal Takhat Sahib. A Lala (Hindu), hardly worth a dime or a nickel, should get up and call the chief official of Siri Akal Takhat Sahib and the President of the Shiromani Committee, the religious organization, traitors to the country and we do not even notice it! We must understand that, perhaps, we are burnt with jealousy. Time went by. Again, the news came that Lala Jagat Narain wrote in his newspaper that Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib used to live like a prince and was very fashionable and fun-loving. We still slept over it.
Lala Jagat Narain's Murder And Government Harassment Of Sant Bhindranwale.
When he started to repeatedly and maliciously malign the Gurus and Singhs, some son of his mother could stand it no longer and put him (the Lala) on the train (killed him). After he was put on the train on the 9th (September 1981), on the 12th warrants for my arrest were issued. I came to know about it and arrived here in Mehta at five o'clock, early in morning, on the 14th. The cruel Government went into Chando-Kalan (the place where Sant Bhindranwale was camping on the 12th) and set fire to two busses belonging to the congregation and not to me. I was a grass-cutter at home (a poor man), the Guru's congregation had given them to me for preaching and going place to place. Both those busses were set on fire and burnt down. There were books (containing segments) of Siri Guru Granth Sahib, the True King, in them (the busses). The Singhs tried to take them out but were unable to do so because of the circumstances. The (religious) books were burnt in them (the busses) and goods worth three hundred thousand rupees were looted from the village Chando-Kalan. In Mehta, on the 16th at 4 p.m., I was served with the warrants. Upon receipt of warrants, I immediately announced that I shall surrender myself (to the authorities) for arrest on the 20th September. These words have been tape- recorded. After that announcement, people started gathering there. The police too surrounded the Gurdwara Sahib and set up positions for their sten-guns, bren-guns, and light machine-guns. In due course, responsible friends also arrived. They all came. The 20th day of (September), the day on which we are assembled here today, arrived. That day, the way I had dressed was somewhat different. Some brothers commented on it one way, some another way. The friends had each his own views. Some said that I had changed my dress out of fear. Others made other comments. Someone asked me; "What is the matter, why have you changed your manner of dress?" I humbly replied: "When someone goes to get a young man married he carries a piece of saffron cloth and wears a saffron turban. This is the normal practice in Punjab among the Sikhs. I am going to wed my bride, death. If the Chief Minister of Punjab, Zakariya (Darbara Singh), and Indira, the Queen of Hindostan have some granthi (reader of Siri Guru Granth Sahib) to read the marriage prayer, they can send him to the jail where they are going to keep me. If they want the marriage solemnized, they should send him there, I am going there fully prepared for it." That day the gathering was many times larger than it is today. All the leaders and many other responsible friends had assembled there. After making a speech at midday, in the afternoon I offered myself for arrest.
Police Massacre Innocent Sikhs.
After the arrest, when I had gone from the place, a few minutes later, to ruin the peaceful atmosphere, the cruel Government (fired upon the Singhs). Mud is thrown at me that I am too "hot". Mud is thrown at me that I am quarrelsome. Mud is thrown at me that I am an agent of the Congress (Mrs. Gandhi's party). One can only learn (the truth) when one is being broken on the wheel - whether one recites God's name or hurls abuse. It is very easy to say these (bad) things. On 20th September, I went from that place. Some brothers say this too, our poet brothers have written poems too. I have, on many occasions, humbly said this. Either we do not have enough reverence for the Guru or we are under some awkward influence. All say Jarnail Singh has done a lot. He has woken up the Nation. Many poets have also written poems about it. I humbly appeal to these poets. Instead of making poems in my name, you should first of all write poems in praise of Siri Guru Granth Sahib. Why should you do it? If the Nation is awake today it is because the day of martyrdom of Siri Guru Granth Sahib. September 14 marks the awakening of this Nation. Guru Sahib has offered himself to the fire. If the books had not been set on fire, if copies (of Siri Guru Granth Sahib) had not been set on fire, I am prepared to say with confidence we could not have achieved such an awakening. Khalsa Ji, to preserve reverence for Satguru, the Singhs reached there and peacefully served the congregation. But the cruel Government fired at them and killed the Singhs. There is a Singh, an old man from Buttaran, Channan Singh by name. His son, was a student of the 12th grade. All day he served food and milk to the congregation. When he was going home, he passed in front of the police station. He was shot and killed while sitting in the trolley (of a tractor). We do talk and rightly so, about our Hindu-Sikh unity. We have to live together. The young son of Kartar Singh of Dharde village, was sitting in his trolley when he was shot. Another was from Bolewal - Bolewal is a village near Mehta - all these villages are near Mehta. He, too, was shot and killed. The time came. The dead bodies reached Amritsar. I was not here but all of you who are sitting here must have been. It is possible that you were not here but at Mehta Gurdwara. You were not anywhere else. This happened in that time frame.
