Tarna Dal Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh Harianvelan, Misssal Shaheedan
Related Article : http://www.panthic.org/news/125/ARTICLE/2892/2006-11-08.html
Yuba City, CA - India, also known as one of the most corrupt countries in the world, is rapidly exporting dishonesty and deception into the west via its émigré population. The lack of moral and ethical standards has become the trademark of many who connect to its culture and identity. Their press is no exception.
Last week full page newspaper advertisements were taken in many Punjabi tabloids across North America, that attempted to discredit Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh of Panth Akali Tarna Dal, Missal Shaheedan. The allegations included:
(1) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh was a “slave” of Parkash Badal
(2) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh served langar to notorious Ajit Poohla in Jail.
(3) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh was responsible for the chaos that occurred on the 400th anniversary of the Sirjana Divas of Sri Akal Takht Sahib.
(4) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh requested Sri Akal Takht Sahib to excommunicate Simranjit Singh Mann.
These allegations were then used as a basis for an unprovoked attack on the Jathedar. Some of these very same Punjabi tabloids not too long ago shamelessly printed paid advertisement by the followers of Rapist Baba Mann Pehowa stating that the baba was given a “clean chit” by Sikh Takhts and allowed to restart his international parchar. The Sikh community is well aware that Pehowa Baba was never given any clearance by the Takhts, yet those papers whose sole income is based on advertisements, without any conscience printed the false statements of his followers.
Drama of an Attempted Attack
The misinformation does not stop here, according to some of these Punjabi ‘news sources’, on Saturday evening, November 4th, the day before the annual Yuba City Nagar Kirtan, some 100 individuals congregated at Gurdwara Terra Buena to stop Baba Nihal Singh from speaking on the stage. Baba Nihal Singh had been doing katha there for the entire week.
According to those ‘news reports’, upon seeing Baba Nihal Singh leaving the Gurdwara residence rooms and walking towards the diwan, a crowd gathered around him and began to question and shout such things such as “We want to speak to you. You stopped Maan from speaking and you acted like a lion, now where is your sword?”
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh on Guru Granth Sahib Ji's main float during Nagar Kirtan
According to eyewitnesses interviewed by Panthic Weekly, there were no more than 15-20 people present, and because Jathedar Nihal Singh was on his way to the diwan he told the individuals that he was willing to sit down and talk to them afterwards. The crowd then became unruly, and several individuals then attempted to strike Jathedar Nihal Singh, yet none really succeeded. Privately, they claim to have hit him "half a dozen times." Not having the guts to face him directly, one person is reported to have thrown a shoe at the Jathedar from a distance. Immediately the culprits ran away fearing reprisal from the Gurdwara management and supporters of Jathedar Nihal Singh.
According to one eyewitness “About 15-20 of these guys tried to force themselves on the two Nihang Singhs, but they could not do much of anything, and in a matter of a few seconds these protesters ran away. They failed miserably in causing any harm to the Nihang Singhs. It was a setup, they had their own press people there to film this, but their plans failed.”
Reportedly, many of these protestors yelled profanities such as “Harinvelan Murdabad”, yet they failed to undestand that Harianvelan is the name given by the Seventh Patshah Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji to the sacred site of a historic Gurdwara Sahib in the district of Hoshiarpur.
Sheepish Punjabi Press
Interestingly, the Punjabi papers have reported that Baba Nihal Singh was beaten up badly by some unknown persons in the crowd. It is now obvious that these “unknowns” are ones who, along with the Punjabi press, acted out this drama: first with the degrading advertisements, then with the drama to create the fictitious news of Baba Nihal Singh being “beat up.”
Many of the protestors were fighting amongst themselves because their so-called leadership ran away before anything even happened. The dirty politics played by such indiviudals in Gurdwara elections is well known to everyone. The local Punjabi papers play well into their hands, in fact, many are run directly by these types of individuals.
Interestingly, when Col. Sandhu was not allowed to speak freely by the Stockton Gurdwara Management last month, these very papers purposely omitted that important incident, due to their political allegiances with one another.
Interview with Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh, Tarna Dal
Upon hearing of the incident in Yuba City, Khalsa Press staff felt it necessary to secure an interview with Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh, and others so the true facts can been obtained regarding this event and the reality of allegations put forth by Jathedar’s detractors.
Khalsa Press, the first news organization to interview him after this incident, queried Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh about the serious allegations against him in the advertisements that appeared in the Punjabi papers, and regarding the incident in Yuba City; he openly discussed the allegations and the events with our staff.
The Jathedar denied any such incident occured as was represented by the Punjabi press. Visibily, PW staff did not see a single scratch or bruise on the Jathedar's face or neck, as claimed by his detractors.
