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Vol 49 (No 4, December 2013) PP 16301/03/2012

50th ANNIVERSARY

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN 2013 PORT DICKSON


SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA

Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji, Malacca (1902 - 1972) First Patron of Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia and main initiator of the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan.

Saint Scholar Naranjan Singh Ji, Patiala, Shiromani Kathakar (1925 - 1994) Second Patron of Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia


The Sikh, Dec 2013

CONTENTS

Jathedar Message

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A Brief History

3-4

Sabha Past Jathedars

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Sabha Founding Father

9-10

The Orgins of the Sikh Naujawan Sabha, Malaysia

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My Memories of the 1st Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan

Contents Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Seremban - 1991

55-56

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Rawang - 1992

57-58

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Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Kampar - 1993

59-60

The first Jathedar of SNSM

12-13

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Johor Bahru - 1994

61-62

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan

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63-64

The Amazing Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia

15-18

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Tampin - 1995

Photos Of Late Samelan 1960s

18-20

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Petaling Jaya - 1996

65-66

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Port Dickson - 1970

21

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 1997

67-68

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Kg. Pandan, Kuala Lumpur - 1971

22-23

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Malacca - 1998

69-70

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Petaling Jaya - 1977

24-26

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Ipoh - 1999

71

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Ipoh - 1978

27-28

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Penang - 2000

72 / 77-81

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang 1979

29-30

Life from Samelan 2013 - Port Dickson

73-76

Annual Parchaar Samelan - Bentong - 1980

31- 34

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Johor Bahru - 2001

82-83

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Ipoh - 1981

35-36

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Seremban - 2002

84-85

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Johor Bahru - 1982

37-38

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 2003

86-94

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Prai - 1983

39-40

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Johor Bahru - 2004

95-99

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Seremban - 1984

41-42

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 2005

100-103

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Batu Pahat - 1985

43-44

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Port Dickson 2006

104-109

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 1986

45-46

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 2007

110-117

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Ipoh - 1987

47-48

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Rembau - 2008

118-123

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 1988

49-50

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Bentong - 2009

124-131

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Batu Pahat - 1989

51-52

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Rembau - 2010

132-136

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Kampar - 1990

53-54

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Klang - 2011

137-139

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan - Ipoh - 2012

140-147

Editorial Team: Malkith Singh, Amanjeet Singh, Harjit Singh, Serena Kaur, B.K. Sidhu, Sharan Kaur Design & Printed by: RL Printer Sdn Bhd | KDN 1780/3564 | 603-2274 5128 | rlprintersdnbhd@gmail.com

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PERSONALLY FROM THE JATHEDAR

Personally from the

The Sikh, Dec 2013

Jathedar

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh || It is Samelan time again, Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia’s signature event! In addition, it’s the 50th Anniversary of the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan. We are back in Port Dickson where it all started 50 years ago and it has been an incredible journey all along. This incredible journey is now part of the Malaysian Sikhs’ psyche and our Samelan has travelled the length and breadth of West Malaysia. In response to the dire need to inculcate gurmat in our children, the Samelan was mooted, the brainchild of Sant Baba Sohan Singh and concerned Sikhs at that time. It started with 32 participants and now the numbers run beyond 1500. The main spinoffs of the Samelan are your Sabha and mini-samelans. In response to the times and innovations, the Samelan evolved but the focus has always remained gurmat parchaar. Each and every activity has a link to gurmat parchaar. The various activities in our Samelans include Nitnem, Simran, Inspirational Sessions with Kirtan and Katha, Social Dynamics, Team Building and Survival Skills, Sports, Learning Modules, Leadership Skills, Sewa, etc. This magazine seeks to recreate and present this 50-years journey with pictures and Samelan articles. We sourced for these historical pictures from the past participants and we were over whelmed by the support. We have pictures for most of these years. A big thank you to the contributors. We are also fortunate that at least 10 of the original 32 participants will join us here. They blazed the trail of this incredible journey and it is only appropriate that we meet these august personalities and thank them. In addition, all the past living Jathedars will also be around to share their experiences. They have each been a catalyst to the Samelans and have introduced tranformations during their terms. A big thank you to them. On behalf of the Sikh community in Malaysia we sincerely thank you. A big thank you also to all the sewadars who have put in umpteen hours during the planning stages and now are busy facilitating all the activities. The bigger reward will be the fruits (mewa) of this sewa, the successful delivery of guruji’s message. Have a great Samelan and come back every year.

Pavandeep Singh Jathedar


The Sikh, Dec 2013

A BRIEF HISTORY

A BRIEF HISTORY OF ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia (SNSM) is a youth organization looked up to by the Sikh community around the world as a model to be emulated. Sikh youth from many countries attend our programmes and take back good practices and programmes to implement in their own countries. Staring from humble beginnings back in 1963, the Sabha has attained its current position through sheer hard work and dedication of its numerous sewadars, with the grace of Waheguru and the constant support and blessings of the Sanggat. In answering the need of the next generation, who find the existing format of parchaar in Gurdwaras less appealing, what is required is a national organization that can cater for the parchaar and social needs of the younger generation. In late 1963, Master Gurbachan Singh from Port Dickson went to

Malacca to meet Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji to discuss the future of the Sikh youth. A few other concerned individuals met in Sdr. Tara Singh’s house. These discussions led to the 1st Gurmat Parchaar Samelan at Gurdwara Sahib Port Dickson in December 1963. The success of this all boys Samelan led to the eventual formation of the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia in 1964.

