Hinduization of Sikh Faith & History
Based on “Tabai Roas Jagio” by Dr. Sukhpreet Singh Udokay

The recent announcement by the VHP of putting portraits of Guru Gobind Singh Ji and Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji in Hindu Mandirs has shocked Sikhs worldwide. The fact is that attacks on the Sikh faith and history have been ongoing for years in order to show Sikhs to be a part of Hinduism.

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) was created over 75 years ago to spread Hindu culture. The group is organised through Shakhas or camps where members meet and train. In their daily prayers the RSS sing before the Bhagava Dhwaj (Saffron flag), which is regarded as the supreme Guru. The slogan of the RSS is ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ – Long live mother India. The mission of RSS is to unite and rejuvenate the ‘Bharat’ nation on the sound foundation of Hindu Dharma. The RSS is striving for a strong and united Hindu society and the vision of Hindutva. It’s definition of ‘Hindu’ is anyone born and belonging to India. This includes Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains. The RSS is opposed to anyone who tampers with India’s unity and integrity, it has 30,000 branches in India and 35 abroad. 

 

 
The Rashtriya Sikh Sangat group, which is a branch of the main Rashrtiya Swayamsevak Sangh and also known as RSS was formed in Punjab in 1986 claiming to promote Sikh-Hindu relations. It’s main aim however is to attack and swallow the Sikh religion, and how is it trying to do this ? Over the last two years, the RSS has intensified its attention on Sikh affairs in Punjab. At every given opportunity, it has tried to build inroads into Sikh institutions and attacked the basic Sikh philosophy and way of life. By any means possible it is trying to undermine the history, the beliefs and institutions of the faith.
  A disgusting depiction of the Gurus by the RSS

The attempt to subjugate the Sikh identity by the dominant and elite Hindu stream is nothing new. In the earlier part of the nineteenth century, Swami Dayanand Saraswati of Arya Samaj came down heavily against Sikh Gurus, Sikh scriptures and the Punjabi language, in response to which Bhai Kahan Singh wrote the famous book, 'Hum Hindu Nahin' – We are not Hindus. The current threat to the Sikh identity assumed serious proportions when the RSS chief, K. Sudarshan, while participating in the Rashtriya Sikh Sangat Convention in Amritsar (April 2000) said that Sikhism is a sect of Hinduism while the Khalsa is a part of mainstream Hinduism which was created to protect Hinduism from Mughal tyranny. From that time on, many Sikh organizations undertook protest marches against Sudarshan and pointed out that Sikhism is a religion in its own right and that they will not tolerate the RSS efforts to undermine their separate Sikh identity.

The spokesperson of Dal Khalsa went on to say that, the RSS was trying to impose a centralized monolithic society in India and that they would oppose this hegemonic agenda. Meanwhile, many other Sikh organizations pointed out that the RSS was interfering in the religious, cultural, social and political matters of Sikhs – an act which should be condemned and opposed. In the Lok Sabha, one MP alleged that the RSS was distributing anti-Sikh literature through the Sangat. It was responsible for disturbing the religious harmony in Punjab. This MP also criticized the Ministry of Human Resource Development for giving Rs. 17 crore to the RSS for propaganda work.

The Rashtriya Sikh Sangat has been formed as a branch of theRSS and as a new member of Sangh Parivar. In addition to others, it is being spearheaded by one Shri B.L. Sharma 'Prem' -- a BJP/VHP old hand. Since then, he has got himself baptized to Sikhism and is now acting as the Trojan Horse of RSS in the Sikh community.

The establishment of the kingdom around the Sikh Gurus led to the cycle of conflict with neighbouring Hindu rulers and the Delhi-based Mughal Empire and took its extreme form with the tenth guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Guru Gobind Singh Ji stood firm while Aurangzeb was brutally suppressing all the rebellions against the Mughal Empire. Guru Sahib Ji’s immediate tussle was with the Raja of Bilaspur who eyed Guru Ji’s popularity and influence with great concern. This led to the battle in which Guru Sahib Ji was victorious over the Raja of Bilaspur. The victory brought in the hostility of many of the rajas of the hill states towards Guru Gobind Singh Ji.