Bodies Of Sikhs Were Not Returned To Their Families.
The dead bodies were brought. You know how the post-mortem examinations (autopsies) were conducted and how the bodies were disposed off by the Government. It is not proper for me to talk about it, it is more appropriate that you speak (because Sant Bhindranwale was in jail and could not have first-hand knowledge).
The First Hijacking To Protest Bhindranwale's Arbitrary Arrest.
Time passed. I went to jail. The Nation got together. Guru Sahib had mercy. Bhai Gajinder Singh and others, sons of the Guru, hijacked a plane to protest (Sant Bhindranwale's arbitrary arrest).
SIKHS ARE SLAVES
We Are Slaves And Need To Be Free.
I appeal to our young men. Last night you had a big gathering.
You were asking as to what we are and what we have to do? The responsibility for taking decisions belongs to the Panth (the Sikhs collectively) but I shall certainly give my personal opinion. I shall not hesitate. Last night I humbly said to the young men that first I have to tell them that we are slaves. No matter how much we talk, no matter how much we boast, until it is ingrained in the mind of every son of a Sikh, of every old man, of every mother and sister, that we are slaves, we shall not be able to throw off the yoke of slavery and achieve freedom. Freedom from slavery is achieved only when a person starts to feel and understand that he would prefer death to life as a slave; when he does not consider living (as a slave) worthwhile. Only then one gets rid of slavery, never otherwise. How are we slaves? I shall devote only a small amount of time to this because it is getting quite late and the congregation has been patiently sitting since early morning. I shall tell you only the principle signs of slavery and not go into detail.
The Asian Games.
You all read the newspapers. (One news is about) the holding of the Asian Games in Hindostan and a line being drawn for the Sikh. The word Sikh is used, be he one wearing the Sikh shorts, or a sheet, or even clean- shaven. If his name is Singh, he cannot cross the line and go to Delhi through Haryana. A topiwalla (one wearing a cap), a Hindu can.
Refusal Of Entry Into India.
If a Sikh comes here from America, he is sent back from the airport, but a Hindu travelling by the same plane can reach Delhi. This is a sign of slavery. Indira Gandhi Warns Punjab Sikhs Of Reprisals Against Sikhs Outside Punjab. (Consider) the Prime Minister of India. Didn't Balbir Ji (Bharpur Singh Balbir, Editor, Akali Patrika, who had spoken before Sant Bhindranwale) say that cases have been registered? More will be registered. If the Prime Minister of India says that she likes to tell the Akalis, or to tell the Sikhs of Punjab, that they have started this agitation and are making demands for such things, they should think of what might happen to Sikhs outside (Punjab). No case is registered (against her). This is because she is born in the home of pundits. But if, from this stage or from Samundri Hall, Bhindranwala says: "Bibi Indira, intoxicated with power, there is so much pride in you that you like to warn Sikhs to think about what might happen to those outside (Punjab), you should remember too that there are only 20 Hindus to every Sikh and no more." (Congregation shouts the Jaikaara.) Singhs, don't shout the Jaikaara. I like to appeal to those who shout the Jaikaara: "What do you get out of it? You can shout the Jaikaaras after we are done and get up. First listen to all I have to say. We are slaves and (how inappropriate it is that we) are shouting slogans of victory! First get freedom. Do not cause distraction. Try to listen as to how we are slaves." I am not speaking merely in anger. I have been accused (of many things). They say: "He makes strong statements. He wishes to create trouble in the country. He wishes to destroy the relationship of nails to the flesh under the nails (reference is to Hindu-Sikh relations)." But I like to ask you today what is our relationship? Is the Prime Minister's responsibility towards the nation more or less than mine? I am an ordinary servant of the Sikhs. She has become (what she is) by your votes. I have not become a Sant by the votes of any of you. Thanks to the mercy of our Father, Guru Gobind Singh Sahib Ji, thanks to the kindness of the great man, the late Sant Baba Kartar Singh Ji Khalsa, it is due to them that I have come today on this stage. She has become (the Prime Minister) by getting the votes of the Indian public. If she says that the President (of Shiromani Akali Dal, Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) and the leaders should think about the women who wear turban or chuni (scarf) or have Kaur in their name, we are not eunuchs that we shall not respond.
