Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Religion and Healthcare – Sikh

In exploring the views of different religions toward health, well-being, Western medicine, and death, we interviewed a variety of religious spokespersons. Although each religion has its own general guidelines, we found that there are frequently individual differences in interpretation and adherence

The following answers were compiled with information from Dr. Onkar Singh, a naturopathic doctor in Brantford, Ontario.

Q: Does Sikhism have any dietary restrictions?

A: Sikhs do not eat meat used in religious sacrifice or Halal meat, since they believe the method of killing to be cruel. They believe that smoking cigarettes and drinking alcoholic beverages deters a person from God\'s way of life, so they avoid these practices.

Q: Does Sikhism have a history of traditional or herbal medicine?

A: Sikhs have a choice in the type of healthcare and medications they receive. Since Sikhism originates from India, many people combine conventional Western healthcare practices with alternative practices, including homeopathy, ayurveda, and naturopathy, and it is common to take herbal medicines.

Q: Are there treatments or medications that are refused by Sikhs?

A: Sikhism values the sciences and the knowledge of healthcare practitioners, and Sikhs are not prohibited from using any medical procedures. However, since cutting the hair is considered to be disrespectful, some patients resist shaving the hair on the body before an operation.

For cultural reasons, women may not discuss certain health issues with a male doctor, particularly if it is of a sexual nature. Sometimes a female doctor may speak with the patient privately to learn more information about a health complaint. Sikhs do not like to openly discuss things of a sexual nature with anyone, since these matters are considered private, so it may be difficult to find out all of a patient\'s symptoms, male or female.

Q: What is your religion\'s position on the following?

A: Sexual enhancing drugs (i.e., Viagra): Although these drugs may be discouraged by those who associate them with lust, taking them is a personal choice.

Birth Control: Many people do use birth control – it is a personal decision. Again, however, birth control may be associated with lust by some people and may be seen to disrupt the natural cycle of procreation, so they will not use it. And sex should only be within marriage.

Abortion: There is no religious ruling on abortion. Some do not support its use because they believe that the fetus has a soul. However, it is a personal choice.

Q: What should a healthcare professional know about a Sikh\'s view of death?

A: Everything that happens is the will of God. Healing through prayer and through medicine are both possible. But a person is meant to recover without medication, they will do so. Many people will willingly accept the will of God rather than go through difficult treatments. When a patient dies, scripture reading and prayer are carried out, and a service for the deceased is held about a week later.

Background on Sikhism
In 1499, after having a life-altering experience, the founder, Shri Guru Nanak Dev Ji (known as Guru Nanak) started the religion in the Punjab region of what is now Pakistan. Although Sikhism adopts some Hindu and Muslim concepts, it is a new idea – not a merger of the two religions. \"Sikh\" means \"learner\" or \"disciple,\" and Sikhism\'s goal is to search for \"truth\" – specifically true love and reality in this world.

Sikhs believe in one true God, whose reality can be realized through two perspectives – intellect and love. They also believe that humans can relate to God through meditation and that the human soul is inherently good, but it is fettered by human weakness and faults. Sikhs also believe in the concept of reincarnation and that people can move closer to (or further away from) realizing \"truth\" in each subsequent life. Finding \"truth\" includes blending the body and the soul with the essence of God to experience perfect bliss. Because of this view, Sikhs do not look at death as a loss, but as the possibility that their loved one has joined God\'s being.

Guru and Sikh - The Common Sikh

Most people born in the Sikh households are indifferent toward the Sikh teachings. They visit the Sikh places of worship, on special occasions or every weekend, because of tradition, for social reasons, or to pray for favors. They do not have a desire to understand the Sikh teaching. Until they reach some awakening, they are no different than the similar masses in any other faith. Many believe they are \"Sikh\" because they go to a Gurudwara, they pray (whenever they have a problem) only \"to the Sikh Gurus or Guru Granth Sahib,\" and to no one else. Others think they are Sikh because they are strict in keeping the \"Five Ks.\" But, these do not fulfil the features of a Sikh. It simply adds to the number of people who can argue or fight on behalf of the Sikhs without a valid knowledge of the Sikh Guru\'s teaching. They do not represent the Sikh Panth.

Some people differ from the above because of their sentiments and desire. They have an interest in learning these teachings, but they lack the understanding, motivation, or courage to follow them completely, and they cannot maintain a Sikh appearance. We can see that many work harder for the Sikh causes. They may possess a stronger faith, morality and honesty than some others with full hair and a turban. However, they do not represent the Sikh Panth either. These poor souls stand out as the only \"dissidents\", because they are visible! A niche, proper help and support for these people, is painfully lacking in the Sikh society today. Often, due to our spiritual and emotional attachment with the appearance of The Tenth Master, we give more respect to people with hair, regardless of their character. This makes us appear as if we condone hypocrisy.

Sikh Panth is the only spiritual path in the entire world, where, preservation of natural hair is an important and essential component of worship. The Sikhs look different than everyone else. Therefore, they live mostly in a, however tacit, social and political separation from the Non Sikhs. Sikhs have no spiritual allies either. For this reason the Panth has required an enormous sacrifice from its followers. Whenever there is an opportunity, people have martyred the Sikhs in large numbers. This makes the Sikhs stronger.

At the same time, Sikh Children and weak Sikhs suffer a tremendous psychological stress. Being constantly bombarded with, suggestions and signals contrary to their faith, extremely strong peer pressure and other forces of outer society where, truancy, smoking, unrestrained sex, drugs, delinquency, sensual \"music\", as well as shaving and mutilation of hair, is also the rule. People outside the Sikh faith cannot understand the impact, and the conflict it causes in the Sikh households.

Sikh parents need to keep this in view. We need to actively combat these forces in the similar notes. At present, the Sikh society is very immature and naive about it. Members in some Sikh households are forced to be Sikh against their will. Forcing people against their own choice results in a society of extremely maladjusted individuals. Rather, they should be encouraged to follow by setting a good example of the Sikh family members in the house. This will also motivate the devout Sikhs to be more diligent themselves.

During the time of The Ten Masters, and until recently, the family members of most Punjabi households were mixed as Sikh and Hindu. They all spoke mixed Punjabi. They used to live together peacefully, along with the Muslim friends as next door neighbors. Today, we need to develop viable alternatives against the pressures of Non Sikh culture on the Sikh children. One avenue would be to develop art, literature, and movies that would deeply impress our children against the outside forces. Another important element is to ensure that the Sikh children understand and participate in the services at the Gurudwara. We need to engage them in an intelligent discussion suited for their age, and not simply subject them to a fervent preaching.

The Sikh Panth stands only on faith in the Guru, and a sincere, spiritual worship in the ancient tradition, while staying ready to sacrifice for the Guru and Dharma. Lacking this, a Sikh turns into nothing but a spiritually disabled and a morally weak character, with a barren life. Keeping a Sikh appearance then becomes meaningless and, also very difficult. Various social maladies crop up in the Sikh communities along with confusion and arguments in the Gurudwaras, lacking the preservation of spirituality and ancient tradition as their major goal. Just as a path without the hair cannot be the Sikh Panth. Hair, turban, or a sword, without, love and adoration for the Ten Masters, a true spiritual hunger, worship, humility, and the proper Sikh conduct, becomes a mere disguise.


Sikh sects not respecting the rules set by The Tenth Master could be, probably included here in this hierarchy. Some examples: Offshoots of Sikh Panth with new names and groups, for no particular reason. Influencing others with a display of occult powers. Strange practices, for instance, hyperventilating under the notion of Simran, rhythmic or circular body motions, causing a sensation of self-hypnosis and euphoria. Teaching physical Yoga, or some other exotic disciplines, as an integral part of the Sikh curriculum, etc. Some of these sects have provided an example of the intensity and motivation needed in the indolent masses noted above in this section. They deserve praise for that part.

However well intentioned these sects may be, if they do not adhere to the spiritual conduct and practices the Ten Masters illustrated over the span of two hundred years, they defeat the purpose of their sacrifice and their teaching. The Tenth Master concluded this process with the final Sikh form, an established Sikh way of worship, and the accepted Sikh lifestyle (Rehet-Maryada). He did so, also, to prevent any future modification and resulting degradation, for the coming generations. This is why The Tenth Master said, \"Whenever a Khalsa abandons his uniqueness and adopts extraneous spiritual practices and rituals of others, I will leave his company.\" (SLG, p.667)


The Gurus did not condemn Yoga. However, Yoga cannot be counted as a required ingredient in what makes a Sikh. Anyone who disputes this should first examine the history of the Ten Masters, or study the Gurbani, like, \"Paath purrhio ur beid beechario...\" (SGGS, p.641-42). Just like hygiene, regular exercise, balanced diet, vitamins, Yoga is an activity that any sensible Sikh should explore and use, while being careful not to become obsessed with the bodily functions. For instance, a vegetarian diet, various simple forms of Pranayama, are very useful, and chastity is essential, to enable one for the higher energy of the Shabad. Sikh Path is liberal and progressive. The Gurus do not reject a healthy lifestyle through proper use of any science. We all know that science is still struggling to prove how accurately Guru Nanak described the universe and biology in his verses, five hundred years ago.

Gurbani supports the concept of Bhakti Yoga, Karma Yoga, Janana Yoga, and Raja Yoga. Bhakti, Seva, and Nam, extensively cited in Gurbani, cover the first three, not as Yoga but as a Gift, a consequence of God-Guru\'s Mercy. This flows freely from a complete submission to a True Spiritual Master. Yoga is, simply, a philosophical science. Like physical exercise, when used sensibly, it can help build a body and mind that are better prepared to receive, and share the spiritual energy with others. When practiced without submission, just like practice of charity, it can, however subtly, result in a stronger ego and thus keep us farther away from Truth. Raja Yoga is mentioned favorably several times in Gurbani, because of the supreme aim of Raja Yoga: As Patanjali said, \"Yoga is removal of mind\'s noise. Then the observer can return to a view of the Self.\" At the same time, Gurbani names various limbs and segments of Raja Yoga as not conducive to Truth.