He also discusses the events of the the 400th Sirjana Divas of Sri Akal Takht Sahib, at Manji Sahib. Perhaps this is the first time he has dicussed with the press what actually took place on that historic day. Readers will be surprised to know who is really at fault.
Here are some of the excerpts from the interview:
Jathedar Ji, what are your thoughts about the following allegations:
(1) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh was a “slave” or supporter of Parkah Badal.
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh: Panth Akali Taruna Dal, Missal Shaeedan is a religious and panthic organization, and it holds no affiliations with any particular individual or political entities. The Dal’s main focus is Sikhi parchar, Amrit Sanchar, to maintain the sanctity and respect of Guru Granth Sahib Ji as our Guru and parchar of Bani and Bana. I have never supported, or promoted Parkash Sinh Badal or any other politician; nor do we lobby for votes for anyone. That is not the role of our Dal. It is easy to make such statements about anybody, but one has to know the facts first.
(2) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh served langar to Poohla in Jail.
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh: First of all Poohla is not a Nihang Singh, he is a badmash (scoundrel) and a high ranking police officer whose group has committed crimes and killed many Singhs. He has harmed Tarna Dal more than any other organization. All Nihang Dals have openly stated this information many years ago. We have absolutetly no affiliations with this person. Why would we support such an evil man? If anyone can prove that I have provided him langar in Jail, then I will offer my neck to them to be cut off.
(3) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh was responsible for the chaos that occurred on the 400th anniversary of the Sirjana Divas of Sri Akal Takht Sahib.
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh: A grave mistake was made by those who created a ruckus on that day, and serious beadbi in presence of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji occurred due to the fighting between Mann’s people and the SGPC. It was our duty to stand up for the sanctity of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. We did it out of respect of our Guru and not on orders of Badal or anyone else. It is every Sikh’s duty to prevent such beadbi.
Unfortunate Events on 400th anniversary of Akal Takht Sahib Sirjana Divas
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh provided an eyewitness lucid account of the events that occurred at Manji Sahib Gurdwara on July 2nd of 2006, during the 400th anniversary of the Sirjana Divas of Sri Akal Takht Sahib. The Jathedar and other Nihang Singhs from Harianvelan came to attend this historic function, but arrived late due to the distance they had to travel from Gurdwara Sahib Harianvelan to Amritsar Sahib. In fact, as he barely made it to Manji Sahib Diwan hall, his time had arrived to congratulate the attending Sikh Sangat on this auspicious occasion.
According the Jathedar, he paid his respects to the Sangat, and sat back down near the Parkash of Guru Granth Sahib Ji. He noted many prominent political leaders and all five Jathedars of the Takhts were in attendance. The dais from where speakers addressed the congregation was close to the Parkash of Guru Granth Sahib Ji.
Soon, Bhai Ram Singh, who was seated next to Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh, complained that their party’s leader Sardar Simranjeet Singh Mann was not allowed to speak at this venue. According to the stage roster, initially Simranjeet Singh Mann was to speak but his address had been cancelled due to political reasons. Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh asked Bhai Ram Singh to stay clam, but shortly afterwards commotion started on stage and escalated very quickly.
Mann and Makkar Fiasco
|"Makkar and Mann grasped the other’s hair - all this in the presence of Guru Granth Sahib Ji."|
It started after Avtar Singh Makkar began to address the Sangat, and Sardar Simranjeet Singh Mann suddenly grabbed the microphone from Makkar who was speaking at the time. A sudden scuffle broke out and in the struggle Makkar and Mann shamelessly knocked each other’s dastars off. Their kes (hair) opened up and each grasped the other’s hair - all this in the presence of Guru Granth Sahib Ji.
More people rushed in and, with all the collective motion, started shaking the area where Guru Granth Sahib Ji was parkash. There was imminent danger of someone falling on top of Guru Granth Sahib Ji, and possibly Guru Sahib Ji’s saroop falling from the hustle and bustle of the melee that ensued. In this pandemonium, several the SGPC and the Akali leaders had removed each other’s dastars.
|"Several men from the Mann camp grabbed some of the shastars being displayed before Guru Granth Sahib Ji and one of them attempted to cut the strings holding up of the chandoa of Sri Guru Granth Sahib, and one even slashed a kirpan into the chandoa."|
It was also reported that several men from the Mann camp grabbed some of the shastars being displayed before Guru Granth Sahib Ji and one of them attempted to cut the strings holding up of the chandoa of Sri Guru Granth Sahib, while another even slashed a kirpan into the chandoa. The Takht Jathedars and others witnessing all this, did absolutely nothing. This is when Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh and the Taruna Dal Nihang Singhs decided that things had gone too far and that someone could fall on top of Guru Granth Sahib Ji any time. Out of respect, they circled the area of Guru Ji’s parkash to prevent any further beadbi. They did draw their shastars out of respect of Sri Guru Granth Sahib and to keep the hooliganism at bay, but did not use them at any time against anyone.