We Are Sons Of Guru Gobind Singh, The Unique Man.
I am illiterate but you are many well-educated philosopher friends sitting here. If you have seen, in any book, in any historical text, in any writing, the word "man" used with the name of any founder of a faith (one who shows the way), show it to me. This word has been written solely in reference to Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib. "The incomparable man appeared, the unique warrior. Wonderful, wonderful is Gobind Singh. He is the Guru and, himself, the disciple as well." If a boy is not like his father, what do people call him? You can figure that out for yourselves later. People suspect the boy who does not take after his father. If the Father is Guru Gobind Singh Sahib and he is taunted, insults are hurled at Him, and words full of hate are used for Him, for example, that you are born out of us, you are born out of us, (reference is to the Hindu contention that Sikhs are a sect within the Hindus), that you are Brahmins; our Father has expressed Himself very firmly telling the Brahmin not to say the wrong thing and: "I am the son of a Kshatri and not of a Brahmin." They want to depict the Tenth King as a Hindu with unshorn hair. Maharaj (Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) says this will never be.
Laws Are Used To Restrain Sikhs, Not Hindus.
If I say that there is a count of twenty for each of us, a case is registered (against me) under clause 506 but not against her because she is born in the house of the pundits. If the Home Minister of Hindostan says: "Turn this Bhindranwale out of Guru Nanak Niwas within eight days," no case is registered because he is born in the house of a Brahmin. If Bhindranwala or any other (Sikh) leader says from this stage: "We are not wearing bangles. We shall make you eat iron gram (a figure of speech), you can come with all preparations," a case is registered. If Bhattacharya, born in the house of Hindus, makes a statement in the Parliament, while the case is being heard in the court in Ludhiana, that Nachhattar Singh should have been hanged, no case is registered against him. If Swami Dityadesh, a Hindu from Haryana, says: "Pick up your shorts and towels and get out of here, you Sikhs have no business to be here," no case is registered against him. The Finance Minister of Punjab, Kewal Krishan, born in the house of Brahmins, says: "We shall destroy all organizations (of Sikhs)," no case is registered. This news is about six months old. I read it myself in the Akali Patrika. If it is said: "We shall crush the Sikhs, we shall grind them up, rub them out" no case is registered. If Harbans Lal Khanna says here, on the sacred soil of Amritsar: "We are not going to let there be two or three (different religions). We shall not let a turban stay on any head. The shorts, steel bangle and kirpaan, send these to Pakistan," no case is registered.
Sikhs Are Harassed.
A Sikh gave a jeep costing 80,000 rupees, for the use of the Five Beloved Ones (Five Sikhs authorized to perform the initiation ceremony for a new Sikh). On July 17 last year, the police forcibly took it. The Singhs who were arrested in that connection, Jagir Singh, Ajaib Singh, Mangal Singh, Amrik Singh and Thara Singh, those Singhs are here sitting on this stage but the jeep is at the police station. The congregation gave a bus costing 300,000 rupees, for use in preaching. We go to bring Mata Ji Labh Kaur Ji, revered mother of our respected father (spiritual teacher, Sant Kartar Singh Ji Khalsa) Brahm Giani, great man who left us (for his heavenly abode) in the prime of his life as was ordained (by God), from Jhindwala in Muktsar, and the cruel Government catches that new bus in Muktsar, brings it to Amritsar and keeps it for a year in the police station! I want to ask those of you who say: "He says wrong things. He is hot-tempered." It was after all these excesses that I said: "If our bus is not returned by five o'clock, I shall kill five thousand Hindus in one hour." It was after we had suffered so much loss.
I DO NOT HATE HINDUS
Why did I use the word "Hindu"? Many (people) say the word "Hindu" coming from the lips of a Sant does not sound nice. When did I give a certificate that I am a Sant? To whom did I give in writing that I am a Sant? I am Jarnail Singh and my pen-name is Khalsa. But why did I use the word "Hindu"?
The Case Of Hukam Chand's Daughter.
