Monday, June 05, 2006

Roots And Wings: 1984's Answer to You O India



On 22nd Anniversary of your attack on my Nation

Pre - 1984

I was merely a little girl then,
I lived far away from Punjab
I read the biased news about my people in your papers
I grew up believing we were wrong.

In your text books O India
Sikhi was just another stream off your Noble Heritage
Gone astray by militant philosophy of the tenth Guru
And in present times it did not make sense.

We grew up being ridiculed
By teachers, playmates and street goers
fighting prejudice everyday
And being ashamed of our own selves.

My parents were busy making ends meet
They were the children of the 1947 displacement
They had no time for sharing Sikh life and pride
They lost it somewhere with all the socio-economic strife.

So I grew up confused without an identity
With you telling how you did a favor on us refugees
I did not know about Sikh history and heritage
And its contribution to your freedom, power and existence.

But, we had a Sufi [1] worker at our business
He was so spiritual and had a sense of wisdom
I always found him longing to touch the feet of Guru’s Sikhs
He always told me that Gur-Sikhi Jeevan[2] commanded utmost reverence.

His words ignited a spark in my soul somewhere
The truth had to be found
My parents had given me wings
It was time to dig the roots in the ground.

Then came 1984

The news about several innocents being killed
In busses and trains of Punjab
Why did I know were setups and propaganda,
To create a context for BlueStar[3].

When you stormed Harimander[4]
Hot month of June it was
Sangat[5] in tens of thousands had come to pay reverence
To the great Guru Arjan Shaheeda-de-Sirtaaj[6].

In pretext to disarm a few dozen men
You brought tanks, rocket launchers, heavy artillery and cannons
You entrapped thousands and cut off their supplies
And used poisonous gas to consume those innocents.

You killed uncountable mothers, fathers and children
After you parched them with thirst,
You filled the sarovar[7] with the blood of thousands
And tried to patch up your acts by mass cremations.

When Lion Bhindrawale[8] was declared found
With hundreds of GurSikhs around
Something had ached my heart
For you it was the beginning of the end; for me it was just a start.

Then came fake encounters[9]
I suspected things were not how they were shown
But just a teenager I was
With no access to the truth or cries
of bereaving mothers in Punjab.

But You know what O cruel Brahmanvaad[10]
The ties of Guru’s Kaum are very strong
Generations away from Guru’s land
But my blood and soul was always a Punjab.

Then 30th of October came
Satwant & Beant[11] had done their share.
You decided to teach 18 million of us another lesson
And issued the orders of Sikh massacre.

Our house was set afire and a few relatives blazed,
Rape, torture and death we had barely escaped.
With days of hiding, uncertainty and gloom ahead
The spirit was still Guru’s; it couldn’t be scared.

When the sad news poured in from all directions,
O India you had opened our eyes to the Sikhi connection.
We were connected, we were made one;
Punjab or outside any place in the world.
That awakening had finally taken place
That feeling was invaluable, that discovery priceless.

As you unveiled your centuries’ long hatred
And unleashed your long held wrath!
It was a blessing in disguise, I’ll tell you
And finally everything had made sense.

It was our identity you loathed
It was our sovereignty and strength that you despised
It was our magnanimity that you thrived on
It was our subjugated loyalty that you desired.

When those fearless souls revealed the truth
And masses pledged to stand up for their nation
You feared losing your strength and position
And planned this brutal retaliation.

The spark had turned into a flame
To be a Sikh was no longer a shame
I knew we were not one of you
And standing up for equality, liberty and justice would never please you.

You finally dug your own grave
Your cover-ups and false promises will bear no fruits
My parents had given me the wings
But Thank You India; You put me in touch with my roots.


June, 2006


I am a parent of a pre teen now
And the flame is a full grown fire
That fire; it also burns in his heart
And that to you is the start of my 1984’s answer.

The fire now burns with full vigor
It will consume me lest I take action
Hence I will not sit quiet
I pledge to turn it into a revolution.

I brought him up telling stories about his heritage
About your betrayal, your intentions and your treacheries
I am not alone; thousands of Mothers there are
That dedicated their lives to this purpose.

I will not let him down; in grounding him to his roots.
Not one day has passed since he was born
That I didn’t tell him a story of Sikh pride
Of Khalsa Nation and its sacrifice.