In due course Emperor Aurangzeb, along with the Hindu rajas, drove Guru Sahib Ji away from Anandpur Sahib and in the battle, his sahibzaday (children) were caught, tortured and put to death. Later there was an attempt at rapprochement from Aurangzeb's side after he received the Epistle of Victory (Zafarnama) from Guru Ji, and he invited Guru Gobind Singh Ji to meet him in the Deccan. As Guru Ji was on his way to meet him, Aurangzeb died, but the process of reconciliation with the Mughal sultanate continued and in due course Aurangzeb's son Bahadur Shah, thankful for Guru Ji’s assistance in his battle for succession became friendly. Now, the distorted interpretation of these historical fact forms the base of 'select historiography', whereby the clash between Guru Sahib Ji and the Mughal sultanate is projected to the forefront and the conflict between the Hindu rajas and Sikhs is suppressed or glossed over.

The current opportunism of the Sikh political party, The Akali Dal, in allying with the RSS and the BJP is making it blind to the real project of the RSS. The severe setback to the Sikh community due the 1984 anti-Sikh pogrom is projected to show the devil in Congress alone. The real role of the RSS in backing up the Indira-Rajiv onslaught on the Sikhs is deliberately underplayed. It is interesting to note that one of the significant articles by a top RSS ideologue, Nanaji Deshmukh, which subtly supports Rajiv's turning the other way, in the face of the post-Indira-assassination-anti-Sikh pogroms, is hardly known. Mr. Deshmukh in a document circulated to the top echelons of political leadership in the wake of the '84 pogroms presents them as the genuine feeling of anger of Hindus against the Sikhs. He presents the whole thing as though the whole Sikh community was supporting the act of the two guards of Mrs. Gandhi and that because of the assassination, they should quietly bear this attack on the innocent Sikhs.

In the same article he blesses the Rajiv regime while blaming the Sikh intellectuals for alienating the Sikhs from the Hindu community (Moments of Soul Searching by Nanaji Deshmukh, translated and published in the Hindi journal, Pratipaksh, Nov. 25, 1984). Incidentally this weekly journal at the time was published by none other than the erstwhile secular-socialist, George Fernandes, who is currently enjoying the warmth of BJP's lap. A leopard can change its spots, but RSS cannot overcome its politics of Hindu rashtra in pursuance of which it wants to subjugate other religious streams, which have emerged in the subcontinent

How did this begin?
 
Brahminism has always feared the Sikh faith. The Sikh Gurus proclaimed the equality of all humanity and rejected practices like caste, holy threads and worship of the cow. The exploitation of simple people by the Brahmin was eliminated. Although Hindu fundamentalists have taken a keen interest in destroying Sikhism for centuries, this latest cycle of Hindu attacks on Sikhism can be traced to 1993. The Sikh Liberation Movement had been brutally crushed in Punjab and was on its final breaths. Sikh villagers were afraid of being identified as being practicing Sikhs and roves of young Sikh men were cutting their hair so that they would not be harassed or killed by the police.

It was at this point that a new “Sikh” organization, the Rashtri Sikh Sangat (RSS) began to enter Sikh villages. This organization began to distribute literature about the Sikh faith and hold meetings. Many villagers thought that it was an attempt to revive Sikh pride, but in fact, the literature was written to show Sikhs to be a part of Hinduism.

The “Akali” party of Punjab, while claiming to represent Sikhs, is lead by the same old men who allowed the 1978 Amritsar massacre and the martyrdom of Bhai Fauja Singh and 12 other fellow Singhs. They are the same ones who let Gurbachana Narakdhari go unpunished.

The linking of the Guru's with the Hindu Om.  

The Akali party, in an alliance with the Hindu BJP began to rule Punjab. The RSS activity in Punjab also increased. Sangh programs were held in places like Guru Nanak Dev Stadium (Ludhiana) with the presence of Parkash Badal and other Akali/BJP leaders. On November 16, 1997, Badal while introducing the new RSS chief sad, “I can say with confidence that the Sangh, under the leadership of Raju Bhaiya is working towards removing all its shortcomings. Whenever this country has faced either internal or external danger, the Sangh and it’s workers have been on the front lines.
Today, I am feeling very lucky to be a part of this gathering.”

Raju Bhaiya in his speech that day, in the presence of Badal, declared, “All Hindus are Sikhs and Sikhs Hindus. We are all one. Some grow hair and some don’t. I say that All Hindus are Sikhs and all Sikh are Hindus. Our principles are the same. With the help of unity, we become very powerful…People are right when they say that Hindus have the power to make Hindustan a leader in the world!”

