Other States

‘Allow women to perform kirtan at Golden Temple’

The Punjab Assembly on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution urging the Akal Takht and the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee to allow Sikh women to sing hymns in the sanctum sanctorum of the Golden Temple in Amritsar.

The resolution was moved by Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa who said Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev fought against caste and gender inequality throughout his life and this discrimination against women should also end.

He rejected an Akali leader’s claim that according to Sikh ‘ rehat maryada ’ (religious code of conduct), women are not allowed to perform ‘kirtan’ at the Darbar Sahib. He pointed out that even Akali leader Jagir Kaur had sought permission for Sikh women to perform ‘kirtan sewa’ at the shrine.

‘No discrimination’

“There was no mention in the Sikh history of any discrimination against women,” said Mr. Bajwa.

Only Sikh men perform ‘kirtan’ at the Golden Temple as of now.

Akali MLA Parminder Singh Dhindsa said that efforts were being made to depict that the Akal Takht or the SGPC are deliberately refusing women to sing hymns at the Golden Temple. He said he agreed with the feelings of Mr. Bajwa, but asserted that the Akal Takht was already aware of the issue.

The Akali Dal later came out in support. Lok Insaaf Party MLA Simarjeet Singh Bains thanked Mr. Bajwa for the same.

As per the resolution, “Guru Nanak Dev had visualised a society in which there would be no place for discrimination or distinction on the basis of caste or creed, social status or gender, a society that is to be based upon the principle of egalitarianism and committed to welfare of all... It is, however, unfortunate that the Sikh women are not allowed to perform ‘kirtan’ in Darbar Sahib, Amritsar. This session of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha appeals to the Jathedar of Akal Takht and the SGPC to end this discriminatory practice that violates the essence of Gurbani and allow Sikh women to perform kirtan.”

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Printable version | Aug 2, 2022 11:06:15 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/allow-women-to-perform-kirtan-at-golden-temple/article29926523.ece