Sikh Panth, as shown by the Ten Masters, leads to the ultimate truth through an inner death, then living abundantly and spiritually through the Guru\'s command, breathing only whatever the Guru allows. A Sikh, on the Panth, cannot bother with attempts to open some Chakra (energy level) or any other experiences related to different Chakras per se. Doing so, will divert him from a higher aim, Pure Love, which is at the innermost seat of consciousness, or should we say, at the highest energy level.

What is the practical outcome of, the perfect knowledge of Truth, at the Sahasrara Chakra? Is it not Pure Love for the whole creation and a true humility toward all humans? So, instead of taking detours, a Sikh does it naturally, through Love and humility, from the Guru, devotional singing of Gurbani with other devout Sikhs, and by quiet meditation on Gurmantra and Gurbani. The Sikh rises above a preoccupation and identification with the body and mind by \"selling\" it to the Guru in exchange for a perpetual supply of (spiritual) Naam, engaging in extensive Seva (selfless service), and following the Gurbani to the letter. This is also called Sehej Yoga, or the Natural Yoga.

A Gursikh is not deprived of any esoteric body experiences, if that is his Guru\'s will. If there is a need, the Inner Guide shows all the required disciplines. They are practiced naturally by following the Guru\'s command, rather than through a personal attachment with the body. Verbal details of these practices are not intrinsic to the Panth. This is why Gurbani does not dwell on this subject. For some, the direct way is too simple. Many seekers are more inclined toward physical exercises and controlling the energy, or holding a rather intellectually spiritual (Zen, for instance) stance, than Simran in pure love and devotion, until, by God\'s Grace, they witness Pure Love living in flesh. Still, they should clearly regard all Yoga practices as what they really are, a separate science, not as a requirement on the Sikh Path. Some will enjoy the honey, while others study the honeycomb and practice various approaches to it first.

The Ninth Master, Guru Teg Bahadur said: \"The Guru explains this secret: Without Love of God, we cannot be free from fear, and the cycle of misery continues. Pilgrimage, fasting, greatest charities, or Yoga, they are all useless if we forget to praise God in whatever we do, and if we do not resort to rely only on Him for all results. A rare soul gives up both - pride (love of self) and co-dependence of family (love of others) - and then, meditates only on Gobind. Nanak says that such a human is what they call, free of birth and death while still living among us.\" (SGGS, p.830-31)

The Ten Masters have regarded meditation as essential. For example, The Tenth Master said: \"Meditate on Him whose infinitely forceful light permeates the whole world,\" and the Fifth Master said, in Sukhmani: \"My dear saint friends, when you praise God, do it with an alert and one pointed mind.\" It cannot be done unless we put some effort to practice it every day as a routine exercise. This verse also signifies that being \'saintly\' is not enough. This is why a mantra is given. Gurmantra is a vehicle, a thread, only for meditation. Again, The Tenth Master says: \"Meditating on Him, as the Single aim and thought, even for the fraction of a second, has liberated humans from the noose of death.\"

The Sikh Lifestyle

I was going to write a response to another thread, then I kind of went off on a tangent, and thought best to post this...

Oftentimes when posed with a question, the simplest solution for me is to \'wait for the answer to arrive on its own terms\'. Thus, the Universe (the Source that is the flowing energy of Creation) subtly, but surely creates and manifests into my life whatever is necessary to complete the journey. Of this I am sure, for whatever I have asked for, I have received.

The strength of the resolve of a Sikh, decides how much Bliss they live in on this earth, yes BLISS!. Sikhi is in my veins, it is a part of my very nature. It is the resolve that seperates achievement from lack of results. In almost any aspect of life, I feel we all need to go back to a few basic fundamentals to strive for daily achievement.

This includes not one, or two, but all aspects of Sikhi that lead to Inspired Living, or Chardi Kala. Some of the aspects described below are now backed up by research to improving the human body, and ultimately its condition:

- Sleep little & Meditate (improve brain function, balances hormones)
- Exercise to build strength (increases lifespan, decreases chance of illness or disease)
- Exercise cardiovascular conditioning - Gatka ex. (improves body function, enhances cognition, decreases fat and cholesterol levels thus many diseases avoided)
- Pray & keep positive outlook (Research now confirms that optimists live longer, any positive thought potentially leads to increase in positive chemicals by the brain, and if you look up Dr. Emoto\'s work it is quite possible that positive throughts can potentially influence the molecular structure of our cells)
- Eat little \"lentils, milk etc.\'\"(Moderate calorie restriction is linked to longer lifespans, overindulgence is obvious in it\'s problems)
- Be Altruistic & Forgiving (Both these have been shown by repeated studies to improve not only the Serotonin levels {feel good molecule} of the person who is the giver, not only the Serotonin of the person who is the taker, but also the Serotonin of a person who observes this act - Also linked to long life)
- Marriage (a health marriage leads to a healthy long life, with many benefits)
- Abstinence from Drugs, alcohol, cigarrettes etc. (These are the number one causes of basically the top 10 diseases within North America today, giving rise to CHD, COPD etc.).
- Work honestly
- Share Earnings
- See God in all...

The list can go on of course, but I feel that all of these ideals or values have been prescribed through the Sikh teachings. In fact, all that modern day research is doing is discovering the benefits of these very things.

An example of an individual who prescribed to the above ideals are Baba Buddha Ji. Born in 1508, passing in 1630, his life spanned 122 years. The modern record for longevity is 122. (source:, and

Finally, I would like to say that the point of this has been to describe how as Sikhs, we have the capacity to live wonderful lives. Regardless of whatever game the world is playing, our Spirits, our Resolve can be greater so long as we learn to play the Game of Love with the Lord.

We do not accept mediocre levels of living. We do not accept living in pain, or anguish. We live in a state of Rising Spirits. We do not seek out Bliss, we allow the Lord\'s Presence to Radiate Bliss within us. A state of Nirvana that can be created within the heart of anyone, here, now, at this very moment!

Thus, I leave it to the rest of the board to contribute feedback as to Sikh Lifestyle aspects that lead to a fulfilling wonderful life.

Potly Baba ki jai :- Dia Mirza

Actress Dia Mirza had made up her mind when she was called for the narration of Dus Kahaniyaan . She had decided that she wouldn't do the film. But then the script was narrated to her and it simply swept her off her feet.

She just had to say yes! When we got in touch with D, she told us, "I went with the mindset that I would say no. I wasn't sure what ten short stories would be like. I saw the film and was thrilled after watching it. I remember there used to be a weekly serial a very long time ago called Potly Baba Ki. Dus Kahaniyan reminds me of that."

The Essence of Leadership by Narayan Murthy

A leader is an agent of change, and progress is about change. In the words of Robert F Kennedy, \'Progress is a nice word; but change is its motivator.\'

Leadership is about raising the aspirations of followers and enthusing people with a desire to reach for the stars. For instance, Mahatma Gandhi created a vision for independence in India and raised the aspirations of our people.

Leadership is about making people say, \'I will walk on water for you.\' It is about creating a worthy dream and helping people achieve it.

Robert Kennedy, summed up leadership best when he said, \'Others see things as they are and wonder why; I see them as they are not and say why not?\'


A leader has to raise the confidence of followers. He should make them understand that tough times are part of life and that they will come out better at the end of it. He has to sustain their hope, and their energy levels to handle the difficult days.

There is no better example of this than Winston Churchill. His courageous leadership as prime minister for Great Britain successfully led the British people from the brink of defeat during World War II. He raised his people\'s hopes with the words, \'These are not dark days; these are great days -- the greatest days our country has ever lived.\'

Never is strong leadership more needed than in a crisis. In the words of Seneca, the Greek philosopher, \'Fire is the test of gold; adversity, of strong men.\'


The leader has to create hope. He has to create a plausible story about a better future for the organisation: everyone should be able to see the rainbow and catch a part of it.

This requires creating trust in people. And to create trust, the leader has to subscribe to a value system: a protocol for behavior that enhances the confidence, commitment and enthusiasm of the people.

Compliance to a value system creates the environment for people to have high aspirations, self esteem, belief in fundamental values, confidence in the future and the enthusiasm necessary to take up apparently difficult tasks. Leaders have to walk the talk and demonstrate their commitment to a value system.

As Mahatma Gandhi said, \'We must become the change we want to see in the world.\' Leaders have to prove their belief in sacrifice and hard work. Such behavior will enthuse the employees to make bigger sacrifices. It will help win the team\'s confidence, help leaders become credible, and help create trust in their ideas.

Enhancing trust

Trust and confidence can only exist where there is a premium on transparency. The leader has to create an environment where each person feels secure enough to be able to disclose his or her mistakes, and resolves to improve.

Investors respect such organisations. Investors understand that the business will have good times and bad times. What they want you to do is to level with them at all times. They want you to disclose bad news on a proactive basis. At Infosys [Get Quote], our philosophy has always been, \'When in doubt, disclose.\'


Good corporate governance is about maximising shareholder value on a sustainable basis while ensuring fairness to all stakeholders: customers, vendor-partners, investors, employees, government and society.

A successful organisation tides over many downturns. The best index of success is its longevity. This is predicated on adhering to the finest levels of corporate governance.