I have no enmity with the Hindus as such. If I were their enemy, why would I rescue the daughter of a Hindu from Jalalabad. A Hindu young man forcibly kidnapped the daughter of Hukam Chand, a Hindu. In an assembly of ten thousand persons, coming to the stage, he started crying and said: "Sant Ji, you are the sewadar (servant) of the Damdami Taksaal. In old times, Sikhs used to rescue the daughters of Hindus. A Hindu has kidnapped my young unmarried daughter." If I discriminated (against Hindus), I would have said: "Get off this stage. Go and tell the Hindus (to help you)." But no, the duty of a Guru's Sikh is (expressed by the phrase): "Nanak says: Through God's Name one is ascendant; there is good for all in accepting Your will." We have always followed this. It was about 12 noon when I told him from the stage in Jalalabad, which is near Fazilka, that by five o'clock his daughter would reach his home, if his statements were true and there was no other confusion. I assigned this task to Mohinder Singh Sahianwala. Khalsa Ji, the girl was brought and handed over to the Hindu by quarter till five.
Kailash Chander's Case.
Kailash Chander owns a retail shop here. His shop was burnt down. The Retail Merchants Union asked him: "Name Bhindranwale." He did not do so. The Hindu along with two Sikhs, the three of them, came to see me in my room. He came and started to cry. I asked him: "What is the matter? Why are you crying?" He said: "My shop has been burnt down." I asked him what he wanted from me. He said: "If you give me about a hundred rupees, it will give me the excuse for making a collection." I gave him five hundred rupees.
The Burning Of Ramayana.
In Kapurthala, a copy of the Ramayana (a Hindu holy book) was burnt. The leaders of that place know about this. The Jatha (Bhindranwale's) spent 5,000 rupees in litigation over that (to get the culprits punished).
Compensation For Hindu Martyrs To Police Brutality.
On the 4th (April 1983), two Hindus were martyred in connection with the "Stop the Traffic," campaign. Shiromani Akali Dal and the Shiromani Committee paid (their families) 10,000 rupees each and the Jatha gave another 5,000 to each family. If I was an enemy of all the Hindus, where is the need for me to pay all this money? But I challenge any Hindu, any son of his mother, who might be present here today, to raise his hand if, out of the 600 million Hindu population of India, any one Hindu has gone to the home of any Sikh martyr and given a new five rupee bill to the family.
DISCRIMINATION AGAINST SIKHS
Government Is Unconcerned About Sikh Deaths.What is our relationship (with the Hindus)? Why have I used the word "Hindu"? I have not used it in anger. I shall convince you with arguments. Nearly two hundred Singhs have achieved martyrdom, perhaps the number is a few short (of 200), tell me if any servant of the Government has come to inquire. The President (of the Shiromani Akali Dal) has given a statement. There had to be an inquiry at Mehta. I do not know whether it took one or two months after (the incident) that the order for the investigation was issued. The order was given and it is three months since it (the report) was accepted. They do not release it because it goes against the police. An eighty year old Lala (Jagat Narain) died. He died on the 9th. After (only) three days, on the 12th, warrants were issued for my arrest. It is over two years since copies of Siri Guru Granth Sahib were burnt, the inquiry is still stymied. How long are we going to maintain unity? Why did I use the word "Hindu"? Nearly two hundred Singhs have died, tell me if any government official has come to any of you to inquire about it. All of them, our men, died at the hands of the police. Ashok Kumar, son of a Hindu, was killed by a police bullet in Patiala. The Home Minister came running, Indira Rani also came running. If she is so concerned about the death of one person in a count of 600 million (Hindus), why is she not concerned over the death of 200 in a count of 20 million (Sikhs)? Should one touch the place where it hurts or where you do not feel any pain? It was under these circumstances that I used this word "5,000 Hindus". You tell me, should I have used this or not? You, Guru's congregation, should give your decision. Then why do they say: "Bhindranwala speaks harsh words." Why do they say he causes division? Sikh...... Who is going to wail? One whom people go to and cry or one to whom they never go?
Jagir Singh son of Tara Singh of village Ittanwali, has been here today. His thigh was cut up and (the wound) filled with salt. These are signs of slavery that I am telling you. I had said in the beginning (I shall tell you) how we are slaves. If a Hindu dies, there is an inquiry, if a Sikh dies there is no inquiry. If a Hindu dies, the body is returned (to the family), if a Sikh dies, the body is not returned. If a Hindu dies, the Sikh is punished, if a Sikh dies, the inquiry is stopped.
Sikh Protest Is Punished As Crime.
