Punjab today witnessed another historic occasion with the beginning of fortnight long unique “Dharmik Darshan Yatra” for displaying the holy relics of great Sikh gurus, Guru Hargobind Sahib ji , Guru Teg Bahadur ji and Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji, amidst traditional “Khalsai Jaho Jalal” from historic Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran Sahib.
This special religious procession is being jointly organised by the Punjab Government and SGPC. “Fakhar-e-Qaum” and Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal, Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal, Jathedar of Sri Akal Takht Sahib Giani Gurbachan Singh and SGPC President Jathedar Avtar Singh flagged off the yatra with the Ardas by the Jathedar of Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib Giani Mall Singh in the presence of thousands of devotees converged there from every nook and corner of the state.
In his message to the Sikh Community Jathedar Sri Akal Takht Sahib Giani Gurbachan Singh called on the people to work for the elimination of social evils especially the drugs. He also hailed the efforts of Punjab Government, SGPC and Shiromani Akali Dal for organising this sacred Yatra which would give a rare opportunity to Sangat to have a glimpse of the holy relics of Sikh Gurus for the first time. The Jathedar also called upon the Sikh Sangat to be the part of upcoming 350th foundation year of Sri Anandpur Sahib, which would be celebrated from June 17 to 19.
In his address, the Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal, while describing this as a humble tribute to great Gurus’, said that ” it would not only provide an opportunity to the people to have a glimpse of the holy relics of Guru Sahib but would also propagate the Sikh ethos of fighting against tyranny, oppression and injustice.
Describing Punjab as a land of Gurus, Saints and seers, Mr. Badal said that Punjab government was committed to preserve as well as propagate the great heritage and already had set up a unique Virasat-e-Khalsa complex depicting the history of great Gurus and journey of Sikh community, Chotta and Vadda Ghallughara memorials at Kahnuwan Chhamb and Kup Rohira, Fateh Minar -a war memorial of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur. He said that the sole objective of setting up of these memorials was to keep abreast our younger generations about glorious past and rich legacy of Sikh panth.
Likewise, Mr. Badal said that in consonance with the Sikh ideology of ‘Sarbat Da Bhalaa’ (Welfare of entire mankind) our government was refurbishing the sacred places associated with all religions by constructing state-of-the art memorials at Ram Tirath (Valmiki Ashram), Guru Ravidass Memorial at Khuralgarh (Hoshiarpur), Baba Jiwan Singh (Bhai Jaita Ji) memorial at Sri Anandpur Sahib, Baba Moti Ram Mehra Memorial and others with great reverence. Apart from these the state government was also constructing ‘Jang-e-Azaadi’ memorial to showcase the supreme sacrifices and enormous contribution made by the Punjabis in national freedom struggle.
Speaking on the occasion, Deputy Chief Minister of Punjab and President of Shiromani Akali Dal Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that it was a historic day for the humanity and also urged the SGPC to take this Yatra to the adjoining states like Rajasthan, Haryana and Delhi etc. Calling upon the religious bodies to work in a more efficient manner to make aware the young generation about the values and traditions of Sikh Panth, Mr. Badal said that only those communities survive, which cherish the memories of their martyrs. He said that “Sikhs are the smallest community across the globe but the entire world acknowledge us as a martial race”. He also said that due to the personal efforts of the Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal that the great monuments like Virasat-E-Khalsa , Chappar Chiri War Memorial , Chotta and Wadda Ghalughara were established and the present holy relic Yatra was also in the sequence of the perpetuate of rich historic legacy.
Earlier Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal , Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal also paid obeisance at Gurdwara Dukh Niwaran Sahib.
Secretary General of Shiromani Akali Dal Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and Baba Balbir Singh President of Budha Dal also addressed the gathering.
It may me mentioned here that this Yatra would cover the cities Patiala, Nabha, Bhawanigarh, Sangrur and Barnala on its inaugural day , following Barnala, Mansa, Maur and Talwandi Sabo on May 7, Talwandi Sabo, Bathinda, Malout and Sri Muktsar Sahib onMay 8, Sri Muktsar Sahib, Kotakpura, Faridkot, Ferozepur and Wazidpur on May 9, Wazidpur, Moga, Kot Isse Khan, Zira, Makhu and Harike on May 10, Harike, Patti, Bhikhiwind, Jhabaal and Tarn Taran on May 11, Tarn Taran, Jandiala, Baba Bakala, Chowk Mehta and Amritsar on May 12 besides having a stay at Amritsar on May 13. On the very next day the Yatra would resume from Amritsar to Batala, Sri Hargobindpur, Kahnuwan and Chota Ghalughara, on May 14, Chota Ghalughara, Gurdaspur, Mukerian, Dasuya and Hoshiarpur on May 15, Hoshiarpur, Tanda, Bhogpur, Kartarpur, Kapurthala, Sultanpur Lodhi (via Talwandi Choudharian) on May 16, Sultanpur Lodhi, Malsian, Nakodar, Jalandhar and Phagwara on May 17, Phagwara, Ludhiana and Fatehgarh Sahib on May 18, Fatehgarh Sahib, Mohali, Kharar, Morinda, Chamkaur Sahib and Ropar onMay 19 and Ropar, Sri Anandpur Sahib (Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib) on May 20.
The holy relics which were being displayed in a specially designed 15 meter long bus for devotees includes three different swords, a set of hair with comb, one turban, one chola, one whip, one bunch of five arrows, one siri sahib (small three inches kirpan), one spear with wooden handle, one small plain steel spear, one big sword and one sword with the word ‘Sat Sri Akal Guru Teg Bahadur’ the 1713 Samvat (1656) inscribed on its blade.
Besides this, one manuscript written in Guru Gobind Singh ji’s own hand writing would also be displayed. To facilitate the devotees at night the bus have 13 screens across the body which would showcase the holy relics and their history by a film.
The prominent amongst present on the occasion included Cabinet Minister AjitSingh kohar, Dr. Daljit Singh Cheema, Mr. Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, Mr. Janmeja Singh Sekhon, Mr. Sohan Singh Thandal, Mr. Surjit Singh Rakhra, Jathedar Tota Singh, former president of SGPC Bibi Jagir Kaur, CPS N.K.Sharma and Pawan KumarTinu other dignitaries from different walks of life.