At Infosys, we have consistently adopted transparency and disclosure standards even before law mandated it. In 1995, Infosys suffered losses in the secondary market. Under Indian GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles), we were not required to make this information public. Nevertheless, we published this information in our annual report.

Fearless environment

Transparency about the organisation\'s operations should be accompanied by an open environment inside the organisation. You have to create an environment where any employee can disagree with you without fear of reprisal.

In such a case, everyone makes suggestions for the common good. In the end everyone will be better off.

On the other hand, at Enron, the CFO was running an empire where people were afraid to speak. In some other cases, the whistle blowers have been harassed and thrown out of the company.

Managerial remuneration

We have gone towards excessive salaries and options for senior management staff. At one company, the CEO\'s employment contract not only set out the model of the Mercedes the company would buy him, but also promised a monthly first-class air ticket for his mother, along with a cash bonus of $10 million and other benefits.

Not surprisingly, this company has already filed for bankruptcy.

Managerial remuneration should be based on three principles:

Fairness with respect to the compensation of other employees;
Transparency with respect to shareholders and employees;
Accountability with respect to linking compensation with corporate performance.
Thus, the compensation should have a fixed component and a variable component. The variable component should be linked to achieving long-term objectives of the firm. Senior management should swim or sink with the fortunes of the company.

Senior management compensation should be reviewed by the compensation committee of the board, which should consist only of independent directors. Further, this should be approved by the shareholders.

I\'ve been asked, \'How can I ask for limits on senior management compensation when I have made millions myself?\' A fair question with a straightforward answer: two systems are at play here. One is that of the promoter, the risk taker and the capital markets; and the other is that of professional management and compensation structures.

One cannot mix these two distinct systems, otherwise entrepreneurship will be stifled, and no new companies will come up, no progress can take place. At the same time, there has to be fairness in compensation: there cannot be huge differences between the top most and the bottom rung of the ladder within an organisation.

PSPD model

A well run organisation embraces and practices a sound Predictability-Sustainability-Profitability-Derisking (we call this the PSPD model at Infosys) model. Indeed, the long-term success of an organisation depends on having a model that scales up profitably.

Further, every organisation must have a good derisking approach that recognises, measures and mitigates risk along every dimension.


Strong leadership in adverse times helps win the trust of the stakeholders, making it more likely that they will stand by you in your hour of need. As leaders who dream of growth and progress, integrity is your most wanted attribute.

Lead your teams to fight for the truth and never compromise on your values. I am confident that our corporate leaders, through honest and desirable behaviour, will reap long-term benefits for their stakeholders.

Two mottos

In conclusion, keep in mind two Sanskrit sentences: Sathyannasti Paro Dharma (there is no dharma greater than adherence to truth); and Satyameva jayate (truth alone triumphs). Let these be your motto for good corporate leadership.

The author is Chairman and Chief Mentor, Infosys Technologies.

ਪੀਐਮ ਨੇ ਪਰਿਵਾਰ ਨਾਲ ਕੀਤਾ ਨਾਸ਼ਤਾ

ਨਵੀਂ ਦਿੱਲੀ (ਭਾਸ਼ਾ), 27 ਜਨਵਰੀ 2009 ( 15:01 IST )

ਕੋਰੋਨੇਰੀ ਬਾਈਪਾਸ ਸਰਜਰੀ ਕਰਵਾਉਣ ਬਾਅਦ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਡਾ.ਮਨਮੋਹਨ ਸਿੰਘ ਦੀ ਹਾਲਤ \'ਚ ਲਗਾਤਾਰ ਤੇਜ਼ੀ ਨਾਲ ਸੁਧਾਰ ਹੋ ਰਿਹਾ ਹੈ।ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਨੇ ਅੱਜ ਅਖਿਲ ਭਾਰਤੀ ਆਯੁਰਵਿਗਿਆਨ ਸੰਸਥਾ \'ਚ ਹੀ ਸਵੇਰੇ ਆਪਣੇ ਪਰਿਵਾਰ ਦੇ ਮੈਂਬਰਾਂ ਨਾਲ ਨਾਸ਼ਤਾ ਕੀਤਾ।

ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੀ ਮੀਡੀਆ ਸਲਾਹਕਾਰ ਦੀਪਕ ਸੰਧੂ ਨੇ ਅੱਜ ਦੱਸਿਆ ਹੈ ਕਿ ਪਿੱਛਲੀ 24 ਜਨਵਰੀ ਨੂੰ ਕੋਰੋਨਰੀ ਬਾਈਪਾਸ ਸਰਜਰੀ ਕਰਵਾਉਣ ਬਾਅਦ 76 ਸਾਲਾ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੀ ਹਾਲਤ \'ਚ ਲਗਾਤਾਰ ਤੇਜ਼ੀ ਨਾਲ ਸੁਧਾਰ ਹੋ ਰਿਹਾ ਹੈ ਅਤੇ ਅੱਜ ਸਵੇਰੇ ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਨੇ ਆਪਣੀ ਪਤਨੀ ਅਤੇ ਪੁੱਤਰੀਆਂ ਨਾਲ ਨਾਸ਼ਤਾ ਕੀਤਾ।

ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੇ ਡਾਕਟਰ ਸ਼੍ਰੀਨਾਥ ਰੈਡੀ ਨੇ ਦੱਸਿਆ ਹੈ ਕਿ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੀ ਹਾਲਤ \'ਚ ਤੇਜ਼ੀ ਨਾਲ ਸੁਧਾਰ ਨੂੰ ਧਿਆਨ \'ਚ ਰੱਖਦੇ ਹੋਏ ਇਹ ਫੈਸਲਾ ਕੀਤਾ ਗਿਆ ਹੈ ਕਿ ਅੱਜ ਦੁਪਹਿਰ ਬਾਅਦ ਸਘਨ ਮੈਡੀਕਲ ਰੂਮ ਦੀ ਤਰ੍ਹਾਂ ਬਣਾ ਦਿੱਤੇ ਗਏ ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਦੇ ਕਮਰੇ ਦਾ ਉਹ ਦਰਜਾ ਹਟਾ ਦਿੱਤਾ ਜਾਵੇਗਾ।

ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਨੇ ਦੱਸਿਆ ਹੈ ਕਿ ਜਿਸ ਕਮਰੇ \'ਚ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਨੂੰ ਰੱਖਿਆ ਗਿਆ ਹੈ,ਉਸ ਨੂੰ ਉੱਨਤ ਕਰਕੇ ਸਘਨ ਮੈਡੀਕਲ ਰੂਮ ਦੇ ਬਰਾਬਰ ਬਣਾ ਦਿੱਤਾ ਗਿਆ ਹੈ।

ਡਾ.ਰੇਡੀ ਨੇ ਕਿਹਾ ਹੈ ਕਿ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਨੂੰ ਹੁਣ ਆਮ ਭੋਜਣ ਦਿੱਤਾ ਜਾ ਰਿਹਾ ਹੈ ਅਤੇ ਕੇਵਲ ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਦੇ ਪਰਿਵਾਰ ਦੇ ਮੈਂਬਰਾਂ ਨੂੰ ਹੀ ਉਨ੍ਹਾ ਨੂੰ ਮਿਲਣ ਦੀ ਆਗਿਆ ਦਿੱਤੀ ਗਈ ਹੈ।ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਹੁਣ ਆਪਣੇ ਪਰਿਵਾਰ ਦੇ ਮੈਂਬਰਾਂ ਨਾਲ ਗੱਲਬਾਤ ਕਰ ਰਹੇ ਹਨ।

SIKHS: Change We Must

The Indian Nation State is luring the Dalit domain into similar mainstreaming. Barack Obama refused to be "mainstreamed". He called for Change, and showed that he is the Change. We have to be made of different stuff than we are out to fight against. It is here that the lessons of an Obama win lie for Sikhs and for the marginalised Dalits, the Blacks of India.

Thomas Jefferson made a promise in 1776. This was a promise of a free world. Thomas Jefferson also owned slaves. This was a flaw in the entire project of democracy. In 1776, America made a promise to facilitate a dream. Something happened there. Something that most Americans were not very comfortable about. It took 14th Amendment, Civil War, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr, Malcom X and the diligent fight of the lovers of true democracy for years but then came Barack Obama.

Something happened in the US of A. History\'s wrongs can never be righted by one sweep. But Obama\'s victory was the one decisive step the Americans took to make a valiant attempt.

Sikhs have many lessons to learn from Obama\'s victory. Marginalised in their own country, pushed to the brink, stereotyped at one stage as terrorists, painted as language chauvinists in the 1960s, seen as spanner-throwers in the run up to the freedom struggle and branded as separatists in the most negative sense, the fate of the Sikhs in India is no better than the fate of the Black man in the USA in the 1960s.

Brahmanical forces hold the levers of power in India, and the country\'s best and the brilliant cast their lot with these forces. Even the most accomplished and gifted weigh in on the side of the establishment, and right now there is not a single political party in India that is not controlled by Brahamnical forces. So intelligent are these forces that they have created a confusion between Brahmins and brahamanical forces, thus ensuring that the fissures between the haves and the have-nots of power structure become further solidified.

Barack Obama came from a class and race that Indians can best understand in their own indegenous terms of sociology. Barack Obama was the Dalit of the US society. Dalits are the Blacks of India. Sikhs are the marginalised of India. Punjab is the backwater of New Delhi\'s concerns.

The lesson from Barack Obama\'s victory are simple in their nature, grave in their appeal, weighty in their meaning and challenging in their form.

India saw some resurgence of the power of the marginalised in the last few years. Dalit empowerment started crawling towards political agenda of certain parties, and the old brahamnical power structures started feeling threatened. But they have faced these challenges repeatedly in the past.