A girl born in a house of pundits, Bibi Indira Gandhi, getting the votes of the people, became the Prime Minister of India. In 1977, a court sentenced her (to jail). She went to jail to serve time. Her associates, Pande and others, hijacked a plane. One of them was given a ticket (to contest election) for a seat in the U.P. Legislature and the other a ticket for a seat in the Bihar Legislature. But if Guru's sons, Gajinder Singh and others hijacked a plane, they are exiled. And they say our (Hindu-Sikh) relationship is like that between the nails and the flesh under them. If a plane is hijacked for a daughter of the pundits, a Hindu gets a room in an M.L.A. flat. If a Sikh hijacks a plane for the sake of his Beloved (Siri Guru Granth Sahib), while the entire Panth (united Sikh community) had unitedly started a peaceful agitation on the 4th of August (1982), like Gurbakhsh Singh did, he was given an injection to paralyze his leg. He is still in jail. Manjit Singh alias Museebat Singh, who was born in village Mehta and lived here in Amritsar, was shot and killed at the Raja Sansi airport. Tell me, Guru's Sikhs, if our Beloved Guru Granth Sahib does not have even as much respect as a daughter of the pundits, what faith do we have in our Guru? If a plane can be hijacked in protest for a daughter of the pundits, why can one not be hijacked for the sake of the Guru of the Sikhs, for the Sikhs' beards, for the Sikhs' kirpaan, and for the Sikhs' Harmandar Sahib? Of course, if the plane is burnt, if the plane is damaged, if the plane is set on fire, if any passenger on the plane is killed, if any passenger has been robbed, then all of us are sinners. Our leaders too are sinners. If a Sikh boards a plane and hijacks it to demonstrate his grief, it is called treason; if a Hindu strips a Sikh woman naked, it is patriotism! Tell me how long are we going to endure slavery? How unjust it is? How many examples of slavery have I given you? The responsibility for this is going to devolve on you.
ANANDPUR RESOLUTION: DO WE WANT IT?
I shall appeal to the young men here. In the beginning I used these words: "If a son does not take after his father, very bad words are used in referring to him, in remembering him." After I say one more thing, I am going to ask you to raise your arms. I shall have to ask you to raise your arms twice. Tell me, all of you who are assembled here, do we want the Anandpur Resolution in its entirety or not? (Congregation shouts the Jaikaara.) That is enough. It will suffice for me. If you want the Anandpur Resolution, (tell me this). If a Sikh, having been born in his home, never again steps in it, can his home ever stay lived in? All of us sitting here, where were we born? The birthplace of the Khalsa is Anandpur Sahib. It is not only the birthplace of the Khalsa, it is also the place where the Sacrificer of His Sons (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) gave His word to the Sikhs in return for the gift of Amrit. He requested: "Khalsa Ji, give Amrit to me as well." Blessed was the Guru's Sikh. He was no flatterer. What fearlessness has He given to His Khalsa! The son (spiritual son, Bhai Daya Singh, the first Sikh initiated by Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) tells the Sacrificer of His Sons: "My Beloved Father, You are welcome to take Amrit. We do not refuse it to You. But kindly tell us, bless us with an answer. You gave us Amrit in return for five heads, not for peanuts. What will you give us in return for the gift of Amrit?" Blessed is the Sacrificer of His Sons, the True King, Guru Gobind Singh Sahib. Maharaj (Siri Guru Gobind Singh Sahib) replied: "Bhai Daya Singh Ji, you have come from various places and given me five heads. If you give me the Amrit of the Khanda (double-edged sword) and Baataa (bowl of steel), the Timeless, Omnipresent (God) be my witness that I shall sacrifice all my family for you." (Congregation shouts the Jaikaara.) Khalsa Ji, a resolution has been passed at the place where the Sacrificer of His Sons gave us His word, the promise to sacrifice His biological children for the sake of His spiritual ones, then, all of us, and I shall specially say this to all the young men assembled here, to go over your faces with your hands. Have we ever entered Anandpur, our home? Are our beards intact? Have we got our kirpaans? Do we remember Guru's Word (the daily prayer) by heart? Do we avoid alcohol? If a person has never entered his home, how will anyone allow him to fit it up with boards, lay chips in the floor and install windows? If you want the Anandpur Resolution, first enter your home, Anandpur. Take Amrit, then you will certainly get it (the Anandpur Resolution).