This is my revenge O India
I will never forget and forgive you
I will raise many such more daughters and sons
They will never let your cruel intentions come true.

They will walk tall; They will be in your face
Proving we survived against all odds
They will not demolish themselves ashamed by your lies
But will stand eternally in Guru’s grace.

We are a strong Nation, We are sovereign
You cannot stop us, The game has just begin.
For you see,
We are the people of our own destiny, of spirit and of freedom
We have wings we roam everywhere,
But,
We also have roots in truth and perfection.
We have roots only in truth and perfection.







[1] Follower of a mystic sect of Islam
[2] Living the life completely in tune with the Guru’s teachings
[3] Name of the 3 day long Army Operation conducted by Indian Govt. Harimander Sahib (AKA Golden Temple) and 37 other Sikh shrines were attacked by modern artillery; thousands of innocents were killed
[4] Temple of the Divine: Commonly known as Golden Temple the most revered Sikh Center of worship established in 16th Century where tens of thousands of devotees worship everyday
[5] Congregation / Worshippers
[6] The fifth Guru of Sikhs – Martyred by Mughal Emperor of India - Jahangir for exercising and propagating freedom of religion and beliefs
[7] The Pool surrounding Harimander Sahib
[8] Sant Jarnail Singh Khalsa (Bhindrawale) – Revered Leaders of the Sikhs who instilled pride in Sikhs and called f or action towards injustice and oppression
[9] Sikh Youth was rounded up and killed all over in Punjab in well disguised and so called terrorist encounters for 10 years post BlueStar. Missing Sikh Youth Estimates exceed 250,000
[10] Philosophy of Supremacy of the ruling Brahman class
[11] Satwant Singh and Beant Singh – Avenged the attack on Harimander Sahib and killing of uncountable innocent Sikhs by killing Indira Gandhi the Prime Minister of India who masterminded the attack.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Brilliant! thank you my sista...
for its works like that are going to lead this revolution.
thank you

Sudip Minhas said...

Dear Gurmeet
Very well done! Just a little advice and some corrections
"Sikhi was just another stream off your Noble Heritage"
and
try using the verbs before subjects like "everyday fighting prejudice" it could be
"fighting prejudice everyday"
that makes the poem more action oriented and thats what it is supposed to be.
Keep it up and make the other cahnges on your own and feel free to contact me at sudips1@yahoo.com

Gurvinderpal said...

wow that sweet, i had no idea you were so strong bhen ji , i really hope you'll be able to make it to baru sahib... we can most def talk

Harpal Singh said...

Thanks
You remembered 1984. Apreciate what you have pened. No one dares to do this except a few. Many thanks for remember the Shaeeds(Martyrs).

Anonymous said...

Amazing. Thank you & I promise you that I am with you & whenever Waheguru gives me a child, he/ she would grow with the same fire.

Waheguru ji ka Khalsa
Waheguru ji ke fateh

regards,

Bhavleen Kaur
Chandigarh, India

Anonymous said...

IT IS SOMETHING WONDERFUL.
The more you read, the more you get inspiration and thrill. I wish every sikh should read it again and again, specially children should be made to understand. I am sorry to say that this Sunday, in our Gurudwara, the day was not celebrated as it should have been. I know ,we have lot of time ,money and energy to spend on cultural functions, but no time to remember our Gurus,their teachings and sacrifices.

Every day I receive a bundle of junk E. mail. Dirt and Mud throwing on each other.I feel ashamed even to read such kind of E. mails.,but they are not ashamed of writing again and again.. I am really very,very happy today that I got something wonderful to read. I appreciate your writing_ Poem. Please continue your writings to inspire our nation_ Sikhs..perhaps we may patchup our differences and work for the Unity and follow the footsteps of our GURUS.


With Regards,

Sohan s. Tucker

Anonymous said...

Gurmeet Kaur Ji;

Great poem, and a great tribute to our beloved Shaheeds.

May Waheguru keep this fire burning forever among us.

Some websites that I found for info. Have a lot of other info. on these issues.

http://www.saintsoldiers.net

http://www.sikhgenocide.org/

http://punjabarchive.org/

Thanks & Regards,

Manny Singh

Mandeep Singh Bajwa said...

Why do you brush away killings by Bhindranwala's men by labelling them 'Staged' ?

