Barring a handful of Sikh leaders and one prominent Sikh body, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement to observe December 26 as ‘VeerBaal Diwas’ is being widely appreciated as a measure to win the hearts of Sikhs and officially give tributes to Sahibzada’s by any Indian PM.
Meanwhile, Damdami Taksal, a Sikh hardliner body, which was once headed by Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, has not only hailed Modi for his gesture but also lauded him for being the first Prime Minister ever in the history of India to have fulfilled his duty.
“It is Modi’s gesture to make the world know about the momentous courage shown by Sahibzadas’to the world which none of the government in India’s past 325 years of history has done so,” said the head of Damdami Taksal Baba Harnam Singh Khalsa while talking to Zee News on Monday.
On the other hand, Shiromani Akali Dal (B) backed Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has tried to undermine the significance of the announcement made by PM Modi claiming that the announcement was neither endorsed by the Panth nor it was recommended by the Sikh high priests.
Shiromani Akali Dal (Delhi) president Parmjit Singh Sarna said “We welcome the state recognition of Shaheedi of Baba Zorawar Singh and Baba Fateh Singh but at the same time we call upon Modi government to name the day as Shahibzade Diwas or Baba Zorawwar/Baba Fateh Singh Diwas”.
“Every child of the country will be aware of the bravery and martyrdom of four Sahibzads,” he added.
Another former president of DSGMC Manjit Singh GK opined that there wasn’t any ill will behind declaring the December 26 as Veer Baal Diwas since PM might not be aware of the Maryada (Sikh code of religious conduct) but, he said, it was the duty of BJP’s Sikh leadership to have told the Modi. However, he said the name could still be changed.
Reacting to the PM’s announcement president of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee(DSGMC) Manjinder Singh Sirsa “I heartily welcome the decision to observe “Veer Bal Day” every year on December 26.
“The dignity of Sikh history will reach door to door,” said SGPC president Harjinder Singh Dhami while appealing to the acting Jathedar of Akal Takht Giani Harpreet Singh to take the lead on this matter of recognition of the martyrdom day of younger Sahibzadas as ‘Veer BaalDiwas’ by PM Modi.
“Panthic traditions, beliefs, and Sikh concerns are very unique and incomparable, therefore, any decision related to them should be taken on the orders from Akal Takht,” said Dhami.
At the same time, he said that paying homage to the Guru’s may have come out of a sense of respect by PM but it cannot be considered acceptable by the Panth (Sikh community).
It was on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Sikhk’s tenth master Guru Gobind Singh that Modi had announced to observe December 26 as Veer Baal Diwas as a tribute to the exemplary courage shown by Sahibzada’s and their quest for justice.