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Seminar on Interfaith Understanding & World Peace
The Punjabi University, Patiala organised an International seminar on Interfaith Understanding and World Peace on March 2-4, 2010 at Dr Harbans Singh Encyclopedia of Sikhism Department. Its first day morning session was presided over by Bhai Ashok Singh Bagrian, Ex-President, Institute of Sikh Studies. The seminar was inaugurated by the Prof Qazi Nurl Islam, World Religions and Culture Department, University of Dhaka (Nepal). The distinguished scholars like Dr Jaspal Singh, VC, Punjabi University, Patiala, Dr Paramvir Singh, Dr Bhuvan Chandel, Dr Jodh Singh, Dr Swaraj Singh, Dr Shashi Bala of Amritsar and many other had been participated in the Seminar.
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Knighthood for UK’s First Sikh Judge
London, PTI. Mota Singh, who is the UK’s first Sikh and Asian judge, has been knighted by the British Queen.
London based Singh, who is also a Queen’s Counsel, has been knighted in the Queen’s New Year Honours List for “services to the Administration of Justice, community relations and to the Voluntary Sector”. His decision to wear a white turban in court, instead of a wig, came to be seen as a sign of multicultural Britain. A Ramgarhia Sikh, Mota Singh was raised and educated in Nairobi, Kenya. In 1954 he shifted to England to complete the remaining part of his studies of Law. He joined the English Bar in 1967. (Courtesy: Economic Times, Jan 1, 2010)
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Mrs Swaranjit Kaur Passes Away
We are saddened to record that Mrs Swaranjit Kaur wife of our IOSS member Sardar Mohinder Singh passed away on Jan 10, 2010 at Mohali. It is worth noting that in the life of Sardar Mohinder Singh, Swaranjit Kaur played a very significant role for the welfare of Vanjaras and Sikligars. We pray to the Great Guru to give eternal peace to the departed soul and bestow blessings on the members of his family to bear this irreparable loss. The Members of the Institute of Sikh Studies deeply sympathized with Sardar Mohinder Singh in his loss of life partner.

Sardar Mohinder Singh donated Rs 10,000/- out of welfare fund created by his family in loving memory of his wife to the IOSS.

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Water Table in Punjab Depleting at Alarming Rate
23 March 2010. Water table is further reducing between 70 cm and 90 cm in different parts of state due to overexploitation of water.

Kapurthala: The Punjab is falling in the water-stress area category, according to the parameter set by the UN.The Water table dipping at alarming rate in Punjab and the availability of per capita water has alarmingly reduced to one-fourth in the state in the past about six decades.

In year 1947, 6,000 cubic metre water potable was available per person per year in Punjab but now as per the latest data, it has been reduced to only 1,600 cubic metre. In a function organised to mark International Water Day at Pushpa Gujral Science City (PGSC) here on Monday, the geologist said 103 of the total 137 blocks, including Jalandhar, Kapurthala and Amritsar, are overexploiting ground water.

“The water table in Punjab has already reduced alarmingly and the same is further depleting between 70 cm and 90 cm in different parts of the state due to mining of water.” He said. “As much as 31.16 billion cubic metre (BCM) water is consumed here every year against the easy availability of 21.44 BCM annually.”

Dr KP Singh, Professor at Centre of Advanced Study in Geology in Panjab University, Chandigarh said the situation will worsen if overexploitation continues in the same manner and no adequate water conservation measures are adopted, the availability as per capita water is feared to fall to 1,147 cubic metres in 2050. (Courtesy: Punjab Newsline Network, March 24, 2010)
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Letters to Editor

A Query
Respected Singh Sahib Ji,
Being a humble Sikh, I can’t dare to question anything regarding Gurbani. But at the same time, every Sikh may ask a question to get more knowledge.

After Guru Nanak Dev ji, all the Gurus proclaimed themselves as second Guru Nanak, third Guru Nanak up to tenth Guru Nanak. After Guru Nanak, all the Gurus, whose Bani has been included in the Guru Granth Sahib, added the name of ‘Nanak’ in their Bani.

Without entering into any controversy regarding the authenticity of Dasam Granth, we all consider that, at least, Jaap Sahib, Chaupaee Sahib and Sawaiye Sahib (Banis of daily Nitnem) are the Banis of Guru Gobind Singh ji. There is no mention of name of Nanak in these Banis. If Guru Gobind Singh ji considered himself as tenth Guru Nanak, why is it so? I asked this simple question to many preachers coming to different Gurdwaras here, but nobody could give me any satisfactory answer. That is why, I am sending this email to you.

I would be grateful to you all for considering my question and replying it. Thanking you.

Tarlochan Singh Aujla (Dr)
Toronto, Canada
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Record Contemporary Historical Facts
Dear Editor,
The publication of a special issue of Abstracts of Sikh Studies, was indeed a laudable achievement!

It was a big disaster in Punjab during the Operation Blue Star and later. Santji and his men, innocent pilgrims and devotees in Golden Temple, villagers in their habitats and also on their way to Golden Temple, Sikh army disasters, rural and urban population caught in the crossfire, killing of amritdharis, casualties in riot victims in Delhi and elsewhere in the country – the list is long – were killed. There is a dire need of compiling a registry of those who died on the lines of an SGPC publication on atrocities on Hindus and Sikhs during partition. This would put historical facts on record and would not allow the same to go astray. Who is going to do it – SGPC, IOSS, ISC or some other institution? The historiography must be recorded and that too as soon as possible before the witnesses and memories fade.

R S Soni
57, Saraswati Enclave Apts,
26/3, Sector IX, Rohini, Delhi-35

 

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