Amritsar, Punjab: At a time when the VIP culture in India is under threat from the ideology of the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi, Harmandar Sahib, Sikhism’s premier shrine here, has been showing the way of treating everyone, including VIPs and celebrities, alike. Even being the Chief Minister of Punjab does not help here.
Five-time Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal (86) will have to wait for a few years to get his turn to get an ‘akhand path’, a Sikh prayer service of the Guru Granth Sahib, conducted at the Dukhbhanjani Sahib inside the Golden Temple complex. Badal’s name is among over 1.3 lakh people who figure in the list of those wanting the 48-hour long ceremony conducted.
All VIPs and celebrities have to queue up along with thousands of commoners to get a religious ceremony conducted at Harmandar Sahib — popularly known as the Golden Temple and considered the holiest of Sikh shrines.
Such is the rush of people for the religious ceremony that the shrine management has bookings full till 2019. The ceremony is conducted by Sikh priests (granthis) at two places —Dukhbhanjani Sahib and Har-ki-Pauri.
All applicants have to specify where they want the ceremony to be conducted.
The Dukhbhanjani Beri (tree) is believed to be even older than the shrine. “The ‘akhand path’ ceremony is held at various places inside the Golden Temple. At some places, we have bookings till 2019. Scores of people keep coming for more bookings,” Partap Singh, manager of the Golden Temple complex, said. “No one is a VIP here. Everyone has to wait for his turn for the ceremony,” he said.
“It is a good thing that the shrine does not entertain VIPs and celebrities separately. Before God, everyone should be equal. Some shrines in other parts of India allow VIP darshan. That is not good,” Jagmohan Singh, a volunteer at the shrine said.
No to VIP culture:
- There are 1.3 lakh people in a list of those wanting an ‘akhand path’ conducted at Dukhbhanjani Sahib ( in Golden Temple complex)
- Such is the rush for the ceremony that the management has bookings full till 2019
- The 48-hour ceremony is conducted by Sikh priests at two places: Dukhbhanjani Sahib and Har-ki-Pauri
Source: The Tribune