What do you mean by 'Beant and Satwant did their share' ?

Kuldip Singh Sevadar said...

Dear Gurmeet Ji,

Simply beautiful, directly touching the core of heart, nerve shattering!

May Waheguru Bless you.

Kulbir Singh Sevadar

Inder Kaur said...

waheguru ji ka khalsa
waheguru ji ki fateh

amazing poem...the fire does burns even though i wasn't around 84..it does burns...truly amazing stay in chardeekala

fatehjioo

Amandeep, New Zealand said...

I thought your poem was so truthful and beautiful.
it hit so many chords in my heart.
thank you

Another khalsa said...

This is great what you wrote i was just in a youth camp it was great but just now when i got back to amritsar i read your poem!!!!!!!!!

chardikala ji bhenji this is great but listen i didn't let my eyes shed any tears after reading your poem.

waheguru waheguru waheguru..... i was there in amritsar and still are.
It wasn't easy to see those great souls leaving there body................waheguru waheguru can't write much.......... sorry.

Waheguru

AnandSingh, Scandinavia, EU said...

This is what we all wish and will get what we want, no matter what.
Every single word of yours is right and well justified.

When these things happen in a democracy then may be we need to re-define it.
May be in the same way

Anonymous said...

a stirring blog... will definitely transform. Thank you for this wonderful read.

-Sudeep Singh

Jaideep Singh said...

Sikhan nu ohna di history naal adan hi jorde rehna ji.

Anonymous said...

I am impressed by what you wrote.... but sincerely, i believe you missed the biggest point of our religion- not to keep animosity in our hearts. Sikhi is all about getting ppl together 'Sangat' and leading them to Waheguru.

I am not well trained in Gurmukhi, Sanskrit or urdu, so cant comment about the teaching of any other or my own religion. But surely, every religion taught us to be a better people - and forgiveness is the trues essence of all.

You are sikh, love the guru, keep him in your heart - and spread his message all over the world, but if its hatred and loath what you keep in your heart, i am sorry to say you missed the point.

You say: "We will be a strong Nation, We will be sovereign ; You cannot stop us, The game has just begin.".What is it that you look for?

Every religion in the world is suffering as they lack to evolve. I loved it when you wrote, that you got in touch to your roots. But it aches to find that you still missed the point – trapped you are like ppl in every other religion.

I love my 10 gurus, they left us a legacy to look upto. Great achivements are led by smaller changes. The beauty of our religion is that came into existence by a young boy inquisitive about GOD. He learned his lesson, went on his own path and laid the foundation of a great religion for us.

But dont let him down. He took a path to connect the whole world to the Waheguru. He said 'Ek Owankar' - meaning one GOD - so why different nations for his own children.

I can keep on going on writing, but this is a path you need to discover yourself- I am no lecturer and dont say i know a lot - but please dont say that you want a separate nation.

You let down my Waheguru. He has made us strong, so lets not take the easy path. Lets take the right path- u have hatred in yourself - end it and end it in those who have it for you.

What is it that you want to leave to your kids – hatred , agony or the love for the Waheguru.

Its easy to leave someone, if they are wrong;
But the challenge is in loving them and then help them to improve the way of life.

Why need a separate nation, help your nation – my India , your India - lets help our country. Lets live the way of our gurus.

Keep the fire in your heart, fire of love for the ‘Waheguru’. And if your heart is filled his love, you wont find the space for hatred or loath for anyone. If someone is wrong, change the way they look at it, enlighten them – embrace them – teach them - thats the way of Sikhi.

My heart still aches to hear from my ‘Wahegurus’ children all the hatred that still resides in their hearts. Fill your heart with his love and then you will fill everyone’s heart with his.

At last, I would apologize if I might have gone wrong somewhere, but these are my own views. Just couldn’t bear that anger in your heart, don’t keep space for that. I would pray that my ‘Wahegurus’ love fills your heart and heals your memories.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous in the comment above,

I call it wisdom what you call hatred. How many blows does one take, how may stabs in the back do we take until we realise that they are are trying to kill us, the Sikh?

Take the example of Jewish community, how they emerged despite the repeated attempts to finish every single one of them. Could it be done in another way, other than claiming their own nation? Could they establish their identity while living in USA or some European nation, and not in Israel?