Do not let the newspapers get you into doubts. I submit to you that many efforts are being made to take off the Taksaal's turban (to malign the Taksaal). One trick has especially come to my attention. What is it? It is one of letters. Letters have been received in Delhi, Calcutta, Bombay, Qadiaan, Mianwind, Taran Taran Sahib, at all these places. Yesterday or perhaps it was the day before, Dilgir Singh Shah, and Hari Singh Arewala came to me in the form of a Panchayat (deputation of respectable persons). They brought along one Dilaram, a pundit. They said: "Sant Ji, he has said nothing." I said: "What have I said to him?" They said: "He received a letter." I asked: "What is the matter?" They said: "The letter came and nobody could eat after that." I asked: "Were there any signatures on it?" They said: "Long live Bhindranwale was written on it." Khalsa Ji, this is out and out a mischief. These are attempts to insult the Taksaal.
Some Call Me An Agent And A Traitor.
Who is it that keeps calling me an agent of the Congress, a traitor (to the nation)? The Government has initiated these plots to create dissensions and divisions in the Panth, to make us fight among ourselves, in order to preserve their own chairs (positions of power). We have to guard against these (schemes). Tell me if administering Amrit (initiating people into the Sikh Faith), teaching people to live by the Rehat (Sikh code of conduct), teaching them to read Guru's Word, getting them to unite under the saffron Nishaan Sahib, uniting them with Siri Guru Granth Sahib, uniting them with Akal Takhat Sahib and Harmandar Sahib, to be desirous of demanding, and urging the young men to demand, justice for the lost honor of our daughters and sisters, for the blood of the innocents, and for insults against the Satguru, and declaring support for the Panth, not surreptitiously but openly, if all this is the work of an agent of the Congress, then what is the business of the others? If this is the work of an agent, I am an agent. If this is the work of a bad man, I am bad. If this is the work of a Jan Sanghi (a member of the Jan Sangh, a radical Hindu political party), I am a Jan Sanghi. If this is the work of a Kali, I am a Kali. If this is the work of an Akali, in that case, I am already an Akali to start with. Joining the service of the Five Beloved Ones, I have administered Amrit to up to ten thousand persons, after getting them to make a pledge in the presence of Satguru, in one day. Even then they call me an agent. I felt deeply hurt last night. A person came from England. The man for whose sake we have been ready to lay down our lives, the man regarding whom I had stood on this stage and challenged the Government that if any official of the Government, the Police, kills Jaswant Singh Thekedar on whose head the government had placed a reward of 50,000 rupees, the Sikh Nation is still alive and will take revenge. And those people, today they go to England and say that Bhindranwala has joined the Congress. Today, with folded hands, I appeal to you young men. If news is published in my name or in the name of leaders and other responsible persons, do not pay attention to the newspapers. Giving up chasing the newspapers seek protection and support from Siri Guru Granth Sahib - "O Nanak, falsehood will be destroyed, in the end Truth will survive." The Government will use many such tricks. It is going to try every which way, even by buying some of us over.
SIKHS ARE UNITED
Humbly, I shall say one more thing. I am not a proud person. In the presence of Satguru, begging your pardon, I like to say this. May Guru Granth Sahib Ji protect me from pride. But do remember one thing. There have been many agitations by the Akali Dal. There have been many martyrdoms. The Akali Dal has represented the Sikh nation, is doing it and will continue to do so. But keep one thing in mind. Sant Ji (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal) is sitting here, he will tell you. Other leaders are sitting here too. They will also tell you. Ever since the Akali Dal came into existence, in no movement have all organizations, all associations, unitedly and completely supported the Panth. Individually, it is possible that a Jatha was sent from one place and another from another place. But what has happened this time is that when the Morcha was started, a meeting was held in Samundri Hall. Thirty great men, leaders whom the world knows, leaders of Kar Seva (voluntary labor at Gurdwaras), Keertanias (singers of verses from Siri Guru Granth Sahib), those who do Katha, and from other places, people with saffron clothes, all came. All made a pledge. Then why are we wavering? (Why do we think) that we might be bought, we might fall, we might be cheated. Don't we faith in anyone? I had (on a previous occasion) humbly said this to you from Akal Takhat Sahib. I say that today as well. I have already made this pledge many times in my life. I do that again today. If I ever become President of the Shiromani Akali Dal, if I ever become President of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee - I am talking about myself and not other Singhs - if I ever attain to these offices, if I ever become an M.L.A. (Member of the Legislative Assembly) or a minister (in the Government), or I become an M.P. (Member of the Parliament), it will be your shoes and my head (I shall deserve a shoe-beating by you). My sole business is to persuade those young men who cut their hair and beards, follow people who worship living human gurus, take intoxicants, and take to wrong ways, with folded hands, making them my brothers, to unite them with Guru Granth Sahib and with the Panth. This is my job.