A decision was made by the Nihang Singhs and others that Guru Granth Sahib Ji’s saroop needed to be moved out of this chaos. Sukhassan of Guru Granth Sahib Ji was quickly done to move the Holy Saroop to the safety of the Sukhasan room. In haste, and due to the dangerous fluid situation, the required Ardas and Hukamnama could not be done.
Guru Granth Sahib Ji’s saroop was taken to the Sukhasan place, and an Ardas was performed afterwards. When Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh and others returned back the Manji Sahib hall, they witnessed Sardar Mann and his supporters still on stage loudly shouting slogans, and distributing siropays. While all this was going on, the Takht Jathedars helplessly watched this fiasco in silence.
Jathedar Nihal Singh and Mann after beadbi of Guru Granth Sahib at Manji Sahib
Even after all the beadbi had occurred, Sardar Mann felt it was more important to shout slogans and receive siropas rather than worry about the respect of Guru Granth Sahib Ji. It was at this point that Baba Nihal Singh, deeply perturbed by what had happened in the presence of Guru Granth Sahib Ji and by Sardar Mann’s unnecessary actions, pointed his finger at Mann and stated “You have committed a very great sin here, and disrespected Guru Granth Sahib Ji.” Sardar Mann’s selfish answer was that he was not given time. This even was filmed by the national media, and photos of this conversation were plastered across the pages of Punjab dailies the next day.
(4) That Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh requested Sri Akal Takht Sahib excommunicate Simranjit Singh Mann.
Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh : I never made such a request, if anyone can prove this then they need to show us the evidence. On the contrary, I cautioned the Takht Jathedars that serious beadbi of Guru Granth Sahib Ji had occurred and this must be brought forth to the Sangat. In fact, I criticized the management of allowing politicians such as Parkash Badal and Kuldip Nayar to speak on this occasion while Simranjit Singh Mann was being barred.
Day of Forgiveness
On July 21st, “Paschatap Divas” was held where Akhand Patt Sahib was held, and Simranjeet Singh Mann and others presented themselves and asked for forgiveness.
Many of Mann’s supporters feel that he had done no wrong, and did not need to appear for “Paschatap Divas”, yet Mann knew the beadbi had occurred partly due to his own actions, and appeared at Sri Akal Takht Sahib as any Sikh should if requested.
Condemnation of Yuba City Incident:
Although the Punjabi tabloids have overly sensationalized the details of the Yuba City incident, nevertheless there has been uniform condemnation of the attempted attack. The feeling amongst the general public is that this is something being orchestrated by the Indian intelligence agencies to create further tension amongst the Sikhs in the West.
Panthic organization, Khalsa Alliance has strongly condemned the cowardly actions of those few individuals who have misled the public about Jathedar Baba Nihal Singh. According to Khalsa Alliance, “These newspapers are in cahoots with these mischief makers. In fact, they tried to associate and misuse the Khalsa Alliance's name in connection with events in Yuba City. What Sikhi discipline are these people upholding?”
The Khalsa Alliance representative continued : “They say they went there to talk to the Jathedar, he offered to talk, and nevertheless they attempted to attack him. Having failed the attempt they then ran away. Sardar Mann’s dastar was removed by Makkar and by Maan’s own actions. They themselves are responsible for this beadbi in front of Guru Granth Sahib. What kinds of leaders pull each other’s hair in the presence of their Guru on such a historic occasion? Nothing justifies these actions. These people tried to take it out on the Tarna Dal Jathedar ? Where is their logic for this unprovoked attack? Why aren't they saying anything to Akali Dal Badal members who roam about freely here? Everyone knows that these protestors wine and dine with Badalites, and have business relationships together. If they really cared about Sardar Mann, would they be doing such things?”
“The Nihang Singhs did the right thing for protecting the further beadbi of Guru Granth Sahib. Unlike these politicians and Takht Jathedars, they had the decency to stand up for what is right regardless of how politically correct it was. In the end of the day, we are accountable to our Guru, and not these manmukhs.”
“They talk about removing people’s dastars, yet they don’t understand the value of the dastar. This dastar and the beard belongs not to Makkar, Mann, or Vendanti, it belongs to Guru Gobind Singh Ji. If they had any self respect they would realize that a Sikh never touches the kes/beard or Dastar or another Sikh in anger, this maryada has been followed by the Sikh Panth for centuries in times of war and peace and on the battlefields."
Even in Gatka this rule is strictly applied to. Only those who have no understanding of Gursikhi would violate it.” stated the Khalsa Alliance representative.