Barack Obama\'s was a force of honesty. The graciousness of Senator John McCain, a truly genuine hero of the United States, in his concessional speech was a tribute to the honesty and the hope generated by Obama. Unfortunately in India, the brahamanical forces have so corrupted the agenda of empowerment of the Dalit that they have succeeded in Brahamanising the Dalit movement.

For the first time, there were serious questions being raised by saner people about the exalted theories of India\'s genius to \'create unity out of diversity;, \'the wonderful assimilative power of Hinduism\' and the unparalleled intellectual glories of the Vedic-brahmanic traditions, to quote a rather eye opening passage from Braj Ranjan Mani\'s De-Brahamanising History (Manohar Publishers).

Like the promise of a truly free world and the land of the dreams that was talked about as far as the US was concerned even when there was much path to be still covered, in India the brahamanical strategy was to create the lure of the Oriental exotica, and many a so-called progressive radicals fell for it. Such was the patriotic pedagogy that was created from colonial historiography and fine tuned in the conundrum of Dayananda, KC Sen, Bankim, RC Dutta, Tilak, Vivekananda, Ranade, Lajpat Rai, BC Pal, Aurobindo, gandhi, Savarkar and SP Mukherjee. This is the poison that the children in schools in India are fed with cheap charts of portraits of \"Our Great National Leaders\" that sell for a penny and from which the kids clip and paste pictures in their scrap books.

The project of popular education in brahamanical mode thus feeds on itself. Brahamanise the Sikhs, brahamanise Budhhism, and now there is a new script being staged by the brahamanical forces.

Brahamnise the Dalits.

Since a charismatic African-American is now set to arrive in the White House, expect the debate in India to turn to whether we can ever have a Dalit as Prime Minister.

Obama\'s Acceptance Speech
Such debates are always fraught with some dangerous assumptions. Indira Gandhi was a woman, so is Sonia Gandhi. What contribution did they make to the cause of women empowerment? What contribution did the string of Muslim presidents of India make to the fate of Muslims? By how much was the stock and fate of Sikhs as a nation improve due to Giani Zail Singh and Manmohan Singh being in positions which we thought can and often make a difference?

Barack Obama\'s was a force of honesty. The graciousness of Senator John McCain, a truly genuine hero of the United States, was a tribute to the honesty and the hope generated by Obama. Unfortunately in India, the brahamanical forces have so corrupted the agenda of empowerment of the Dalit that they have succeeded in Brahamanising the Dalit movement.

So out of such strategy has emerged the current avatar of Mayawati. In about six months, the Indian electorate will be asked to give its verdict on who the next Prime Minister should be. The larger question is: are Indian voters prepared to consider the Bahujan Samaj Party president Mayawati's quest for the top post?

Obama Race Speech, delivered in Philadelphia

Many would ask if she is indeed the Dalit as people know a dalit? The similarity between her and Mr. Obama, if any, is the race factor that has a bearing on the U.S. elections and could be equated with the issue of caste that invariably determines the outcome in the Indian elections. But can Ms. Mayawati emulate the Obama strategy? Is she prepared to draw lessons from the Obama campaign?

Mr. Obama has faced a series of challenges over the last two years. That he has a way with words is well established. His ability to expand his voter base by drawing the otherwise sceptical American youth into the vortex of politics is the second of his two outstanding attributes. He assiduously built his image as a politician who has a grip on the complex challenges faced by Americans in an increasingly globalised world.

Dalit empowerment advocates in India need to learn.

Just as Sikhs need to learn. What we need is a continuous engagement with the issues, with the world. Why is there no stand of the community on the neo-liberal policies? Why is Manmohan Singh our hero but not Utsa Patnaik? Why are the Sikhs, the community that established the tradition of langar to not only ensure that caste barriers are broken but to ensure that the poor have a stake in your development is not engaging itself with the complex interconnections between the global food crises and the economic recession?

Martin Luther King Dreamed Of This

We will be told that global recession is not a religious issue. By that reckoning, Guru Nanak\'s hymns about Babur may not fall within the religious domain. The concept of Miri-Piri does not leave anything outside the scope of our religious engagements.

Obama had done his homework, and his engagement is a life time\'s work. Anyone with any doubt can go read the text of the Philadelphia speech on race. We must as a community resist from our usual tactics of swift-boat attacks and steer away from acrimonious and avoidable debates.

In the year of the tercentenary of Gurta Gaddi, the Sikhs must vow to return to the traditions of engagement with the Word, engagement with knowledge acquisition that helps us in understanding the world and its interconnections, engagement with the incomplete work of creating an egalitarian society, engagement with the larger value system that Sikhism holds.

An engagement with being a Nyara Khalsa, a unique human being.

Sikhs should endorse Obama

One of the Sikh community's true heroes, Prof Randhir Singh, the Marxism scholar, once said it was unfortunate that Sikhs too have become mainstream. He enumerated a number of evils that plague people from other religious affiliations, and then said he can match all this with Sikh names too. It is such mainstreaming that the Sikhs have slipped into that we should avoid.

The Indian Nation State is luring the Dalit domain into similar mainstreaming. Barack Obama refused to be "mainstreamed". He called for Change, and showed that he is the Change. We have to be made of different stuff than we are out to fight against. It is here that the lessons of an Obama win lie for Sikhs and for the marginalised Dalits, the Blacks of India.

Will we be the Change? Change we need, Change we want, Change we must.

ਪੀਐੱਮ ਦੀ ਤੰਦਰੁਸਤੀ ਲਈ ਅਖੰਡ ਪਾਠ

ਅੰਮ੍ਰਿਤਸਰ (ਭਾਸ਼ਾ), ਮੰਗਲਵਾਰ, 27 ਜਨਵਰੀ 2009 ( 11:37 IST )

ਪੰਜਾਬ ਦੇ ਮੁੱਖ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਪ੍ਰਕਾਸ਼ ਸਿੰਘ ਬਾਦਲ ਨੇ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਮਨਮੋਹਨ ਸਿੰਘ ਦੇ ਜਲਦ ਸਿਹਤਮੰਦ ਹੋਣ ਲਈ ਕੱਲ੍ਹ ਸਵਰਣ ਮੰਦਿਰ ਵਿੱਚ ਅਖੰਡ ਪਾਠ ਦਾ ਆਯੋਜਨ ਕਰਵਾਇਆ.

ਮੁੱਖ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੇ ਮੀਡੀਆ ਸਲਾਹਕਾਰ ਹਰਚਰਨ ਸਿੰਘ ਬੈਂਸ ਨੇ ਕਿਹਾ ਕਿ ਬਾਦਲ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੀ ਸਿਹਤ ਨੂੰ ਲੈਕੇ ਕਾਫੀ ਚਿੰਤਤ ਹਨ ਅਤੇ ਉਹਨਾਂ ਨੇ ਗੁਰੂਬਾਣੀ ਦੀ ਅਰਦਾਸ ਵਿੱਚ ਉਹਨਾਂ ਦੀ ਤੰਦਰੁਸਤੀ ਦੇ ਲਈ ਦੁਆ ਮੰਗੀ ਹੈ.

ਬੈਂਸ ਨੇ ਕਿਹਾ ਕਿ ਅਖੰਡ ਪਾਠ ਕਰਵਾਉਣ ਦਾ ਫੈਸਲਾ ਮੁੱਖਮੰਤਰੀ ਨੇ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੇ ਓਪਰੇਸ਼ਨ ਦੇ ਦਿਨ ਹੀ ਕੀਤਾ ਸੀ.

ਬਾਦਲ ਨੇ ਗਣਤੰਤਰ ਦਿਹਾੜੇ ਉੱਤੇ ਆਪਣੇ ਭਾਸ਼ਣ ਵਿੱਚ ਕਿਹਾ ਮੈਂ ਸਰਬਸ਼ਕਤੀਮਾਨ ਨੂੰ ਅਰਦਾਸ ਕਰਦਾ ਹਾਂ ਕਿ ਪ੍ਰਧਾਨ ਮੰਤਰੀ ਦੇ ਜਲਦ ਠੀਕ ਹੋਣ ਜਾਣ ਤਾਂਕਿ ਉਹ ਰਾਸ਼ਟਰ ਦੀ ਅਗਵਾਈ ਦਾ ਫਰਜ ਜਲਦੀ ਨਾਲ ਫਿਰ ਤੋਂ ਗ੍ਰਹਿਣ ਕਰ ਸਕਣ.

Sikh worker faces severe racial attack

RICHMOND HILL: As Barack Obama spoke about tempering qualities of humility and restraint, 21-year-old Jasmir Singh, a Sikh truck worker was dubbed "Osama" and was attacked a third time, this time more viciously than on the previous two occasions. He may lose vision in the left eye, which has been stabbed badly, while his hair and beard were also pulled.

Sending shockwaves among hundreds of Sikhs who live in this area, Jasmir Singh said that it was a racial attack and that his friend who was not a Sikh, was left unharmed.

Recovering at the Elmhurst Hospital Center with a score of stitches on his left eye, Jasmir Singh, who was attacked near a grocery store at Jackson Heights said that he was taunted and abused.

According to last reports, two of the suspected attackers have been detained and the police is on the lookout for a third one.

Jasmir's father, Jiwan Singh summed it all, "We voted for Obama, but we are being dubbed Osama. Surely, we did not expect this."

Sikh-ing from Obama

Five days after the birth anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr, Barack Obama will be installed the President of the United States of America. It will be a truly significant day in American politics. And now that the initial euphoria is over and we are all waiting for tons of confetti to rain on us, let\'s take a moment to analyse the ground realities. India today has an upper-caste Hindu woman as President. A dalit as chief justice of its Supreme Court. A Muslim for Vice-President. A Sikh for Prime Minister. And the leader of its biggest - and ruling - political party, the Congress, is Sonia Gandhi, a Catholic from Italy. The Speaker of Parliament is a godless Communist. As P Sainath recently pointed out, India\'s most famous war hero Sam who died this year was a Parsi. Incidentally, the last President of India was a dalit.