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan 1963

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The Sikh, Dec 2013

A BRIEF HISTORY

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan 1971

Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji was appointed the first Patron and Master Gurbachan Singh was elected the first Jathedar of the Sabha. Many dedicated individuals joined the Sabha e.g. Master Manjit Singh, Master Karaminder Singh, Master Joginder Singh Rumi, Sdr. Sarjit Singh Bassian, Master Bhagwan Singh, Baba Isher Singh and many others. As mentioned above, the First Gurmat Parchaar Samelan was held in Port Dickson in 1963 with 22 participants (all boys) and another in 1964 at the same venue. Many young girls had shown a keen interest to participate in these Samelans. Master Gurbachan Singh went to Malacca to seek Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji’s advice about its implications. After listening to the matter at hand, Baba Ji replied, “When a Sikh boy obtains knowledge on Sikhism, it usually benefits only him. However, when a Sikh girl acquires knowledge on Sikhism, her entire family may benefit, even more so when she gets married and has her own family. In Sikhism, both men and women are given equal status. An enlightened lady in education

and religion will foster good family values as well as unity and harmony at home. Master Gurbachan Singh thanked Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji for his most valuable advice and returned to Port Dickson to finalise the details of the joint Samelan for boys and girls. So in 1967 girls were included in Samelans. For the next 5 years the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelans were held in Port Dickson. In 1970 the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan grew bigger with 250 participants, both boys and girls, and moved to Wadda Gurdwara Kampung Pandan, Kuala Lumpur. By late 1970’s, the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelans moved into schools as the growing need of space could not be met by our Gurdwaras. Most of the Samelans are held along the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia as the Sikh population is bigger here. One of the obvious “exports” of the Sabha to the world, at least to Sikhs in this region, is the Sabha’s Samelan technology. The Sabha organizes Samelans with participants ranging from 100 to 1,200 in number. The ‘technology’, or the Samelan

know-how, has been deployed at Samelans in various countries around the globe, including Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, the UK, Canada, Italy, France, Switzerland, Sweden, India and Australia. Over the years, the band of volunteers have made changes to keep improving the Samelans. As ever, it is work in progress. While every Samelan has something new, major changes are made in the Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan to reflect with time. The results of our fore fathers and far-sighted vision is indeed commendable. Fifty years later, the achievements of Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia are there for all to reflect upon today - Gurmat Parchaar, Amrit Sanchar, Kirtan, Ketha, Annual Samelans, Holla Mahalla Games and assistance to the needy, etc.,


The Sikh, Dec 2013

SABHA PAST JATHEDARS

This write up captures the milestones in the chequered history of the Sabha. Most of the Jathedars of the Sabha have been serving in various capacities in the Sabha before and after their terms as Jathedar. Most of them are still very actively involved in Sabha activities. Some are also actively involved in other Sikh organisations and projects.

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SABHA PAST JATHEDARS

The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

13. Jathedar Autar Singh 1991 – 1994 Retired recently as an Associate Professor at Universiti Teknologi MARA, Shah Alam. Founded the Akaal Purkh Ki Fauj with various Units in Malaysia. He also started the Punjabi Bhasha Mela whereby teams all over the country took part. Set up a number of new Divisions such as Fellowship Division, Training & Development Division, Women’s Division and the Punjabi Language Division. A number of Punjabi Language Seminars and Teaching Courses were organised. During his term the Sabha celebrated its Silver Jubilee with a dinner honouring the past Jathedars. Organised the 4 day long Malaysian Sikh Convention which included a two day International Sikh Conference, a Sikh Heritage Exhibition, a one day National Sikh Youth Seminar and a one day National Punjabi Language Workshop. Received a Sri Saheb from Takht Sri Akaal Takht Sahib as our “Insignia of Office of Jathedar”. He was also appointed to the Religious Advisory Committee of Takht Sri Akaal Takht Sahib. 14. Jathedar Baldev Singh 1994 – 1995 Was a Senior Manager of Chartered Bank. During his term the sabha officially launched the AKAAL PURKH KI FAUJ. The FAUJ had three wings – Mighty Khalsa Brigade (MKB), Miri Piri Brigade (MPB) and Sant Sepahi Brigade (SSB) in the country. The MKB for 5 to 11 years children, and the MPB for 12 to 18 year old teenagers, had successfully running Units in 25 towns, run by young parents. These young parents will become the members of the Sant Sephai Brigade.

SABHA PAST JATHEDARS

Autar Singh

Baldev Singh

15. Jathedar Sukdev Singh 1995 – 1997 Was a Pilot with Malaysian Airlines System. Initiated the Sri Deshmesh Band the first Sikh Band in this part of the world and also started the Deshmesh Jatha. Started the Eagle Camps for youths. During his term the Family Path Mala programme was started whereby families were encouraged to do a minimum of 5 Mool Manter Path at 8 pm daily for a month. He also initiated the opening of Sri Deshmesh International school. Sukdev Singh 16. Jathedar Harbinder Singh 1997 – 2000 Runs a training and consultancy firm. The Annual Holla Mahalla Games were started in the year 2000 by the APKF team, whereby youths from the age of 6 to 21 from the Akaal Purkh Ki Fauj Units around the country participated in various sports. Organised the first Grand Vaisakhi Celebration to commemorate the 300 year of the Khalsa in 1999 at the International Youth Centre in Cheras, Kuala Lumpur. The Akaal Purkh Ki Fauj International was officially launched at Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib on 13th April, 1999. The 1st International Jamboree of the Akaal Purkh Ki Fauj was held at Anandpur Sahib in April 1999. Harbinder Singh

