COVID Testing – IMPORTANT

We have been informed by a member of the Sangat who attended the Gurdwara on Sunday 18th July that they have tested positive for COVID19 a day later.

We would encourage any members of the Sangat who visited the Gurdwara on Sunday 18th July to complete a test as soon as possible. We thank you for your support with this.

Restarting Langar

As of 4th July, Langar will be restarted. In line with the latest government guidelines and recommendations from the local authorities, there will be changes to the layout of the Gurdwara with some of the implemented measures during the Pandemic now removed.

The Sangat can use the main stairs to go upstairs and back downstairs. When using the stairs, please keep to the left when going up and keep to the right when coming back down the stairs.

Langar will be restarted and the layout of the langar hall has been changed to maintain social distancing wherever possible.

Please note, wearing masks is still mandatory and whilst some of the measures have been removed we would still recommend maintaining social distancing where ever possible. We would also encourage to limit close contact where ever possible.

Further updates will be shared as and when updates are available.

Remembering 1984

This week marks the 37th anniversary of Operation Bluestar. An operation led by the Indian army which resulted an attack on the Sri Harmandir Sahib (Golden Temple) in Amritsar.

Operation Blue Star was the codename for the attack on the Akal Takhat and the Golden Temple complex during the period June 1 to 6, 1984. The Indian army invaded the Harmandir Sahib complex on the orders of the then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi. At the time of the operation, close to 100,000 army troops had been deployed throughout Punjab. A group of Sikhs, led by Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale (the charismatic leader of the Damdami Taksal) had, after being expelled from one of the Niwas (guest houses) moved into the Akal Takhat.

Image of the Akal Takhat after the attack.

Besides the historic weapons carried by Sikhs, the kirpans and khandas, the group which had fortified the historic Takhat, with rifles, assault weapons & grenades, numbered no more than 250. The Golden Temple, the surrounding Bungas and guest houses and Langar were filled with 2,000 or more pilgrims, guests and employees of the complex. Many had come to visit the Temple on the day associated with the Martyrdom of Guru Arjan.

On 1 June 1984, after negotiations failed, Indira Gandhi rejected the Anandpur Resolution and ordered the army to launch Operation Blue Star, simultaneously attacking scores of Sikh temples across Punjab. On 1 June Indian security forces commenced Operation Blue Star when they fired into various buildings with the goal of assessing the training of the militants, which resulted in the deaths of 8 civilians.

A variety of army units and paramilitary forces surrounded the Golden Temple complex on 3 June 1984. The official stance of the army was that warnings were made to facilitate the evacuation of pilgrims but that no surrender or release occurred by June 5 at 7:00 PM. However, in April 2017 the Amritsar District and Sessions Judge Gurbir Singh gave a ruling which stated that there was no evidence that the Indian army provided warnings for pilgrims to leave the temple complex before commencing their assault. The army’s assault on the temple complex ended on June 8.

Whilst the official figures of reported deaths was 5000, the true number which is led to be many thousands more have never been confirmed or revealed.

Tyres represent the thousands who had them forcefully placed over their heads by the mobs and burnt alive. Tanks represent the storming of the holiest of places for Sikhs. Bullets represent the countless killings, attacks and rape that pierced the heart of many then and now. The Black and white to symbolise the hair and darkness of the act by the then, Prime Minister of India. The Ninth Guru who sacrificed his physical being to save a religion. Bhagat Singh, who was hung fighting hard for the independence of India to unite all in the nation. And lastly, a sea of flowers of all those who died from such a tragedy.
Image from @Inkquisitive

Detailed information about Operation Bluestar can be found here – https://www.sikhiwiki.org/index.php/Operation_Blue_Star

Parkash of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji

TODAY is the parkash Diharra of Dhan Dhan Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Sahib Ji Maharaj. This year marks 400 years we would like to congratulate the whole Sadh Sangat on this very special occasion.

ਸਤਗੁਰ ਕਿਰਪਾ ਨਿਧਾਨ ਸਿਧ ਰੂਪ ਧਰ ਗਤ ਅਮਿਤ । Satguru Tegh Bahadur Sahib Ji is the ocean of mercy, the form of might and whose elegance is beyond measure.