What does this prove? Was Indira\'s years at the helm helpful particularly in improving the lot of the women? The US may be an awful latecomer to the party where self-representation is being celebrated, but the hopes on Obama are no less than that he will enter the White House walking on water.Years after King Jr fired a million men\'s hearts, Obama has been able to fill with zeal and zest and took on the Race question full frontal when he finally did in Philadelphia. Obama represents a historic shift. One that altered America\'s political arena on November 4. A small step for the world, a giant leap for America. But the burden that Barack Obama is saddled with is daunting. He inherits two wars that are going badly, a $ 10 trillion debt , unprecedented job losses, a reputation of US in tatters, and new enemies in Wall Street and Corporate US.

Obama has a King Jr to look up to and learn. With all its flaws, the democracy in US is also propelling the cause of democratisation of all procedures, values and institutions. As Diaspora community, the Indians and the Sikh nation must learn its own lessons from the Obama phenomenon, must revise the ones that King Jr\'s legacy has to teach us. India\'s own political Obama, the much respected B.R. Ambedkar was once asked, \"What are the prospects of democracy in India?\" He was quick to underline that linking Democracy with Parliamentary Government or elections was corrupting the notion of democracy. With Congress and BJP, the country\'s two main political parties upholding the caste system, there is little chance of India ever pushing the democratisation process. India\'s best and brilliant, many in the Left domain, have also tried to put the Class patina on caste, but this was akin to refusing to see the 800 pound gorilla in the bedroom. If stratification is stunting the growth of the individual then deliberate stunting is a deliberate denial of democracy.

Obama and King Jr both used their understanding and knowledge to push for democracy for all. In India, we see the best and brilliant among the brahamanical classes using their knowledge to push strange logic of postmodern skepticism that delegitimises all fight for the have nots. Instead, young and upcoming generations in India are being fed the development mantra as if it could be the end all of all problems.

Both King Jr and Obama's message is a message of Hope and Change. But the beauty of their message is that they say something that is doable. Do-able because it is completely in our own hands. The Change must start from Self and then go on to Society. Obama has shown that he started from Self. From Jan 20th, he will go on to change our world. As for us, have we already started. My God, we are late, because we did promise to ourselves that we too shall start effecting the change, and who better to start than the Self? Last time we made this promise was on November 4. We renew it on January 15, and we shall repeat it on January 20. And then every single day, and soon we shall have some progress to show.

25 years later, Punjab moves to regularise housing for 1984 victims

CHANDIGARH: THE PUNJAB government has decided to regularise unauthorised occupation of houses and booths by eligible 1984 riot victims and also allot 1,330 new houses to victims.

The government informed the Division Bench of Chief Justice T.S. Thakur and Justice Hemant Gupta of the Punjab and Haryana High Court that the Council of Ministers, at its meeting held on December 2, amended the policy regarding the allotment of plots/houses to riot victims.

The new policy comes in the wake of High Court directions to the Punjab government to submit a sworn statement to clear the air over whether it would implement a scheme to rehabilitate victims of anti-Sikh riots.

The Bench of Chief Justice, in its November 11 order, had stated: "There is nothing on record before us to show whether any policy regarding the allotment of booths or residential accommodation was formulated by the state government for the benefit of riot victims."

During the resumed hearing of a petition on Tuesday, praying for a mandamus seeking directions to the state government to implement decisions relating to rehabilitation benefits to the victims of the 1984 riots, Anita Bhalla, Under Secretary, Department of Revenue, Rehabilitation and Disaster Management filed an affidavit.

The affidavit reads, "It was decided that unauthorised occupation of eligible riot victims over the houses/booths should be regularised.

Accordingly , necessary instructions were issued… for necessary action." The state government informed the court that as per the amended policy , land for 327, 200 and 200 booths at Ludhiana, S.A.S. Nagar and Patiala, respectively , would be allotted at 50 per cent of the last auction price to eligible riot victims by PUDA.

As per the affidavit, the Cabinet had also approved alloting to the riot victims 364 government staff quarters in Ludhiana, including 69 houses under unauthorised possession of the victims and 295 vacant government staff quarters.

These houses would be allotted at the price prevailing in 1991-92. The state government further informed the Bench that there were 637 houses under unauthorised occupation and that 1,330 other LIG/MIG houses were available for allotment under this new decision of the Cabinet. In order to meet the remaining 50 per cent cost of land of 727 booths and 2,017 houses (which includes 50 houses already allotted to riot victims) Rs 8,102 lakh had been released to Department of Housing and Urban Development on January 15.

As per the policy , the eligible riot victims are those who had migrated to Punjab from November 1, 1984, to December 11, 1985, due to the November 1984 riots and had got themselves registered with deputy commissioners of the districts in which they had been residing. As per the earlier decision, all Sikh migrant widows, destitutes, etc.

Sikhs Proclaim No War

LONDON: Anyone who thought that Sikhs would sit back and allow India and Pakistan to wage their daily verbal duel and war cries without opprobrium from any quarters is in for a rude shock. Just as civil society in the two countries has geared up to denounce any possibility of war, the Sikhs too, as a people have shown exemplary solidarity to jointly proclaim peace in the Indian sub-continent and ask the two countries not to ignore the sentiments and concerns of the non-combatant Sikh populace in the region.

Continued war mongering between India and Pakistan, which has reached fever pitch since 26/11 has brought about a rare unity amongst Sikh groups from Punjab and across the world seeking intervention of the international community, particularly the United Nations for building public opinion against war between the two countries and usage of nuclear arsenal of the two countries built up by them over the decades.

Making their intentions absolutely clear in unmistakably direct terms, the document submitted by a consortium of 36 Sikh organisations from Punjab, United Kingdom, Canada, Europe and the United States to the Indian, Pakistani and French Embassies on 26 January, calls for immediate de-escalation of the hostile rhetoric between the two countries and urging the international community to do exert diplomatic pressure enabling the two countries to engage in dialogue and avert war, which is likely to bring about nuclear catastrophe in the region, particularly in the homeland of the Sikhs –Punjab.

The Sikh nation, presently sandwiched between the two warring cultures, stands for universal peace and brotherhood. Historically we have been wronged a lot and the present war hysteria, which presents a dangerous situation for the entire region, is likely to engage the Sikh people in their severest test ever and is also likely to annihilate thousands of innocent people on both sides of the Radcliffe line, but the majority of the brunt is likely to be borne by the Sikhs and Punjabis.

Advocate activist Ranjit Singh Srai, who was instrumental in bringing about this rare feat amongst the Sikhs said that, "Sikhs are looking for the UN to intervene on their behalf if the Indian government fails to act on their demands."

The 36 Sikh organisations which submitted the Appeal

American Gurdwara Prabandakh Committee, Anti-defamation Sikh Council for Freedom of Khalistan, USA, Baba Banda Singh Bahadhur Society Abbotsford, Canada, Council of Khalistan, Dal Khalsa International, UK, Daljit Singh Bittu, Presidium Member, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) (Panch Pardhani), Punjab, Dr. Amarjit Singh, Director, Khalistan Affairs Centre, Washington DC, USA, Gurdwara Sahib Kalgidhar Darbar, Abbotsford, Canada, Gurdwara Sahib Dasmesh Darbar, Surrey Canada, International Sikh Youth Federation (Germany), Italy Sikh Council, Justice (Retd.) Ajit Singh Bains, Convenor, Punjab Human Rights Organisation, Kanwarpal Singh, Political Affairs Spokesman, Dal Khalsa, Punjab, Kashmir Singh, Gen-Secretary, British Sikh Federation, Khalistan Government in exile, Khalsa Human Rights, UK, Kulwant Singh Dhesi, British Sikh Council, Mohkam Singh, Convenor Khalsa Action Committee, Punjab, Narain Singh, Shiromani Sikh Council International, Punjab, National Council of Gurdwaras, UK, National Sikh Committee Italy, Navkiran Singh, Advocate, General Secretary, Lawyers for Human Rights International, Punjab, Ontario Gurdwara Committee (OGC), Canada, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), UK, Shiromani Akali Dal (Punj Pardhani), Canada, Shiromani Akali Dal (Punj Pardhani), France, Shiromani Sikh Council, UK, Sikh Council of Belgium, Sikh Federation (UK), Sikh Foundation Switzerland, Sikh Secretariat, UK, Sikh Youth of America, Simranjit Singh Mann, President, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), Punjab, United Sikh Federation, Canada, Voices for Freedom, Young Sikhs (UK).

He further pointed that leaving nothing to chance, the list of demands has been forwarded to various UN forums in Geneva as well. On behalf of the multifarious religious, social, human rights and political bodies of the Sikh Nation, the urgent appeal was presented to the embassies in London by Amrik Singh Gill, President Sikh Federation (UK), Amrik Singh Sahota, OBE, President, Council of Khalistan, Balbir Singh, Shiromani Sikh Council, UK, Councillor Gurdial Singh Atwal, Chairman, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), UK and Co-ordinator SAD(A) International Committee, Gurmej Singh Gill, Prime Minister, Khalistan Government in Exile and Manmohan Singh, Vice-President Dal Khalsa International.

"Neither India nor Pakistan has been willing to sign up to the UN\'s non-proliferation regime or unilaterally renounce their nuclear weapons capabilities in order to create a nuclear weapons-free South Asia, underlining their willingness to use such weapons. The Sikhs, for whom the consequences are unimaginable, therefore have no alternative but to appeal to the international community to take immediate steps to stop yet another calamity imminently befalling them" says the well-drafted appeal.