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SABHA PAST JATHEDARS

The Sikh, Dec 2013

17. Jathedar Bulvant Singh 2000 – 2002 An Auditor with Boustead and later with Felda and at present based in Canada. During his term the Sabha purchased a 20 acre parcel of land located at the foothill of Fraser Hill in the district of Ampang Pecah, just before reaching Kuala Kubu Baru (International Sikh Centre and later known as Khalsa Land) for the sum of RM1.6 Million. He helmed the fund raising project to pay for the Khalsa Land. 18. Jathedar Harwindar Singh 2002 – 2006 An Accountant and a Trainer consulant. In response to the Tsunami in Aceh, Indonesia, he formed the Global Sikhs which have carried acitivities in Indonesia, Pakistan, Myanmar and local areas affected by disaster. Helped to organise a International Sikh Conference with other societies in Malacca. During his term the Sabha published coffee-table book “Gurdwaras In Malaysia” authored by Sdr. Saran Singh. The term of office of the Jathedar was extended from three, 1-year consecutive terms to two, 2-year consecutive terms. 19. Jathedar Malkith Singh 2006 - 2010 A clerk with a Legal firm in Petaling Jaya. Key player in the acquisition of new Headquarters of Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia at Titiwangsa, Kuala Lumpur. Led the first team under Global Sikhs to assist the Tsunami disaster victims in Acheh, Indonesia. Started celebrating Mothers Day on a big scale. Celebrated the 300th Anniversary of the Gurgadhi Dihara of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji at the new Sabha House in 2008. Started the Sabha Facebook and is a moderator of the Malaysian Punjabi News. Organised various National & International Samelans and Fellowship Camps. Sabha secured its first substantial grant from the Federal Government for its activities during his term. Started celebrating Sikh Environmental Day. A youth group, “Sikh Inside” started during his term. 20. Jathedar Amarjit Singh 2010 – 2012 Served as the Chief Accountant at Koperasi Tentera. During his term the development of the Sabha Camp Site in Khalsa Land, Kuala Kubu Baru was started and the first youth camp was held there. Set up OMG, a youth group which introduced various youth programmes like Smile Day, Cha and Kheer, the Charhdhi Kalaa Run that brought 100-year old marathoner Bhai Fauja Singh to Malaysia, etc. During his term the Sabha published “Q & A on Sikhi – Gurmat Discussions on the Internet” by Autar Singh. Sabha was also given the honour to host the Vaisakhi Open House with the Prime Minister at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur. Another milestone was the Annual National Punjabi Bhasha Mela going regional with competitions held in Penang, Ipoh, Johor Baru, Klang and the National Mela being held at Asia Pacific University, KL.

Bulvant Singh

Harwindar Singh

Malkith Singh

Amarjit Singh 21. Jathedar Pavandeep Singh 2012 – PRESENT A Senior Manager in a leading finance company and one of the youngest Nauajwan to be appointed Jathedar. Further development of facilities and Darbar Sahib at Khalsa Land, Kuala Kubu Baru. Renovations of Sabha House done. Outdoor adventure campsite at Khalsa Land began operations. Started the Nishkam Sewa Project whereby about 100 familes are benefiting from it. Set up a Punjabi Education Center at Khalsa Land catering for Hulu Selangor area. Initiated the bringing of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji from India for the benefit of the Malaysian sangat. Sabha is celebrating its 50th Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan at PD this year. Pavandeep Singh


The Sikh, Dec 2013

SABHA FOUNDING FATHER

Joginder Singh - Sabha founding father Sardar Joginder Singh Ji is now a sprightly 90plus in age. He is one of the remaining 'founding fathers' of the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia. He also wrote perhaps the only book on Sikhi in Bahasa Malaysia 'Ugama Sikh'. His command of the Malay language is so good that he used to teach Malay to potential Malay teachers in the Malay Teachers College in Tanjong Malim. Sardar Sahib has been living in Adelaide, Australia for about forty years now. I had the opportunity of meeting him recently and decided to have a chat with him about the Sabha. He is a little hard of hearing but otherwise fit and well. Below are his thoughts and blessings for the Sabha in its 50th. anniversary. 'This means I was about 40 plus in age and you were about 14 and without a beard and in short pants. Now you look older than me! (Laughs heartily.)' 'One keeps hearing of a lot of political infighting in the Sabha, but the fact is that it has Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji's blessings and it goes on and has done sterling service for Sikh youth in Malaysia and also neighbouring countries like Indonesia and Thailand. The Sabha must be commended for this. I am so proud to have been a part of this wonderful organisation.'

'For those who try to disrupt the Sabha's activities, or let their egos run their actions, I wish to remind them that this Sabha has Baba Ji's blessings and in the end they will only do themselves harm spiritually and pay for their actions. Sewadhars of the Sabha must serve with utter humility to attain Baba Ji's blessings.' 'Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji was my spiritual mentor from age 6. I came from India at that age straight to Malacca and was a student of Baba Ji from that age. (His eyes mist up as he reflects on Baba Ji.) He taught me everything about Sikhi Gurmukhi, Gurbani, Gurmat and Guritihas.' "The four 'G's", I quipped in. He laughs ... 'Let us make it the five 'G's - Gurmukhi, Gurbani, Gurmatt, Gur-Itihas, and GurSikh-Itihas!

Knowing the examplary lives of GurSikhs like Bhai Budha, Bhai Gurdas, Bhai Mani Singh Ji, Bhai Taru Singh Ji and all those wonderful GurSikhs with shudh jivanis, like Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji, are glowing examples of Sikh living. Babaniyan Kahaniyan put-seput kerain'. 'How is Master Pritam Singh Ji? You must send him my warmest regards. Good man - always jovial and in Chardhi Kala.' 'How is Master Karminder Singh? He did a lot of seva for the Sabha but seemed to disappear as soon as he got married!' 'O, you must thank the Sabha. They keep sending me their magazine, the 'Sikh'. It helps me keep in touch and makes me feel good for all the wonderful seva that they are doing.' 'By the way, a few days ago, I sent the Jathedar a very valuable black and white picture of some of my colleagues at the first samelan in Port Dickson. The Sabha had asked for such pictures in a recent magazine. I also wrote a note to him. I hope he will use the picture but please tell him to send it back to me. It had Bhai Bishen Singh, Hardial Singh of Seremban, headmaster Gurbachan Singh Ji and some others.'