The right path is not necessarily the easiest one. If Sikh have to establish their identity, it will be only by means of their own nation. One weak moment during partition shall not dictate the fate of Sikhism. Whats been done wrong shall change, and what you witness here, now, is that process of change.

Who were Nehru or Gandhi to decide which is the nation for Sikh? Its the Sikh who will decide, and they will claim what is theirs. We Sikh are a nation.

Not long ago a state government in India successfully declared Jainism and Buddhism a part of Hindu religion. There were voices to do the same with Sikhs but due to fear of strong backlash they did not dare to do so. The weak ones were assimilated. Do you realise the threat? One moment we fall weak, and we will lose it all. India is not safe for us and only a blind would ask for evidence of the same. If we are to save our identity then Khalistan is a must.

Its not even a matter of debate whether or not we have the right to our independence, but yes, the means to acquire independence can be debated.

In this world the might is right, its not enough to have a just cause. Let us never give them another chance. Let each individual Sikh be strong and prepared. Let us stick together, and with this strength and conviction, let us claim what is ours.

Face the truth, I know its diffcult but then who promised that Sikhi would be easy? I need not say more. By the way Jewish struggle is a good example and I suggest reading more about their struggle and learning from it.

As the old saying goes- Forgive but do not forget.

Bole so nihal- Sat Sri Akaal.

-Amrut Singh

Anonymous said...

The day u discard logical reasoning over decade old anger.

Ignorant thou are,
Ignorant thy shall remain.

Go read first, only then preach. Ask a Jew is this the Israel he wants? Ask him is this really what the lord preached?

Be a Man of Honour, be a Man of Courage, be a "Khalsa", then the whole world will follow you.

I dont think then you would need a separate nation, as the whole world would be yours.

Gurmeet Kaur said...

Dear Anonymous,
A nation does not mean a separate country really. We already are a nation bound by the love and loyalty to our Gurus. The Sovereignty is in the realization of that fact and declaring ourselves free of any subjugation.

And belive me, there is no hatred towards any people in the heart.

Gurmeet Kaur

harjeet said...

Dear Anonymous,

Even gurbani says:-

" Raj bina na dharam challe hai,
Dharam bina sab jalle malle hai"

Means:- Without religon, you have nothing & to have religon you need to rule.

WGJKK--WGJKF

charan said...

Dear Gurmeet Kaurji

After a very long time a post has brought me to tears.

It was not only the intensity of your feeling but the thought, that someone has experienced the same sentiments as me.

I dont care what other feeble hearted people have to comment on this beautiful work of yours.

But i could see the spirit of Guru Gobind Singh at its most evident-Partakh Roop Vich.

Moreover some of the historical precedents like maligning sikhs in India by Brahmins through Textbooks was so beautifully put up.

I bet if Sikh Quam has mothers like u , we will have a different generation altogether.
Guru Rakha

Charanjit Singh
Mumbai

Harpreet said...

I appreciate and applaud your courage and stand, of being loyal to your creaters and masters, and being true to yourself and your identity. I believe and I say it to you, the real and true character, there'll be exaltation of the sikh community.

Anonymous said...

Gurmeet Kaur Ji,
After slavery for milleniums we have bagged this piece of India out of vast Indian subcontinent.We had no option but to accept the reality. Religious fanatics found their way to the places of their choice.We mmade India a democratic,secular and respectable nation amomng nations.Positive thinking people of all the faiths contributed in doing so and making it happen.
There is no place for religious fanatics in modern Indian society.There is no place or repect for anyone/s who speak the language of bullet. Nation have highly professional secular security and defence forces to deal with them. What is happening in Gaza for past one week ? Terrorists are hiding inside religious places under the cover of civillians. Army has no option but to bombard them !!!!! Who is responsible ? Answer is TERRORISTS. Forces are doing their duty.

jinder said...

Narinder singh, I have proud on you my dear,dear sister you have this kind voice in your hurt. This voice should need to come out from every sikh hurt.Real sikhs are knows uncountable sihs are killd by indian govt from 1978 to still gong on under name of attvadi(terrorist)They was not attvadi they are MARTYRS of sikh koam.WHAHEGURU TUHANU CHARDE KALA BAKHSA. WAHEGURU JI KA KHALSA. WAHEGURU JI KI FATEH