Spelling out the need for such a united step by the Sikhs, the spokesperson said that, Sikhs stood for peace in the Indian sub-continent and wanted the two countries to resolve all disputes politically, taking into account the aspirations of the Sikh nation. He said that if it is not so done as part of a conflict-resolution process, the geo-political situation has the full potential to degenerate into a Gaza-type human rights nightmare for the Sikh people in their homeland Punjab.

Tracing the track of Sikh sufferings from 1947 to the present times, the appeal condemns the consistent denial of the right to self-determination to the Sikhs, upholds Sikh nationhood and proclaims that "Until those sovereign rights are restored, which we submit will help provide an enduring solution to the problems of the region as a whole, it is the duty of the international community to deliver that protection and prevent the potential annihilation of the world's fifth largest religion."

Speaking for Sikhs, Muslims, Christians and all others living in this region, this urgent action appeal categorically asks "The UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, the UN Human Rights Commission and other UN bodies to establish a dialogue with Indian and Pakistani leaders to make them fully aware of their human rights obligations towards the Sikhs and to formally warn those leaderships that any breach of international law or mass rights violations in this context will result in action by a duly constituted criminal court."

When was the last time you came across such a unified Sikh effort? It surely calls for commendation by the Sikhs in Punjab and the Sikh Diaspora across the globe which is ever anxious about the political situation at ground zero in the Sikh homeland.

28 January 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Nokia to acquire bit-side GmbH

Espoo, Finland/Berlin, Germany - Nokia and bit-side GmbH today announced
that an agreement has been signed for Nokia to acquire substantially all
assets of bit-side. Bit-side is a privately owned Berlin-based professional
services and software company with 39 employees. By acquiring bit-side Nokia
will strengthen and accelerate its mobile development for Nokia Maps.

"Acquiring bit-side enables Nokia to offer consumers the world-leading
mobile location applications, such as Maps, along with routing and
navigation at an accelerated speed" said Michael Halbherr, vice president
and head of social location, Nokia. "Nokia has been working with bit-side
since 2007, and bit-side has become a strategic development partner to

"Nokia believes that context plays a pivotal role in the evolution of the
Internet. To make the Internet truly personal, Nokia is building the ability
for people to always know where they are and what is around them. Moreover,
to know where their friends are and what they are doing and how they are
feeling. Nokia calls this social location," said Michael Halbherr, vice
president and head of social location, Nokia.

"Joining Nokia, the world leader in mobility, is an exciting opportunity for
us," says Thom Brenner, managing director & partner, bit-side GmbH. "Our
small team has brought many innovative mobile products to life and being
part of Nokia will be like a catalyst to this. We share Nokia's visions, on
social and location related services and the future of their enabling

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected
to be completed in the first quarter of 2009. Bit-side will be integrated to
Nokia's Services unit.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Extremly needy Satinder kaur awaiting for Some help

Extremly Needy Satinder kaur awaiting for some help.

Satinder kaur ( 18) young village girl from Bassi Pathana fighting heart to save the life her ailing brother sunny (15). Who gad na accident on 18th of december last year. One of his legs has been removed and now he has to under go through another surgery because of spectic in his wound at PGI chandigarh.

Satinder is all alone in this fight as her father Amarjeet Singh is allready admitted at PGI for last 8 months after the failurier of his nervous system. Amarjeet Singh was a daily waiger serving as " Pathi" ( Gurbani Reciter) in local gurudwars.

Cicumstances forced satinder left her regaular study Now she is pursuing her bachelors privately. She is mature enough to understand the duties of an elder child in the family.Her father was a daily waiger and there is no other earning hand to them is the matter of worry and they don't have a single penny for treatment.

Manjeet Kaur Satinder's Mother taking care of Father-Son deou in the hospital and satinder wonders all around in the search of some financial help.Her maternal uncle is helping them right now who him self is a private business person and also has to support a large family.

Docter asked them to stop treatment because of the non payment of the bills
i.e 80,000 to 100000 for both father and son.except the expendature of second operation of sunny .

She got the amount of ruppess 5,000/- only from the Gurudwara Parbhandak committee fatehgarh sahib and eagerly waiting for some NGO or anybody else to ocme and help this young lady to come out of this .

Gurpreet Singh


Friday, January 23, 2009

Two Indian Sikh Brother\'s Created One Step Source Website

India, May 24, 2009
Surinder Singh

In these days, you'll rarely find person who can't use computer. Person can easily communicate with other one at anywhere in the world. Youngsters are found madly chatting in cafes & finding new easy onlie sources under one roof. Chat applications, messengers the resources for this. Now on cell-phone is not device which can used to talk. So, world is connected via internet networks.

This is the best example is I am going to tell, how person made collection of words most online destination sources under one roof by setting a website. you will find your self around the world just a click away.

Gee2 Solution Inc. created by two young sikh brothers named Gurpreet& Gurpreet both names are same so Gee2 Solutions Inc. Borned. both are devoted to thier way of working. They are proud to anounce thier success on this site and become popular with kids,youngsters& with all age of people around the world.Thay created a online public place where you can find everything from which platform you want to buy. Example :- If you are going to grab a pizza and leaving for market and dont know the name and place where to buy then before you leaving for your stuff you can get every detail about from which food providers you want to buy after search one their site also there are sevrels other eatable service providers name to your taste.They said we thank to all our valurable visitors and with this promise we will son come with more activities and goals.

ISP Network A one step source Junction for all your online needs.

A one step source Junction for all your online needs


A group of young sikh boys from ludhiana who created a web site call it a one step source for all your essential destinations under one can click to this website and find the world on your fingersteps. just a click ahead. you will get everything with diffrent manners while you are looking to send some gift to somone who love and enable to find best sources or services providers, then stop worried about and searching just log on and you will get many ways to meet your requirement junctions.There are many wayouts can easily findout on this site. if people are getting bored to logon old facinated sites and looking something new to do then this is good platform to get all your best online service provider sources around the world and get more close to your love ones who used to do the thing on that manners.we are proud to introduce this one step source junction to the meet world requirements. We are also proud to be sikh and become first to provide this service. Our team is very dedicated and passionated about work with full of zeal and determination.

SikhPress wish these young sikh boys to change the way to get everything under one roof.

Gurjeet Singh


Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal and the Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal today wished the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh good health and expressed the confidence that the proposed treatment for which the Prime Minister is to undergo would result in an even healthier condition.

The Chief Minister telephoned the Prime Minister to enquire his well being and conveyed his best wishes for his health.




Outlines his Vision to Make Punjab as a Front Runner State


Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal today formally assumed the office of Deputy Chief Minister Punjab amidst lot of fanfare and enthusiasm shown by the senior leaders and party workers of SAD-BJP alliance.

Immediately after taking over the office as Deputy Chief Minister, Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal had an interaction with media persons and outlined his vision to make Punjab as the front-runner state in the country. Mr. Badal profusely thanked the Almighty for giving him an opportunity to serve the people of Punjab and state. He said that people of Punjab had lot of expectations from him and he would try to satiate every section of the society and sought people\'s whole-hearted cooperation to translate their aspirations and dreams into a reality.

Referring to some key areas of development and the welfare of the people, Mr. Badal said that the state government had constituted an Administrative Reforms Commission to streamline and simplify the 70 public utility services both in police and civil in order to save people from the undue harassment and corruption. He hoped that the entire recommendations of the commission would be implemented in toto by December 2009 to make the system of administration more accountable and transparent.

On power sector, Deputy Chief Minister said that our government from day one initiated concerted efforts under the stewardship of Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal to make Punjab a power surplus state. He said that with in 22 months the SAD-BJP government had been able to put two mega thermal plants at Talwandi Sabo and Goindwal Sahib with an installed capacity of 1980 MW and 540 MW respectively on the ground and the remaining two one at Gidderbaha with generation capacity of 2640 MW and Rajpura 1320 MW were in the active stages of implementation. He reiterated that it was the endeavour of our government to make Punjab as a power surplus by the end of the forth year of the regime of the present government.

Mr. Badal especially emphasized on the development and the welfare of the youth, he said that he had kept the department of Sports & Youth Services to formulate a concrete policy to ensure their participation in the development process in the state as 70% of the population was below the age of 35. He also announced that the Youth Development Board would be constituted soon to give due representation to the youth in the overall development and growth of the state.
Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that the model of inclusive growth and balanced development of rural and urban sectors would be implemented in right earnest. Likewise, the upliftment of the poor, the down-trodden and the dalits would remain on the top of the agenda of the government. He said that our youth had a tremendous potential and unbounded energy which should be channelized for constructive purposes and also underlined the need to save them from the menace of drug addiction for which he announced to launch a crusade against this malady.

Earlier, Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal accompanied by his wife Mrs. Harsimrat Kaur and his brother-in-law former Information & Public Relations Minister Mr. Bikram Singh Majithia reached his office who offered him sweets on assuming the charge of the office of Deputy Chief Minister.

Prominent amongst others who were present on the occasion included State Unit BJP President Prof.Rajinder Bhandari, Forest & Medical Education Minister Mr. Tikshan Sud, Cooperation Minister Capt. Kanwaljit Singh, Tourism Minister Hira Singh Gabria Animal Husbandry Minister Gulzar Singh Ranike, Advisor to Chief Minister DS Cheema, Media Advisor to Chief Minister Mr. Harcharan Bains, Chief Secretary Mr. RI Singh, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Mr. DS Guru, Additional Principal Secretary to Chief Minister and Director Information & Public Relations Mr. Gagandeep Singh Brar and Additional Principal Secretary to Deputy Chief Minister AK Mahajan. Besides several MLAs and senior leaders of SAD-BJP presented bouquets to their beloved youthful Deputy Chief Minister on the occasion.