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SABHA FOUNDING FATHER / THE ORGINS OF THE NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA 'Bhai Bishen Singh. What a saintly man. He was the granthi in Port Dickson in this period. You know, he used to get RM80 a month as salary and he told the committee that RM40 of that must go regularly for Sabha activities. He used to survive on RM40 a month! That is seva.' 'Headmaster Gurbachan Singh was one of the finest examples of a 'grahasthi' Sikh that I can think of. He was always involved in some kind of seva and was the backbone of the Sabha in its first few years. All of them - Hardial Singh, Sarjit Singh Bassian - all great Sikhs! I hope the Sabha honours them all.' 'And with products like you and the kirtan you do and inspire youth globally, I think we have done well! (He laughs again heartily.)' 'I always keep hearing about this young man Malkith Singh for many many years. Who is he?' (I told him that S. Malkith Singh has been a sewadhar of the Sabha for over 30 years and also a past Jathedar.) 'You must give him my regards too. Nice to hear of such dedicated seva. The Sabha should declare him and Master Pritam Singh as part of the Sabha's Fixed Assets in that case!' (He laughs loudly). 'I really wish I could attend this 50th. anniversary but I am very hard of hearing and it becomes very frustrating for me when I cannot hear in company. But, I will be there in spirit.' 'Ugama Sikh was of course written with the blessings of Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji. By all means, the Sabha can reproduce it. They might have to update the language, perhaps. Bahasa keeps getting changed.' 'My love and blessings for all those who have kept the Sabha going and in fact served to make it even stronger and independent of all other committees, especially gurdwara committees. It now has real estate of its own and is a very strong Sikh lobby organisation in Malaysia for Sikhs. With such power comes great responsibility. May Waheguru guide those who serve the Sabha into the future. I am very proud of our organisation.' (This interview was by Daya Singh conducted with Sardar Joginder Singh Ji on 19September 2013 in Adelaide, South Australia)

The Sikh, Dec 2013

THE ORGINS OF THE SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA, MALAYSIA. Slowly the other youths were also attracted to join our gatherings. So this work continued for some time. Then we had to divide the children in groups so that we could get our message to them.

The humble origins of this great organization took place in Seremban Gurdawara Sahib in Seremban, Negeri Sembilan. The driving force behind this Sabha was one Master Manjit Singh and his friend Master Karamindar Singh. Initially, I (Karamindar Singh) had begun a youth organization called the ‘N. S. Sikh Youth Council’ in which gave the sikh youth an outlet to participate in games, and cultural activities. Later Master Manjit Singh approached me to also participate in religious activities through this organization, to which I readily agreed and renamed the body as ‘ Naujawan Sabha, Seremban’ with the khanda as our logo. This organization thrived with the Gurdawara Sahib as the base. The Committee of the Gurdawara Sahib had given us permission to use two classrooms for our centre. This was in the top storey of the Khalsa School just behind the Gurdwara Sahib. Master Manjit Singh’s idea was to gather the young children who were playing in the Gurdwara compound while the Gurdwara program was going on. This was done by bribing them with sweets, chocolates and ice-cream. The children were eager to get the goodies so they would sit quietly as they knew at the end of the talks on Sikhism they would be rewarded.

We then decided to set up a sports division so that the members could participate in games, as we wanted our members to be well rounded and broad minded. We started to organize hockey and football games with other Sikh youth organizations, This went on for a long time. One day while we were decorating the Gurdwara Sahib for the Vasakhi festival, we met Master Gurbachan Singh and he wanted to talk to me and Manjit Singh. The meeting took place at the residence of Dr, Tara Singh in Rahang. Master Gurbachan Singh Ji suggested that we rename the sabha as the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia and open its membership to all. The first samelan was held at The Sunshine Camp in Port Dickson with 22 participants, all boys in 1962, after that the samelans were held at the Gurdwara Sahib Port Dickson and the girls were accomodated at the Bengal House not far from the Gurdwara. An effort was made by Master Gurbachan Singh and the constitution of the Sabha was drafted and sent to Punjab for Gurmukhi translation. A delegation went to Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji for his blessing and approval, which he readily gave. I think the rest of the history of the sabha is known and recorded, so I am just giving a short history to the best of my knowledge. Karamindar Singh.


The Sikh, Dec 2013

MY MEMORIES OF THE 1ST ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

MY MEMORIES OF THE FIRST SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA SAMELAN IN PORT DICKSON IN 1963 By: Saran Singh Sidhu AMN, AMP, PNM

The first Gurmat Parchaar Samelan in Port Dickson in 1963 was an amalgamation of two Sikh youth bodies, viz. Sikh Naujawan Jatha Selangor and the Baal Sabha in Seremban. Thus came into being the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia which had its first office in Seremban. The writer remembers the late Master Gurbachan Singh and the late Master Manjit Singh who played an important role in making the first samelan success. The participants, all boys, mostly in their teens, were divided into small groups. They were given simple duties as a form of sewa (service). The late Master Gurbachan Singh in his speeches emphasized that we must always remember Waheguru our creator, the One and only One, by reciting Gurbani daily without fail, do good deeds, eg. helping those in real need and lastly to perform sewa (service) in the Gurdwara. As the English saying goes, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. My fondest memory of the first samelan is when all the participants were taken to Port Dickson beach for games (kabadi) and a swim. Everyone had a wonderful time, followed with refreshment. 50 long years have now passed but the pleasant memories remain. Among the friends we made, only a few remain today.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013