 

  Badal and RSS leaders

  An RSS poster for the Punjab

 

 
Under the watchful guidance of this unholy alliance, the RSS increased its parchar amongst the Sikhs. It was a perfect time to move in for the kill. The Sikhs had been beaten very badly by the Indian government and their confidence had been shaken. The RSS would give the Sikhs sweet poison. They shouted loudly that the RSS and all Hindus LOVED Sikhs. They would preach that Sikhs were after all no different than Hindus. The Sikh Gurus were true Hindus and Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu blessed the Sikh faith. The Sikhs, they claimed, should feel proud as the sword-arm of Hinduism.

In this way, the RSS has tried to make the Sikh masses try to take pride in establishing a link between Sikhism and Hinduism. Once this link becomes solid, the RSS has already devised a plan to decay the foundations of the Sikh faith and history

 

Who is the Rashtriya Sikh Sangat?

The Rashtriya Sikh Sangat (RSS) was officially formed on November 23, 1986 in Amritsar. The founder was one “Shamsher Sinh”

The express goals of the RSS are

1) To strengthen the bonds between Sikhs and Hindus to promote National unity, awareness and patriotism.
2) To make Guru Nanak’s “Hindustan Smaalsee Bola” a reality and maintain national patriotism and unity.
3) To promote Sri Guru Bani fro Sri Guru Granth Sahib
4) To perform seva with “Sarbat Da Bhala” in mind.

The Rashtriya Sikh Sangat has 500 branches across India and publishes the magazine “Sangat Sandesh”.

Other goals of this organization are the creation of a Mandar at Ayodhya’s “Ram Janam Bhoomi” and also a Gurdwara to commemorate visits by Guru Nanak, Guru Tegh Bahadur and Guru Gobind Singh.

 
  Guru Nanak Dev Ji shown as an 'Indian' hero.

 

Every month, the Rashtriya Sikh Sangat has a function in which occasionally Sri Guru Granth Sahib is parkash and sometimes not. Usually the function takes place with paintings of Guru Nanak, Guru Tegh Bahadur and Guru Gobind Singh at the front. These paintings are accompanied by paintings of Ram and Krishna. The paintings are garlanded with flowers.

The meeting begins with 5 readings of the Mool Mantar and then 20 minutes of keertan. After this, Sukhmani Sahib or Ram Avtar or Krishan Avtar are read. This is followed by a singing of “Vanday Matram”.

The meeting concludes with a 20 minute lecture on the history the original RSS founder Golvarkar and discussion of the role of Sanskrit in Sri Guru Granth Sahib or some other similar topic.

 

Ganesh superimposed on a Gurnwara

 

 
Some Quotes…

* “Instead of sacrificing humans, Guru ji sacrificed goats and started the tradition of Punj Pyaaray. All five Pyaaras were followers of the Hindu faith” {Dr. Himmat Sinh in Rashtra Dharam)

* “The Sikh Gurus showed faith in the Hindu faith and visited Hindu pilgrimage sites to show this” (Rashtra Dharam, p. 31)

* “When Guru Arjan was doing the Kar Seva of Harimandeir, Vishnu reflected and said, “Lakshmi, the Guru is my own form. There is no difference between us. He is making my temple. Let us go and see the building of our new temple…” (Rashtra Dharam, 90)

* “The difference between Hindus and Sikhs was the creation of the English mind.” (Rashtra Dharam, 98)

* “If today someone were to make a portrait of Guru Nanak without a beard and turban, his life would be in danger but in fact, the practice of keeping long hair and beards began only in the 20th Century. (Madhu Kishvara, Hindustan Times Aug 21, 1999)

* “Guru Arjan Dev and Guru Tegh Bahadur used to pay obeisance to the feet of the Devi” (Surindar Kumar, Jag Bani)

* “Guru Gobind Singh with the blessings of the Avtars (Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva) created the Khalsa Panth.” (Sangat Sandesh, Sept 1998)

* “Maharana Partap, the Rani of Jhansi and Guru Gobind Singh were all great patriots” (Rashtra Dharam)

* “The Sangh [RSS] is the Khalsa” (Ravani, Dec 1997)

 
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