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Sikh Pachan Vich Kesa Da Mahatav (Pbi)

A Reveiw by Kartar Singh*

Author: Dr Gurmit Singh
Published by: Abad Parkashan, Patiala
Pages : 134; price Rs 130/-; Paperback
Edition: 2008

Alarmed by the ever increasing trend of cutting hair amongst youth born in Sikh families causing damage to the inalienable Sikh form ordained by Guru Gobind Singh ji has motivated various devout Sikh scholars to highlight the importance of unshorn hair for a Sikh, in their scholarly writings based on tenets of Gurbani, Sikh history and tradition to halt this dangerous sway. Sikh Pachan Vich Kesan da Mahatav written by Dr Gurmit Singh Sidhu of Punjabi University, Patiala, is perhaps the best book on the subject so far as I have gone through. Quoting Dr Bhai Jodh Singh, the author asserts that Khalsa was not created to meet some specific need as the adversaries of Sikhism would mischievously say but the faith in Guru’s word and discipline ordained in Sikh Code of Conduct (maryada) are the very basis of Sikhism and distinctive form of a Sikh in his unshorn hair with beard and turban gives him an everlasting identity amongst the people of the other faiths.

Sardar Hukam Singh a devout Sikh, after retirement from governorship while addressing a congregation of Singh Sabhas as President of Kendri Singh Sabha said, “Presently as we are known throughout the world I cannot conceive a Sikh without this typical form in which hair is the towering ingredient of Sikh identity.”

The author has critically examined the arguments of various other scholars like Udham Singh Giani, Ajmer Singh, Narinder Singh, Sarup Singh Alag and many others on the subject and discussed various aspects, i.e., the period of glory and fall of Sikhs, way of life, Present political situation, social behaviour, dera culture, religious needs, scientific approach, fashion galore and challenges before the Sikh community in well researched analysis of facts in a cogent and reasonful manner that the reader wants to finish the book in one go to find out some silver lining to thwart the downward drifting of Sikh bus to the precipice of rudderless inheritors of Sikh values and proud past.

The author has bemoaned, rather warned against the claim of those Sikhs not retaining the Sikh form but arguing that they are Sikhs at heart. He also boldly chides those Sikhs who in outer form seem to be perfect Gurusikhs but transgress the lofty values expounded in Gurbani. According to the author the best argument in favour of Sikh form is that the Guru ordained it and Sikhs should obey the command in letter and spirit finding all other arguments core shallow.

Dr Sidhu has not worked out a perfect system of propagation of Sikhism, which should have been the culmination of this laborious rendition.

However this book can be a subject with the experts to workout an effective propagatory system to meet the dangerous threat to the Sikh form and Sikh way of life advocated in Sikh tenets.

The book consisting of 134 pages in lucid Punjabi language is decently printed with attractive get up and reasonably priced. Such a standard book should have its English version for those who are not well versed in Punjabi.


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