THE FIRST JATHEDAR OF SNSM

MASTER GURBACHAN SINGH JI – THE FIRST JATHEDAR OF SNSM Sangat Singh

I first met Master Gurbachan Singh Ji in 1959 in Seremban where, he had come to attend his newly married nephew’s wedding reception. He easily stood out in the crowd in his immaculate white turban that exuded a casual regal aura. A few approached me to find if I knew him. “No, I don’t know him yet but I will get to know him for sure”. By the time, the party ended we were talking to each other, and persuaded him to spend a night at the plantation in Port Dickson. We both had some common interests. We both had read Bhai Vir Singh Ji’s books. More importantly I felt strong vibes of meditative sensations in his presence. In the next couple of days he returned to his post as the headmaster of a school in Pekan (Pahang) leaving behind a delicious feeling of his presence. My prayer for a Gurmukh was answered. “Ha-oo bhaal vikunne ho-ee, aadhaarai raahu na ko-ee” (GGS 145.11) “I have searched in vain, and I am so confused in this darkness and cannot find the path”. In 1960 Masterji just before retiring got himself transferred to Port Dickson and bought himself a house on the seaside. He aptly named the house as ‘MANSUKH’. Since I was posted on Sua Betong Estate, Port Dickson and not far from where he lived, we started to meet regularly particularly on Sundays to attend the Sunday diwan at the PD Gurdwara. In 1961 I got married in India. It was an arranged marriage and my good lady Upkar Kaur came from a large well known Narula family found herself literally in wilderness (pun intended) living in a huge sprawling bungalow away from any

habitation for miles. She was inconsolable and ready to go back to India the next day. Luckily for me there was my colleague Siva Nanthan’s mother living nearby some 7 miles away on Siliau Estate whom we fondly called her ‘mum’ when I had my first posting as Cadet Planter. She literally saved our days old marriage and truly remained a ‘mum’ till she passed away in 1986. The other family was that of newly arrived Master Gurbachan Singh Ji’s in Port Dickson that became the nearest home. Then of course was Dr. Dalbir Singh and his good wife Harmangal Kaur who provided the warmth of a home in Seremban. We became a part of these extended three wonderful families. Then of course the children came from the two newly married couples to fully occupy Upkar and Mangal in rearing them. They are the closest friends to this day. Since I worked for Guthrie & Company the largest Plantation Group in the world. It had mostly Scottish planters with usual heavy accented Scottish homilies to fight loneliness among the womenfolk. The recipe was “Keep them pregnant and keep them in the kitchen”. Story of SNSM. In the company of Master Gurbachan Singh Ji, I became a willing sounding board when, the seeds of Sikh Youth Organization had lain dormant for some time. ‘Catch them young’ Look after the nursery were the key words. The time was ripe: Master Ji was on the verge of retirement. The others roped in were: Bhai Surjit Singh Bassian, Master Joginder Singh a lecturer in Teachers Training College in

Tanjong Malim, Master Karminder Singh and Master Hardial Singh. Unknown to many there was this benign old ‘granthi’ sahib of Port Dickson Gurdwara was first to bless the idea of a Sabha for the youth. He was Bhai Bishan Singh Ji. I first met him in 1959. He was around 80, of frail frame that had suffered the ravages of time. He was a picture of humility and his lips flickering and eyes half closed repeating ‘Waheguru’ at all times. He did no ‘kirtan or katha’ but had profound knowedge of ‘gurbani’. He spoke little but smiled more. He was deeply respected by the ‘sangat’ of Port Dickson. He was a living picture of “Jinh pat andar bahar gudar te bhale sansar; (GGS 373.16). “Those who have silk on the inside and rags on the outside, are the great ones of the world”. Babaji was known to have ‘wak satya’ that is, whatever he said would turn out to be true. I would try to sit at his feet at least once a week. One day a car came bearing a sickly girl of about 16 and was helped out by her father to approach Babaji in a typical fashion “Baba do something for this girl”. “Oye bhalay loka, if my saying something would come true, shouldn’t I cure first my own asthmatic affliction ”. Nevertheless, let’s go up and do the ‘ardas’. If it pleases Him he would help. Every year during the AGM, Babaji’s usual refrain was to reduce his paltry ‘gaji’ (salary) as he was now quite old. There was a small mosque nearby and was in need of repairs and some extensions. The mosque committee decided to raise some money by organizing a film show and sell the tickets at RM 1/each. They went to see ‘Babaji’


The Sikh, Dec 2013 hoping to sell him a ticket or two. But Babas said that he never went to a cinema hall, and since they needed money for the House of God, he donated RM100/- The mosque committee was astounded. This was more than his month’s salary and he gave away without a second thought The Port Dickson Gurdwara had a few rooms that they would some times rent out. There was a PWD labourer by the name of Kikar Singh who approached Babaji if he could rent a room. The monthly rental fixed by the committee RM30/ but Kikar Singh said that he could afford only RM20/- ‘Koi gal nahee’ never mind you pay RM20/Without his knowing Baba added RM10/- from his pocket and that went on for nearly 2 years. Since Kikar Singh did his own cooking one day following a ‘jhor mela’ he couldn’t find his half filled ghee tin and approached Baba Ji in a rather abrasive manner. ‘Oye Baba mera ‘ghay’ tha tin kittah gaye’. Baba Ji, told him that he never used any ‘ghay’ and usually had a bit of cereal. “No, who else is in the Gurdwara, so it must be you, he shoutied at the top of his voice. Just opposite the Gurdwara lived S. Bhagat Singh an erstwhile Head Clerk of PWD who knew how to treat the likes of Kakir Singh (who looked every bit like the acacia tree too) He came out and held Kikar by the neck and told him that did he know that Baba ji had been paying RM10/- a month from his pocket to make up RM30/- rental for the last two years. ‘ Would he take your paltry RM2/- worth of tin’. Hearing this he fell at Baba Ji’s feet, and soon after did find his half used tin lying in a corner. Gurbachan Singh Ji and I would often visit Baba Ji and seek his blessings for the ‘Naujwan Sabha’ that was still in a formative stage in our minds. Quite often we would take Baba Bishen Singh Ji with us to visit Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji in Melaka to seek his blessings. On one occasion I remember he sat in my car to go to Melaka when suddenly he asked me to stop and said “Let me take some sevadars with me”. He came back in a jiffy and said ‘let’s go’. Said I “where