ਕੋ ਮਹਿਮਾ ਕਰੈ ਬਖਾਨ ਜਗ ਤਾਰਨ ਕਾਰਨ ਰਚਿਓ ।੧। What praise can I ever utter as He is the liberator of this world and also the genesis. (Mehma Perkash: Sakhia Patshahi 9 – Sakhi 1)

Credit – Instagram @SikhYouthUK

Happy Vaisakhi

The idea of formation of Khalsa came from Guru Nanak Dev Ji years before it was executed. The form and the color too has been mentioned in his bani.

Rataa paiman man rataa supedhee sat dhaan ||
My mind is imbued with the lord’s love; it is dyed a deep crimson, Truth and charity are my white clothes.

Neelee siaahee kadhai karanee pahiran pair dhiaan ||

Erasing the blackness of my sin is my wearing of blue clothes, and meditation on the lord’s Lotus Feet is my robe of honor.

Kamarbandh Santokh kaa dhan joban tera naam ||

Contentment is my cummerbund, your name is my wealth and youth.

Baabaa hot painan khusee khuaar ||

O Baba, the pleasure of other clothes are false….

P.S: Taking Amrit is the initiation not the destination.

Credit – Instagram @SaffronStudios

Further information about Vaisakhi can be found under the Sikhi section of our website.

Vaisakhi/Nishan Sahib Seva

After discussing with the topic with local authorities, we have been granted permission to proceed with Nishan Sahib Seva on Sunday 18th April at 10AM. This decision has been made based on the grounds that the high levels of cleanliness and social distancing measures are maintained.

To reduce the risk of transmission, extra measures will be put into place and we kindly request that the Sangat adhere to instructions that may be provided by committee members and sevadaars throughout the day.

Additionally, we would like to remind the Sangat that social distancing measures will remain in place and we kindly urge the Sangat to continue to follow these measures.

Please do not take any instructions negatively, the instructions are being issued with the safety of the Sangat being the highest priority. If you are planning on visiting the Gurdwara or have not done so since re-opening then please ensure you check the COVID-19 section of the website for information about the measures we currently have in place.

Restarting Paath/Kirtan Update

As of Sunday 4th April, we are pleased to update the Sangat that diwaans will resume. There will be a Sukhmani Sahib Paath followed by Kirtan. We request that for any sangat attending that they continue to follow the guidlines outlined below –

  • Face mask are worn as mandatory as per Government guidlines
  • Please ensure you wash/santise your hands upon entry of the Gurdwara
  • If you are showing any symptoms of COVID19, please do not enter the Gurdwara
  • Please ensure social distancing measures are followed wherever possible.

In line with the risk assessment carried out, we can only allow up to 30 people within the Gurdwara at any given time. If you wish to sit upstairs please do so for 5-10 minutes. A Sevadaar might approach you should the number of people in the building be close to the limit. Please do not take this negatively. This is just to ensure the number of people in the building at any given time is controlled.

If you require further information then please check the COVID 19 section the website.

Re-Opening Date

We are pleased to inform the Sangat that the Gurdwara will be re-opening on Sunday 14th March. Whislt the infection rate has decreased across the country we have seen an increase within the Swindon area of the last week.

As such, measures will be put into place to ensure the risk of transmission is kept to a minimum as possible. Gurdwara will only be open for individual prayer, as such there will be no Paath/Diwaan and currently sitting down in the Darbar hall will not be permitted.

Opening times will be limited to 10am to 2pm.

We would kindly request to the Sangat who will be attending to –
• Wear face covering (can be supplied at the Gurdwara if you don’t have one)
• Sanitise hands upon entry (also supplied)
• Follow the one way system through out the Gurdwara
• Maintain social distancing wherever possible and avoid gathering in groups.

Please ensure you check the COVID-19 section of the site if you require further information.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji Gurpurab

Happy Gurpurab, the Auspicious birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh Ji. 🙏🏽⠀

“For this purpose was I born, let all virtuous people understand. I was born to advance righteousness, to emancipate the good, and to destroy all evil-doers root and branch.” ⠀⠀⠀
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~ Guru Gobind Singh Ji⠀

Credit – Instagram – @Sikhexpo