WE ARE UNITED ON ANANDPUR RESOLUTION
Regarding the Anandpur Resolution, I, Dictator Sahib (Sant Harchand Singh Longowal), Sukhjinder Singh, Tohra Sahib, Talwandi Sahib, and all other leaders have declared from this stage, it has been recorded for television too, that we shall not negotiate for anything even an iota less than the Anandpur Resolution. If things keep going all right, let them go on. If anyone sits down or lies down or is bought over, I have already assured you that I fear no one nor do I frighten anyone. All responsible persons have also said that whatever decision is taken will be taken here (in this congregation). Then why do you fear? If, after making a statement here, someone goes back on it, I shall certainly be your watchdog because I eat your food and salt. I shall certainly beat your drum to this extent. (I shall say): "Khalsa Ji, here is a copy of the Anandpur Resolution; these are the things written in it; these are the people who passed this Resolution; this is what we have achieved; and so much remains to be done; you tell us what we should do." At that time the responsibility (for a decision) will be yours. Then why do you fear? A Lala (Hindu reporter) gives a report that they (the Sikh leaders) had a fight. Another reports something else. It is true there can be differences of opinion with someone. However, where the Anandpur Resolution is involved, where the uncut hair and beards are involved, where the Sikh appearance is involved, do not have any worry. God will have mercy (upon us).
APPEAL TO YOUTH
If we have to shake off slavery, and you always keep asking (me) for a program, I shall humbly make this submission. I am saying this as an individual, the Panthic program will be given by the Panthic leaders, I am not consulted in those decisions. But I shall appeal to you. If you want to shake slavery of your necks, first enter your home, Anandpur. Then in each village, have one motorcycle. three riders, and three new revolvers. Whatever legal action is taken against me on this account, I shall bear it even if it means that I am skinned alive, chopped joint by joint, or burnt alive. One motorcycle, three new revolvers and three young men in each village. We are not going to do this to kill people. For a Sikh it is a great sin to keep weapons and kill any one. However, Khalsa Ji, it is an even greater sin to have weapons and not to seek justice. Now you have to think over how to use these weapons. If you want to shake slavery off your necks, you have to adopt this way, whether you do it today or some time later. But do not do this: that having got a motorcycle, you go and rob a hawker, a rickshaw puller, or a shopkeeper, or commit burglary. This is not Sikh principle. Some people say I should present a strong program. I give you this program. Take it. When you return after completing it, I shall embrace the one who gets justice against those who set fire to copies of Siri Guru Granth Sahib, those who stripped our daughters naked and paraded them in bazaars and villages, those who burnt Kulwant Singh Nagoke with hot iron rods; he who gets justice for these martyrs. Escaping from there is your job, protecting you here is mine. Here is a program, take care of it. (Congregation shouts the Jaikaara (slogan of victory). I gave this program at a meeting of intellectuals too and I have given it to you as well. Now any friend who wants to ask me for a new program, should first come back after completing this job and then ask me. The Panthic program that is common to all of us will be given to you by the Panthic leaders whenever they have their deliberations.
Until we are united, until we stand under the saffron Nishaan Sahib (Sikh religious flag), until we have unflinching faith in Siri Guru Granth Sahib, Khalsa Ji, we shall certainly get beatings.
Government Desecrates Our Temples.
You have (perhaps) not seen pictures of Indore. I saw a few in a newspaper. They also left television recordings with me as well as with the leaders. In that incident how badly they treated people? Sikhs were caught by the hair and thrown down. Amnritdhari (initiated into the faith) Sikhs were thus thrown down. And they committed many other atrocities, against Sikhs, which cannot be mentioned from this stage. I appeal to you. There is this talk about (Hindu-Sikh) unity, fulfill it, and implement whatever program is decided upon by Panthic leaders. But if we have to shake off slavery, complete this program and remain in good spirits.
Restore Punjabi Language To Its Rightful Status.
At the time of the first speech, Bhullar Sahib (General Jaswant Singh Bhullar) said something about the Hindi-Punjabi issue. I humbly submit that I too have been to other states, though for fourteen months or so I have not been able to do that. On every (sign)board, the signs are in English, Hindi and Urdu. Punjabi is nowhere. And, here (in Punjab), if Punjabi is written, it is below all others. Young men, this is your job. I am helplessly sitting here. If the time comes and I can come out and move about among you, if life permits and I get the opportunity to dust your shoes, I shall perform whatever service you assign me. At this time I have made this appeal to you.
Weighing The Killers Of The Nirankari Baba In Gold.