THE FIRST JATHEDAR OF SNSM are the sevadars Baba Ji?” , “Oh! they are in my pocket meaning –money of course”. Such was the richest care free man in seeming rags who was the first to bless the formation of SNSM. I have it on authority from Master Joginder Singh when he offered half of his princely monthly salary of RM80/ to SNSM as his monthly contribution. This was of course graciously refused. IN 1963 the first ever mini ‘Semalan’ took place in Port Dickson Gurdwara. If I am not mistaken there were just 20 boys. Dya Singh Ji then a lad of 13 was prominently among the group. I had a group photograph which unfortunately I cannot trace it now. This batch was housed in Sunshine Youth Hostel and Camp- not far from Master Gurbachan Singh Ji’s house on the 3rd mile. The children had a whale of time and could swim in the sea just steps away. Dya Singh Ji has recounted the history in his excellent article in Sikhchic. Please click the site: http://www.sikhchic.com/people/50 _years_of_yeoman_service_the_a mazing_sikh_naujawan_sabha_of_ malaysia An application was finally made to the Registrar of Societies to formally register SNSB. It took quite a while to meet all the requirements and finally the much awaited letter of approval arrived. The registered address was the Gurdwara Sahib, Seremban and believe it is so till this day. Bhai Isher Singh Ji was then the presiding Granthi of Seremban Gurdwara. Master Gurbachan Singh Ji quite rightly was chosen as the first Jathedar. According to the constitution the Jathedar appoints his cabinet. I was elected as the first treasurer with a opening balance of RM50/- in the kitty. The monthly subscription was just RM 1/- to make it affordable. I also became a life member and if not mistaken my number was 10 (das numberyia) which in Punjabi parlance was not too complimentary. The first most eminent guest invited was Dr. Ganda Singh the

most celebrated historian. This was arranged by S. Joginder Singh ji a lecturer in Teachers’ Training College in Tanjong Malim. We had the honour to host him on the Plantation for a week and what an exhilarating period it was to sit at his feet and learn first hand about the Sikh History that came alive. He did go on a lecture tour and the last one was at Ipoh. An interesting thing happened. On return to Seremban he realized that he had left his shoes at the Ipoh Gurdwara. The next day he had an appointment with the then Indian High Commissioner Taybji. I offered to buy him a pair of shoes but he flatly refused and chose to go in his suit and wearing a pair of plastic chappals. “His retort was that Taybji was meeting him and not his shoes” For a full account I commend you to read Dya Singh Ji’s excellent account “SIKHING OUTSIDE THE BOX” and of course my eye witnessed comments. Please click the following site: http://www.sikhchic.com/current_ev ents/sikhing_outside_the_box Dya Singh Ji together with his ‘Bai Gurmukh Singh Ji’ have filled in some of the missing details to complete the picture of SNSM. You have retraced your own fateful journey when, you were among the firsts to attend SNSM seminal beginning – a modest inaugural samelan in early 60’s at the unassuming wooden Port Dickson Gurdwara followed by a couple more samelans. It was really a one man, Master Gurbachan Singh Ji’s dream that has made SNSM today a force to reckon with. Dya Singh Ji, you were a part of that seeding operation. In so doing we re-live that history through the eyes of our children and thus cheat death. This year we would be celebrating its 50th birthday. (Sangat Singh)

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The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan 1963 - Port Dickson

