DailyPost interview: SGPC President
Prof Kirpal Singh Badungar, who is heading the Punjab State Backward Classes Commission, got elected as the President of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) for the second time on Saturday. After receiving Siropa from the Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh, the new SGPC chief speaks to DailyPost Assistant Editor Rajay Deep. Here go the excerpts of the conversation:
As your name was in the list of probable for past few days, had you been indicated of the assignment before the formal announcement?
No, Not at all. We all, the SGPC members belonging to Shiromani Akali Dal, had given the rights to the party chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Friday. It was for him and his team to evaluate each and everyone willing to perform the service. After completing the process, when the name was proposed in the meeting by my colleague only then I learnt about it happening.
Whom will you like to thank for this giving as you are fortunate to be elevated for the second time?
First and foremost the Akal Purakh and after that, Shiromani Akali Dal (my party) and its leadership for finding me capable being proposed in the meeting and then the members of the SGPC who approved without any antipathy.
Can you share the achievements of your previous tenure?
I am a humble Sikh disciple so I don’t feel like terming any development as my achievement. It is only the Akal Purakh that orders and we just abide by that. Anyways, people know the dates of releasing Nanakshahi calendar and other efforts the SGPC put to spread the GurSikhi (teachings) among masses.
What are the major challenges you see in this new term?
Life is full of challenges and our Sikh gurus have taught us to deal with any ordeal. We are brave enough to beat any challenge. Whereas the SGPC’s functioning is concerned, not on the Sikhs, everyone will appreciate it as our duty is to take the Guru’s principle among masses which puts emphasis on the welfare of mankind. Rest, the issues related to desecration of Guru Granth Sahib and other challenges are all in our notice and with the consultation of the whole body we will take the steps forward.
As you admit the desecration as a major issue, what corrective measures will you take to deal with the situation?
We will make public aware. The Sikh Baani (teachings) will be disseminated among all. The SGPC will create a Lok Lehar, where the society will itself rise to the situation and ensure that no notorious activity may disturb the peace and harmony of the society.
Do the repeated instances of holy books catching fire in gurdwaras bother you?
Yes, such instances disturb us a lot but there may be various reasons for such happenings including short circuit. Without challenging the investigation agencies doing the job to unearth if some malicious act was behind the instances, we will create a better infrastructure to place the holy books in future.
In the past sometime various new sects have emerged and the data shows that percentage of Sikh population in decreasing across the world. What is your take on it?
As I told you, we will create Lok Lehar and make people adopt the Sikh tenets by making all apprised of the gurus’ teachings. Gradually, the efforts will show results. Rest, we have no issue with any sect if it grows in compliance with the Constitution of India but the only concern is that none should hurt the sentiments of Sikhs. One can go through the history and observe that we have always helped others without discriminating on any basis. The SGPC also keeps deep regards for the whole of Sant Samaj.
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