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Nokia Board of Directors convenes Annual General Meeting 2009

Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee's proposals for Board composition and remuneration
Nokia Corporation
Stock Exchange Release
January 22, 2009 at 13.15 (CET +1)
Espoo, Finland - Nokia announced today that Nokia Board of Directors has resolved to convene the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 and that the Board and its Committees will submit the below proposals to the Annual General Meeting.
- Proposal to pay a dividend of EUR 0.40 per share
- Isabel Marey-Semper, CFO, EVP responsible for Strategy at PSA Peugeot Citroën, proposed as new member of the Board
- Board remuneration proposed to stay the same as in 2008
- Proposal to authorize the Board to repurchase shares to maintain flexibility but with no current plans to repurchase shares in 2009
- External auditor proposed to be re-elected
Proposal to pay a dividend
Nokia's Board of Directors will propose to the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 that a dividend of EUR 0.40 per share be paid from the fiscal year 2008. The dividend ex-date would be April 24, 2009, the record date April 28, 2009 and the pay date on or about May 13, 2009. The actual dividend pay date outside Finland will be determined by the practices of the intermediary banks transferring the dividend payments.
Proposals on Board composition and remuneration
The Board's Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee will propose to the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 that the number of Board members be eleven and that all current Board members be re-elected as members of the Nokia Board of Directors for a term until the close of the Annual General Meeting in 2010: Georg Ehrnrooth, Lalita D. Gupte, Bengt Holmström, Henning Kagermann, Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, Per Karlsson, Jorma Ollila, Marjorie Scardino, Risto Siilasmaa and Keijo Suila.
In addition, the Committee will propose that Isabel Marey-Semper be elected as a new member of the Nokia Board for the same term, ie as from the Annual General Meeting in 2009 until the close of the Annual General Meeting in 2010. Ms. Marey-Semper is Chief Financial Officer, EVP responsible for Strategy at PSA Peugeot Citroën. With PhD in neuro-pharmacology and MBA as educational background, she has a diverse working experience, including Chief Operating Officer of the Intellectual Property and Licensing Business Unit of Thomson and Vice President, Corporate Planning at Saint-Gobain.
As to the Board remuneration, the Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee will propose that the annual fee payable to the Board members elected at the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 for the term until the close of the Annual General Meeting in 2010 be unchanged from 2008 and be as follows: EUR 440 000 for the Chairman, EUR 150 000 for the Vice Chairman, and EUR 130 000 for each member; for the Chairman of the Audit Committee and the Chairman of the Personnel Committee an additional annual fee of EUR 25 000; and for each member of the Audit Committee an additional annual fee of EUR 10 000. Further, the Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee will propose that approximately 40% of the remuneration be paid in Nokia Corporation shares purchased from the market.
Other proposals to the Annual General Meeting 2009
The Board of Directors will propose that the Annual General Meeting authorized the Board to resolve to repurchase a maximum of 360 million Nokia shares. The proposed maximum number of shares corresponds to less than 10 per cent of all the shares of the Company. The shares may be repurchased in order to develop the capital structure of the Company. In addition, the shares may be repurchased in order to finance or carry out acquisitions or other arrangements, to settle the Company's equity-based incentive plans, to be transferred for other purposes, or to be cancelled. The shares may be repurchased either through a tender offer made to all shareholders on equal terms, or through public trading from the market. The authorization is proposed to be effective until June 30, 2010 and it is proposed to terminate the corresponding authorization resolved by the Annual General Meeting on May 8, 2008.
The repurchase authorization is proposed to maintain flexibility, but the Board has no current plans for repurchases during 2009. The Board intends to cancel a majority of the shares held by the Company prior to the Annual General Meeting 2009.
The Board's Audit Committee will propose to the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 that PricewaterhouseCoopers Oy be re-elected as the Company's auditor, and that the auditor be reimbursed according to the invoice, and in compliance with the purchase policy approved by the Audit Committee. 
The complete proposals by the Board and its Committees to the Annual General Meeting on April 23, 2009 will be available on Nokia's website at The proposals will be included in the notice to the Annual General Meeting which will be published later.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Punjab Mandi Board plans e-tendering from next month

In order to bring transparency in the tendering process, the Punjab Agricultural Marketing Board, also known as the Punjab Mandi Board, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with state-run Indian Telephone Industries Ltd for implementing etendering. With this, the board became the first oraganisation in Punjab to implement the internet based tendering.

The system will be functional from February 15. It is worth noting that board receives tenders to the tune of Rs 300-400 crore every year for construction and maintenance of mandis and rural roads. The proposed move is likely to benefit the contractors, who previously had to procure the tender documents by visiting the respective offices.

Punjab Mandi Board Chairman Ajmer Singh Lakhowal said: "The Punjab government has decided to implement e-governance in the state on a big scale. According to this decision, the Punjab Mandi Board has taken the initiative to get tenders on the internet. So we have signed an MoU with Indian Telephone Industries Ltd for implementing etendering system." The e-tendering process will also lead to substantial saving in conveyance of both contractors and the department. Further, it will bring total transparency in the departments. In addition, it will bring more competition, resulting in saving in tenders."

Commenting on the future plans, he added, "To give a major push to horticulture produce and benefit the farmers at large, we have hired the services of Punjab Infrastructure Development Board to prepare a feasibility report to develop a modern vegetables and fruits wholesale market (under National Horticulture Mission) at Mohali. A detailed study is likely to be completed within seven months and this may also result in export of perishables through the upcoming Chandigarh International Airport. For the project, land measuring 20 acres is already lying with the Punjab Mandi Board, and also in near future it will acquire more land, if the feasibility report demands more area.

South Korean court releases Capt Jasprit Singh Chawla on bail

SEOUL/DEHRADUN: After Uttarakhand Sikhs raised a lot of noise forcing Indian external affairs ministry to pull some levers and exercise diplomatic pressures, a South Korean court finally released Captain Jasprit Singh Chawla and Chief Officer Shyam Chetan. Both were bailed from jail pending a final decision of the Supreme Court. Bail was set at $ 10,000 for each officer.

For the first time, the treatment of the Hebei Two has brought together global union federation ITF, ship owners' and managers' associations INTERTANKO, Intercargo and InterManager, the International Maritime Employers' Committee (IMEC) along with Indian Trade Unions, BIMCO and the International Group of P+I Clubs, to name but a few.

Consequently, the trade associations and unions involved in the planned action – V.Ships, the ITF, INTERTANKO, Intercargo and IMEC - have agreed to cancel the rally scheduled for January 23 in London. The participants believe that a postponement of the planned action will create a better environment for a successful resolution to this long running saga.

Earlier, the Sikh community in Uttarakhand had asked the Indian Government to take up on top priority basis the case of release of the two Merchant Navy officers who were languishing in the South Korean jail after being convicted in the Hebei Spirit oil spill case of December 2007.

The two released officers with their
families at a grand reunion

The Punjab-origin Dehradun-based mariner Captain Jasprit Singh Chawla was sentenced to one-and-a-half-year's imprisonment by a South Korean court for the oil spill, his colleague to a lesser jail term.

The tanker was tied at a jetty when a crane of Samsung Company hit it and this led to an oil spill for which the two were being held as accused. Both were convicted for negligence in the Hebei Spirit Oil spill, and had appealed the decision in the South Korean Supreme Court. It normally takes between six months to a year for the Supreme Court of Korea to decide on an appeal against a district court judgment.

The Korean high court held the two officers responsible for the spill. Both were sentenced to imprisonment and a fine of 13,990 US dollars. The convictions in the Korean High Court in December 2008 came after their acquittal in a lower court.

Uttarakhand's Sikh Federation has strongly taken up the case. Last Friday, the Sikh Federation had organized a rally which had marched up to the Collectorate in Dehradun where members submitted a memorandum to the district magistrate Amit Negi. A demonstration was also held in Delhi.

Manjeet Singh Chawla, Captain Chawla's father, said he had received an assurance from the Prime Minister's Office that the matter was being looked into.

Jasprit Singh Chawla and his wife Gurpreet Kaur with their son Tegpreet Singh and Bineet Kaur
(A file photo, courtesy The Korean Herald)

How Jasprit Singh Chawla Kept His Faith

The one thing that Jasprit Singh Chawla clung to during the days of ordeal was his Sikh faith, getting up every single day at 5:30 am for his Nitnem.

Back home, Jasprit Kaur Chawla\'s lovely wife Gurpreet Kaur Chawla could hardly ever sleep peacefully all these months. Her year long fight was exhausting and with the system being so apathetic, it also perhaps gave her an insight into the unfairness built in into the way government machinery works. But there was not a moment when she was not praying to Akalpurakh for her husband\'s safety and return.

Actually, the guilty verdict was not even expected, particularly because the crew members had already been acquitted earlier by a lower court. \"The chief officer did not even get to say goodbye to his family,\" said Capt. Sharad Saldanha of V.Ships, the company that manages the tanker. \"They got to meet the next day. But the families were not present in court, because none of us expected such a total U-turn of judgment. Not only us but the whole maritime community; all the international organizations are totally shocked.\"

How it happened

On Dec. 7, 2007 a crane barge broke free from one of the barges towing it and ran into the side of the Hebei Spirit, which was at anchor. The collision caused 10,800 tons of crude oil to flow into the sea, polluting much of Korea\'s coastline.

The event was dubbed Korea\'s worst-ever environmental disaster, while local tourism and fishing industries were severely damaged.

