Sikh bodies oppose SGPC’s decision of printing ‘saroop’ of Guru Granth Sahib abroad

Amritsar: Various Sikh bodies have raised objections on Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee’s (SGPC) decision to print ‘saroop’ of Sri Guru Granth Sahib (SGGS) in foreign countries which aims at the easy access of the holy book to Sikhs living there and avoid violation of ‘maryada’ (Sikh code of religious conduct) during the transportation of SGGS.

President of Sikh Youth Federation (Bhinderanwala) Ranjit Singh Damdami Taksal has met the SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur to apprise her of the ‘real situation’ behind the demand of SGGS by Sikhs living abroad and also handed over her a letter written by as many as 20 Gurdwara management committees of Canada who have also sought to consult them and other gurdwara management bodies across the globe before implementing the decision of setting up of printing presses abroad to print the saroop of SGGS.

“There is not an iota of truth that saroop of SGGS are in huge demand by Sikhs living abroad, instead, many Sikh families have returned the saroop to the Gurdwara’s owing to personal reasons, “ said Ranjit Singh while talking to media on Wednesday.

However, Balbir Singh Muchhal, president of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Satkar Committee opined, “There is no doubt that after the printing of SGGS abroad the issue of violation of maryada during their transportation will be resolved but the SGPC alone shouldn’t manage those printing presses but the responsibility should be shared by a group of Sikh bodies to keep a check on the violation of maryada.”

Balbir Singh also suggested documenting all the saroop of SGGS in every city abroad. “Sikh religious bodies should know the number of saroop in every city abroad so as to avoid any sacrilege incident,” he suggested.

Notably, the executive committee of SGPC in the recent past had resolved to set up printing presses abroad to print the saroop of SGGS.

The SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur had justified the decision on the basis that there was much demand for the holy scripture by Sikh families living abroad.

“This is where we want to correct the SGPC and want it to consult Gurdwara management committees abroad so it could know the real picture,” said Amarjit Singh Maan, spokesperson of Canada’s Ontario Gurdwaras Committee.

Claiming that there was a sufficient number of saroop of SGGS with the Gurdwara’s abroad, he said in all these years not even a single Sikh family has approached them demanding saroop of SGGS. “Instead a few Sikh families have returned the holy book to the gurdwara’s owing to their personal reasons,” he claimed.

Echoing with Amarjit Singh, spokesperson of British Columbia Gurdwara Council Moninder Singh said that SGPC should first consult with the gurdwara management committees abroad to know the real situation about the demand of SGGS, and only then it should go ahead with its decision of printing SGGS abroad.