1989 - Batu Pahat

1964 - Port Dickson

1990 - Kampar

1965 - Port Dickson

1991 - Seremban

1967 - Port Dickson

1992 - Rawang

1968 - Port Dickson

1993 - Kampar

1969 - Port Dickson

1994 - Johor Bahru

1970 - Port Dickson

1995 - Tampin

1971 - Kampung Pandan Kuala Lumpur

1996 - Petaling Jaya

1972 - Klang

1997 - Klang

1973 - Kampung Pandan Kuala Lumpur

1998 - Malacca

1974 - Taiping

1999 - Ipoh

1975 - Johor Bahru

2000 - Penang

1976 - Malacca

2001 - Johor Bahru

1977 - Petaling Jaya

2002 - Seremban

1978 - Ipoh

2003 - Klang

1979 - Klang

2004 - Johor Bahru

1980 - Bentong, Pahang

2005 - Klang

1981 - Ipoh

2006 - Port Dickson

1982 - Johor Bahru

2007 - Klang

1983 - Prai

2008 - Rembau

1984 - Seremban

2009 - Bentong

1985 - Batu Pahat

2010 - Rembau

1986 - Klang

2011 - Klang

1987 - Ipoh

2012 - Ipoh

1988 - Klang

2013 - Port Dickson


The Sikh, Dec 2013

THE AMAZING SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA

THE AMAZING SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA Dya Singh

Within 1961 to 1963 Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji organised and headed a 'jatha' to visit all the known pockets of Sikhs throughout Malaysia. In his jatha he had with him a number of luminaries including my venerable father Giani Harchand Singh (for kirtan), and others who joined him whenever and wherever they could. They were headmaster Gurbachan Singh Ji of Port Dickson; my Chacha Ji - Sardar Sarjit Singh Ji 'Bassian'; Sardar Joginder Singh Ji of Tanjong Malim amongst others. I also remember that most often, our driver was uncle Partap Singh Ji Calais who was always there like a backbone. I remember joining this 'jatha' on a number of occasions either on the side vaja to my father or playing the tabla. I recollect programmes in Kangar, Alor Star, Wada Gurdwara Penang, Taiping, Kuala Kangsar, Ipoh, Kampar, Tapah, Bidor, Teluk Anson, Rawang, Klang, Tatt Khalsa, Seremban, Malacca, Johor Bharu and also gurdwaras in Singapore. I was then 11 to 13 years old. These were the heydays of Sikhi in Malaysia. Granthis were of a very high calibre and of moral and pious 'rehni' immersed in sewa rather than how much money they could make. From personal memory, starting from the north, there was Giani Harnam Singh Balav in Penang; Bhai Gemdoor Singh Ji (just before he moved to Tampin) and Master Naseeb Singh in Taiping; Ragi Badan Singh in Kuala Kangsar; Giani Gurdial Singh and Giani Gurcharan Singh Bhaur in Ipoh; Baba Tull in Tapah; Bhai Rann Singh(who is still granthi in Malacca today) in Kampar; Giani Inder Singh (father of former Sabha jathedar Harvy Gill) in Sentul; Giani Bachitar Singh in Tatt Khalsa; Baba Sham Singh in

High Street Police; Giani Babu Singh in MainDoab; Bapu Ji, Giani Harchand Singh Ji was then in Cochrane Road gurdwara which then moved to become Wadda Gurdwara Kampong Pandan and he then moved to Police High Street; Giani Jang Singh in Seremban; and Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji in Malacca. These were all my mentors.

(Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji doing the arambic ardaas for the building of the Wada Gurdwara, Kampong Pandan.23.8.1963. Beside him is Giani Harchand Singh Ji, father of Dya Singh (Australia) and first granthi of that gurdwara. Between them is Baba Sham Singh Ji, the longest serving granthi in Malaysia - 52 years at High Street Police gurdwara. Notice Baba Ji's one slipper on and one off - a true 'sant' without any hangups. Baba Ji never had a harsh word for anyone.)

(A Granthi Percharak Samelan in Malacca with some leaders of other faiths and interested gurdwara perbandhaks in very early 60's) Caption says Aug.1963. Giani Gemdoor Singh of Taiping/Tampin is sitting right behind the caption and three to his right is Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji.)

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THE AMAZING SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA

(Those were days of 'Granthi Samelans' and granthis took back resolutions made at Granthi Samelans to be adopted by gurdwara committees within their communities. On extreme left Bhai Kartar Singh Garib, father of Dato Dr. Karam Singh of Kangar; next to him Giani Babu Singh of MainDoab gurdwara; smiling and facing camera is Giani Harchand Singh, father of Dya Singh of Australia and on the right is Giani Jang Singh Ji of Seremban.)

All the 'tours' that I have done in Malaysia since, have been my own nostalgic trips down memory lane reminiscing those wonderful times and reliving my memories with all these wonderful luminaries especially Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji and my venerable father. The idea of forming a Sikh youth organisation germinated mainly in Seremban between some 'naujawans' spearheaded by one Manjit Singh who was unofficially, in my view, the first Jathedar, in 1963; Master Karminder Singh (now in Temerloh), Master Pritam Singh Ji who still serves in the Sabha office today, and Gurdarshan Singh (now in Melbourne), amongst others. They were ably supported by headmaster Gurbachan Singh Ji; S. Joginder Singh Ji; S. Hardial Singh Ji (also of Seremban); S. Sarjit Singh Ji 'Bassian' and S. Sangat Singh Ji. Menjit Singh Ji's untimely demise robbed the fledgeling Sabha of one of its potentially great leaders. Within all these Sikhi 'perchar' activity, the first 'naujawan samelan' was therefore organised in Port Dickson in 1963 under the auspices of Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji. Headmaster Gurbachan Singh Ji was the main organiser. I remember him as a very spiritual person with a glow on his face, love for everyone and a gentle soothing voice. Other similar examples were my Chacha Ji Sarjit Singh Ji Bassian, Sardar Joginder Singh Ji, S. Hardial Singh of Seremban and Sardar Sangat Singh Ji who lives in Bangsar,

Kuala Lumpur. There is a confusion over whether there were two 'samelans' that year or just one. I believe there were two - one closer to Vesakhi where there were only about twenty of us staying at the Sunshine Camp in Port Dickson and coming to the gurdwara every morning. The second bigger samelan was for about 60 of us including about twenty young ladies in December. This time the boys slept in the gurdwara. The girls stayed in a hostel across the road. There was the usual worry of boys and girls being in the same place for so many days, but a precedent was set. Those days it was taboo for Sikh boys and girls to be seen together! I also remember that about ten youths cycled from Seremban for the samelan. I remember the old Port Dickson gurdwara which was then made of wood. It was right on the coast then and one could stand on the back wall and dive into the sea at high tide. Today the sea can barely be seen from the gurdwara. It has been pushed back almost 200 metres on reclaimed. Land Baba Bishen Singh Ji, a very highly, spiritually evolved soul, was the granthi then. He exuded a sense of peace, tranquility, humility and saintliness. Of the 'old guard' most have passed on. At the time of writing this, Sardar Joginder Singh Ji, well into his nineties, lives in Adelaide. S. Sangat Singh Ji is in Kuala