There is some new talk. I shall wind up (my speech) after saying this about it. They say: "Bhindranwala has many times said from the stage, he keeps lying, that he will weigh the killers of Gurbachna (the Nirankari Baba Gurbachan Singh) in gold." I say this today too that I shall weigh them in gold. (Congregation shouts the Jaikaara.) But when shall I weigh them? After they have been acquitted. If any son of his mother says that they should be weighed earlier, (I ask him) to bring him (the alleged killer) from wherever they have him. I shall not be my father's son if within seven days I do not weigh him in gold. Consider me not my father's son but some sort of a mix. But there are times when there are constraints. Police people asked me. It is not that I just boast from this stage, I said the same thing when I was in police custody. They asked me: "Do you have the gold with which you are going to weigh Ranjit Singh and Kabul Singh?" I replied: "Do you have Ranjit Singh? You give me Ranjit Singh, I shall give you the gold." They said: "From where are you going to get the gold?" I said: "The same place from where you will bring Ranjit Singh." Talk is easy. It is much harder to fulfill what one says.
Young men, with folded hands, I beseech you. Last night you asked me for time (to see me). Speakers before me have told you this. Now I too appeal to you with folded hands. Until we enter our home, until we have kirpaans in our gaatras, shorts as our wear, Guru's word on our tongues, and the Khanda (double-edged sword) in our hands, we shall get beatings. It is now up to you whether you wish to save yourselves from the beatings tomorrow, or you turn to the right path after getting the beatings for another six months or a year. This decision is in your hands.
Advice To Amrik Singh.
Regarding the (All India Sikh Students') Federation elections that have been held today, I shall quote a line. Do not draw the wrong meaning from it. I say this because it happened to me. The one who has gone through it knows better. Farid Ji has said these words: "When she was unmarried, she was excited (about marriage). Upon marriage, (she realized) there were many responsibilities. Farid, she feels sorry that she cannot become unmarried again." (There was a time) when I used to call the Sant (Sant Kartar Singh Khalsa Bhindranwale, Sant Bhindranwale's mentor) my father, was enjoying life, and boasted a lot. But since the day I, through misfortune, came to this position (Jathedar of the Damdami Taksaal) - I do not cry over it but they do not let me rest by day or by night. (Regarding) this responsibility I shall certainly tell Amrik Singh. In Satguru's presence the Panth has appointed you. The young men have honored you. I never had any doubts (about your ability). However, because of my being in the position held by the great man (Sant Kartar Singh Khalsa Bhindranwale), it is my duty to say this. Now that you have taken on this responsibility, you should have the attitude: "My head might be cut off, but may I never lose my faith as a Sikh." We must not stray from this.
Be Good Sikhs. I say this to the young men. You came and met me last night. I have seen this many times. Their condition as I have heard from common people is that they say: "Even if I have to give up my faith, may a beard never grow on my face." I do not know on whose face you wish it to grow? I appeal to you. You have come here today. Go with (the resolve to keep) hair and beard unshorn. Give up alcohol. You may postpone taking Amrit (initiation into the faith) for a few days. Don't take it as a concession. I have said this because some of you are here for the first time. I do not want it said that I forcibly get you to wear kirpaans. But if you do not like the beard you should pray here: "The True King, make us into women and make women into men. Make this exchange." Then you will not grow a beard nor will the barber rub his blade on his shoe and apply it to your face. Nor would we preachers have to worry our heads. You have to decide whether you wish to become old women or young.
Concluding, I congratulate the (All India Sikh Students') Federation and the martyrs of Mehta. About the souls of those Gurmukhs (Guru's men), I pray at the feet of Satguru and with all my heart offer them my gratitude. But the true eulogy will be offered when we shall have fulfilled the responsibility of destroying those who shot them dead. At that time, to my understanding, the true eulogy will have been offered. If in the course of my speech I have erred, please forgive me. The Dharam Yudh Morcha (The congregation shouts the Jaikaara) - Brothers, hold yourself, Singhs, hold yourself, brothers, no Jaikaaras. The Dharam Yudh Morcha that is going on, don't let slackness of any kind enter it. We have to continue sending Jathas (groups of protesters to court arrest) in the same fashion. If Guru wishes, we shall overcome.
Vaheguru Ji ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Ji ki Fateh (The Khalsa belong to God, Victory belongs to God).
(Translated from the original in Punjabi by Ranbir S. Sandhu, Sikh Religious and Educational Trust, P.O. Box 1553, Dublin, Ohio 43017)