Environmental groups say it will take years to clean up the damage.

A lower court had cleared the two Indian seamen of wrongdoing in July, but then an appeals court sentenced Chawla to 18 months for negligence in avoiding the collision and for not doing enough to limit the spill. His first officer was sentenced to eight months

The ruling has met with condemnation from the shipping community. The International Transport Workers Federation and other shipping bodies have both slammed the verdict, calling it a vindictive decision.

\"The captain is a very religious man. He gets up at 5:30 every morning to say his prayers. In fact, when he arrived in prison, his main concerns were getting his armlet, which is a religious thing, and his turban,\" Saldanha had told The Korean Herald. He used to spend most of his day praying and reading religious books.

\"He doesn\'t want to read anything else - he just wants to read religious books. He wants to know what is happening outside with this case and religious books. Other than that he is not interested in reading.\"

Chawla, who does not eat non-vegetarian food for religious reasons, avoided most of the prison food as vegetarian options were too little. He survived on just rice and water since the 10th of December. His colleagues were well aware that his health was deteriorating. Chawla was kept in a small individual cell and was let out for one hour a day.

Back home, Gurpreet was doing her level best to keep the children studying and not letting them know that their father was in jail. The son is 7-year-old and the daughter is four. Responding to son\'s sensitive questions about papa was perhaps one of the most difficult tasks. \"Why are you going early in the morning daily to meet him?\" he would often ask as Gurpreet would be networking to see what was happening. Soon, the seven year old was to find out from the commotion that was always there around the mom. \'Mama, why is papa in jail?\' Naturally, it affected the health of Chawla\'s wider family that included his old parents. Jasprit is the only son of his parents, and his grandmother has been bedridden for eight months. She is happy and waiting to see him.

The wife of Shyam Chetan is due in Korea this week. His father, Commodore DR Syam is a high-ranking seaman and is working to raise awareness and support for the case.

Indian Embassy First Secretary Kirat Vaze was charged with looking after the welfare of these two officers.

Sukhbir To Be Sworn In As Deputy CM In Amritsar On Wednesday

CHANDIGARH: \"A decision has been taken, and the BJP High Command has been informed. There is no question of going back on it.\" Parkash Singh Badal was blatant and nonchalant at the same time on Friday when reporters asked him about Punjab BJP leadership\'s reaction to plans to make his son Sukhbir Singh Badal the Deputy CM.

On Saturday, BJP\'s Punjab leadership had more insults coming as the party\'s national president Rajnath Singh said he and L K Advani had given the go ahead to the move to make Sukhbir Badal the Deputy CM.

Now, it is official. Sukhbir Singh Badal will be sworn in as Deputy Chief Minister in Amritsar on Wednesday, January 21, in the presence of father Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal. Sukhbir\'s brother-in-law (wife\'s brother) Bikramjit Singh Majithia is expected to resign on Sunday evening to create a slot in the Cabinet to adjust Sukhbir as the Constitution does not allow more than 18 ministers.

Governor S.F. Rodrigues has already been informed and his availability is assured. Massive preparations are now on to bring in hordes of party workers in buses and trucks to make it a mammoth affair in keeping with Sukhbir\'s grandiose style of functioning.

The Badals will be creating history in India by being the first father-son CM-Deputy CM duo. Sukhbir\'s cousin Manpreet Singh Badal is also a Minister in the Cabinet and holds the all important portfolio of Finance. Badal\'s son-in-law Adesh Pratap Singh Kairon is also a Cabinet Minister. Sukhbir too is likely to get heavyweight portfolios.

Even as sections of the media and political domain wondered about the virtually daring act of the Akali Dal to have a father-son duo as CM and Deputy CM in a state which has a coalition government, that too without taking the coalition partner into confidence, BJP\'s Punjab affairs incharge at the Centre, Arun Jaitley, counselled patience to his party men.

But for the Badals, the icing on the cake was a statement by Rajnath Singh who spilled the beans that the Parkash Singh Badal-Sukhbir Singh Badal duo had met him and Advani in Delhi a few days back and had sought the clearance of the BJP high command.

The revelations may have given Badal somerespite from the attacks from the state BJP but also exposes the crookedness involved. Neither father nor the son had earlier let it be known that the drama was pre-scripted. In fact, the demand to induct Sukhbir in the Cabinet was raised through smalltime Akali limpet leaders who together are derisively known in Punjab as the HAD - Haarya Akali Dal (Losers\' Akali Dal). These include Tota Singh, Gurdev Singh, Balwinder Singh Bhunder etc etc.

Sections of the media in Punjab, mostly perceived close to Sukhbir, indicated that he could be entrusted with portfolios of Home Affairs, Power, Housing and Urban Development, currently with the Chief Minister. The last independent Home Minister was Kanwaljit Singh; most of the time Home portfolio has rested with the CM in Punjab.

Bikramjit Singh Majithia

But Bikramjit Singh Majithia, making a grand show of self-sacrifice by issuing a statement that he will be only too willing and happy to make way for Sukhbir in the Cabinet, tried to become the metaphorical martyr by dipping his index finger in someone else\'s blood, to twist a Punjab phrase, but with the assurance that the magnanimous paterfamilias was likely to not allow such a sacrifice go unnoticed and he could be rewarded with a Lok Sabha ticket or a Rajya Sabha nomination.

Bikram Majithia currently had the departments of Information and Public Relations, Public Health and Science and Environment and of these, the PR is likely to stay with Sukhbir.

Punjab Cabinet already has 18 ministers and Indian Constitution does not permit more than 15 percent of MLAs in the state Assembly to become ministers. Punjab Assembly has 117 members.

Calibrated moves to concentrate all powers within the Badal family and its acolytes have been on for quite some time. No wonder Sukhbir\'s contribution to the election campaign in the last Assembly election was tom-tommed as something of an earthshaking achievement through massive advertisements and statements in the media. Later, he was made the acting party president after a sham-show of senior Akali leaders pleading with Badal Sr. to let them please have Sukhbir as leader of the Akali Dal.

Soon, there were demands at a PAC meeting that he made a full time President of the party.

Parkash Singh Badal looked utterly ridiculous as his tears had welled up and he \"had to agree\" to such a strong request from party members. Once Sukhbir was made the Akali Dal president, the family made a little discovery after reading about it all in the media. Sukhbir had made history by becoming the first president of Akali Dal, or of any faction of the Akali Dal, who was not an \'Amritdhari\'. For months, Sukhbir resisted getting himself baptised but then shrewd Badal Sr\'s advice prevailed and one fine morning, the man who celebrates everything in grand style, almost sneaked into a gurdwara to partake of Amrit, the ceremony kept very private lest it harmed the grand secular image of the Badals, earned with such dexterity by hob-nobbing with the RSS-BJP and participating in countless Aartis and Jagratas.

BJP says Deputy CM post irrelevant

Manoranjan Kalia

Coalition partner BJP which has 19 seats in the 117-strong Assembly and whose support is crucial to the survival of the Akali Dal, has now claimed that the Deputy CM post was irrelevant and should not be there at all.

Constitutionally, the Deputy CM post simply does not exist but across the country, ruling parties in states are known to create such a post as matter of political convenience. The same BJP which is now terming the Deputy CM office as \"irrelevant\" was in the news for many weeks asking that its Cabinet Minister Manoranjan Kalia be made the Deputy CM, a demand which the Akali Dal resisted and later had its way with the central leadership of the BJP.

The BJP leaders said they met many senior leaders in Delhi and have conveyed their views. The BJP is Punjab is particularly miffed at not being taken into confidence in the matter. So brash was the move from the House of Badals that a helicopter was specially sent to pick up limpets like Tota Singh and Gurdev Singh Badal from Takhtoopura so that they can come and raise the demand as per the pre-decided script in the Core Committee. When Parkash Singh Badal flew with Manoranjan Kalia the next day to Jalandhar, poor Kalia waited all through the 40 minutes of sortie for Badal to broach the subject but he kept mum.

\"I was expecting (Chief Minister) Badal Sahib to explain SAD\'s decision when both of us were travelling from Jalandhar to Chandigarh yesterday but he opted not to talk on the issue,\" Kalia later said.

Minutes later, in the presence of Kalia who had told reporters that no such proposal has come to the BJP, Badal not confirmed his son will be Deputy CM but also delivered a shocker by saying the BJP high command had already been informed and it will communicate to the BJP party leadership in the state.

Clearly, the BJP is justified in saying that the \"principles of an alliance have been violated\" but it remains a moot question whether the central leadership will allow it to plough its lone furrow.

The BJP tried to make another point by saying that in coalition governments, it had never happened that the larger partner walks away with both posts of CM and Deputy CM.

Two Deputy CMs offer rejected

The BJP has rejected the Akali Dal\'s offer of having two Deputy CM. Sukhbir\'s elevation immediately reduces the stature of BJP\'s Manoranjan Kalia who was virtually conducting himself as a Deputy CM and whose mug hitherto stared out of all government advertisements even though he is only a Cabinet minister.

It is not clear from which seat will Sukhbir, currently an MP, will fight an assembly election but it could well be Bikramjit Majithia\'s seat.

Interestingly, and ironically, the move to make Sukhbir a Deputy CM came close on the heels of senior Akali Minister Capt Kanwaljit Singh underlining the resentment within the Akali Dal over the undue projection of Sukhbir Badal as the only leader who counts. Kanwaljit had said that Sukhbir\'s political fate was connected to the outcome of Parliamentary elections, a phase that the Akalis are likely to find tough.

Later, Kanwaljit did not press the point beyond a point, a strategy that he has perfected every time he wants to make a point, but clearly the point was either not registered or is now being outscored.

20 January 2009

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