Via Sikh Fed UK
London – 21 October 2016
When the International Sikh Youth Federation (ISYF) was founded in September 1984 following the attack on the Darbar Sahib Complex in June 1984 the organisation aligned itself not only to the principles and doctrines of the Damdami Taksal, but also the establishment of an independent Sikh state, Khalistan. In June 1984 Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale headed up the Damdami Taksal and stated “if the Indian army invaded the Darbar Sahib Complex, the foundation for an independent Sikh state will have been laid.”
The Sikh Federation (UK) when it was formed in September 2003 and was described as the successor body to the ISYF, kept the link to the principles and doctrines of the Damdami Taksal and the objective of establishing an independent Sikh state, Khalistan. In recent years serious questions have however been raised about the policy of the current head of the Damdami Taksal to align and support the Badal-BJP alliance. This despite clear evidence Badal invited the attack on the Darbar Sahib Complex in June 1984 and the BJP/RSS having a distinct objective of undermining the Sikh faith so it leads to its eventual assimilation. This is against everything Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale stood for. The policy is based on short term political expediency rather than any longer term vision consistent with what Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale said regarding the foundation for an independent Sikh state.
Given the commitment of the Sikh Federation (UK) to the objective of establishing an independent Sikh state, Khalistan we disagree with the policy of aligning and supporting the Badal-BJP alliance. The record of the Badal-BJP alliance is poor when it comes to support for the widespread abuse of human rights and giving impunity to police officers involved in extrajudicial killings. A year ago revelations came in the biography of KPS Gill ‘The Paramount Cop’ about the close relationship between this mass murderer and Parkash Singh Badal. The book made clear Badal’s anti-Sikh role as the two would meet regularly in Sector 9 Chandigarh and conspire to hunt and kill a generation of young Sikhs.
After two terms the Badal-BJP alliance fears it is on its way out and resorting to desperate tactics. They are held responsible for grabbing land and real estate and stashing away money in foreign bank accounts, while the people of Punjab face unemployment, the farmer crises, a failing economy and the drugs menace – supply of drugs and widespread addiction – that is destroying future generations. Corruption allegations associated with sifarish (patronage, influence peddling and nepotism) and the use of goons in day-to-day matters is also highly prevalent.
The various internal controversies coming to the fore in recent months involving Baba Ranjit Singh Dhandrianwale and those heading up or linked to the Damdami Taksal and the associated violence are no coincidence in the run up to the Punjab Assembly elections in early 2017. The Badal-BJP alliance benefit, especially in the Sikh Diaspora, from such disputes, divisions and diversionary tactics as the focus deflects away from the devastation they have brought and are bringing on Sikhi and the people of Punjab.
Those in the Sikh Diaspora genuinely committed to Sikhi and the objective of establishing an independent Sikh state, Khalistan need to wise up and keep focused on the ultimate goal and learn from Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale on how to maintain unity and resolve internal differences with minimum effort and resources. We are therefore of the view that large meetings and counter meetings with resolutions and counter resolutions simply add to tensions on all sides, achieve very little and there is a danger that the organisers naively play into the hands of the Badal-BJP alliance. We and others that have credibility and respect are willing to try to help amicably resolve internal differences and reduce tensions. This is best done by establishing a small group genuinely committed to Sikhi and the objective of establishing an independent Sikh state, Khalistan who can try and constructively find an acceptable way forward if there is willingness on all sides to put an end to the matter.
Leadership of the Sikh Federation (UK)
Note: The Damdami Taksal was founded over 300 years ago by Guru Gobind Singh Ji and was entrusted with the responsibility of teaching the reading (santhyia), analysis (vichar) and recitation of the Sikh scriptures. It was first headed up by Shaheed Baba Deep Singh Ji. In recent times the Damdami Taksal has been headed up by Sant Gurbachan Singh Bhindranwale, then Sant Kartar Singh Bhindranwale and from 1977 Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.