The Sikh, Dec 2013 Lumpur. Master Pritam Singh Ji, deserving of all accolades still serves in the Sabha office arguably the one and only sewadhar who has had a direct connection with the Sabha since its inception. Master Karminder Singh Ji lives in Temerloh. Gurdarshan Singh lives in Melbourne, Australia. I do not believe that a single year has passed since 1963 that an annual samelan of some sort has not been held in Malaysia. That is the enviable record of Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia. It started with 22 participants and then about 60. Today it caters for over 1500 participants and sewadhars at the annual samelan and almost every weekend there is some sort of mini-samelan somewhere in Malaysia! The Sabha's influence now reaches out in even organising samelans in Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and even in Australia. From amongst the youth, my recollection is that the first 'unofficial' Jathedar of the unregistered Sabha was Menjit Singh of Seremban followed by Master Karminder Singh. Gurdarshan Singh too played a very prominent part in the early years. It was in 1967 that the Sabha was registered. Sardar Joginder Singh Ji recalls that the main objection to another body being formed came from the Tatt Khalsa committee representative at the meeting, held in Seremban. He, and a few other gurdwara 'parbandhaks', felt that there was no necessity for another organisation. That 'naujawan' activities should be part and parcel of each gurdwara's portfolio. He told me with pride that the opposition fueled the determination of the few and the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia was registered as a body and headmaster Gurbachan Singh Ji became the first official Jathedar. Today the Sabha proudly stands as an independent Sikh body and boasts real estate in the form of administrative buildings, accommodation rental buildings, twenty acres in rural Kuala Kubu Bharu and also a sizeable stock and share portfolio besides vans and other assets. The average annual samelan


The Sikh, Dec 2013 today is normally held in a college campus because it has to cater for around 1000 participants with a further 500 odd sewadhars for security, langgar and also to facilitate. A generational crop of homegrown 'facilitators' has been nurtured from the sixties well versed in Sikhi and 'parchaar' delivery techniques including uplifting kirtan. There is no dependence on the Akal Takhat nor the SGPC for parcharaks or kirtanias and thank God for that because they would not get much help from our Punjab bodies anyway! Unfortunately, on a side note, even granthis today are more of a mercenary kind who are only interested in their income rather than the service they provide. Malaysia needs to nurture and train its own granthis too - and I can slowly see this happening. In charge of Khalsa Land, the 'retreat' being developed in Kuala Kubu Bharu is young Bhai Sarjit Singh Ji and his wife who are both Malaysian born Gursikhs. May more such youth decide to make 'granthihood' their livelihood and with Waheguru Ji's grace, may committees, look after these new crop of granthis rather than treating them as paid staff or hired help. Under the umbrella of the Sabha, 'Global Sikhs' was born. It is an organisation which came into being after the tsunami which devastated Acheh in Indonesia mainly. Global Sikhs is the disaster-relief arm of the Sabha and has already earned accolades for its sterling sewa in Acheh after the tsunami. It shall cater for disaster victims in and around Malaysia. It also did relief work in Burma a few years ago after a hurricane there. It has also been involved in relief work in floods in east coast of Malaysia and also southern Thailand. Other activities of the Sabha besides samelans, relief work, teach-the-trainer workshops and excursions are: Vesakhi celebrations; Punjabi Bhasha melas; shudh path reading competitions; kirtan competitions; leadership, self-improvement and career courses for school leavers and college students; one-parent family relief; special workshops for widows, orphans and single

THE AMAZING SIKH NAUJAWAN SABHA MALAYSIA mothers on self-improvement techniques, career advice, and assistance; temporary accommodation for needy families before they are housed and organising kirtanias and parcharaks for gurdwaras. A Training & Development arm has been set up using human resource management experts from within the Sabha for inhouse courses. As mentioned earlier, the Sabha has groomed local talent in kirtan, bilingual inspirational session presenters and parchar. It is common to see lawyers and doctors and other professionals doing kirtan, holding inspirational sessions and giving talks on Sikhi. Sabha sewadhars do amazing work throughout Malaysia making langgar, helping in gurdwaras on committees or doing sewa and most importantly inspiring the youth. Though I left Malaysia about 45 years ago, I have kept in touch with the Sabha and seen it grow and flourish from a distance. Many names and faces flash before my eyes - besides the names already mentioned - Master Daljit Singh; Malkith; Autar(Avtar) Singh/s; a few Sukhdev Singhs; Jasbir Singh; Sukhinderpal Singh; Karamjit Singh; Balvinder Singh; Bulvant Singh; Bhajan Singh; a number of Inderjeet Singhs; Giani Lakhbir Singh; 'Raja' Harcharanjit Singh; Boghar Singh; Amarjit Singh; Jagdev Singh; Harvinder Singh; Mohan Singh; Harbhajan Singh; Tersame Singh; Gurpal Singh Bhullar, Dato Dr. Karam Singh; late Dr. Hardial Singh ... and the list goes on. The Sabha has had its share of political upheavels but sanity has normally prevailed. There is a loose council of past jathedars whose advice is sought whenever there is a crisis and with Guru Ji's grace, the Sabha continues with its sterling work for Sikh youth in the region. I shall offer gentle reminder to those who have a tendency of being disruptive and destructive The Sabha has the blessings of some highly spiritually evolved beings like Sant Baba Sohan Singh Ji and Sant Baba Niranjan Singh Ji. It also has the blessings of the Guru Ji. Let not your egoes run away with you. Humility is the

cornerstone of any sewa that one wishes to do. Any destructive or disruptive actions shall have adverse effects on your own karma in the long run. There has generally been transparency in its 'hisab-kitab' and the ideals of Sarbat Khalsa and Sikhi spirit prevail. The Sabha played an important part in my formative years in the 60's and also when I decided to look upon 'gursangeet' as my main vocation in the 90's. One sewadhar, Malkith Singh, who has also served two terms as Jathedar and is an ardent sewadhar of the Sabha for over twenty years, invited my group for a number of Malaysia-wide tours in the late 90's and early 2000 - necessary training ground before I took my kirtan group to other countries. This, fiftieth year (2013), our jatha was honoured to do a 50th. anniversary 'kirtan yatra' of 37 gurdwaras in the month of October, bringing back some wonderful memories of the past. There is a common saying amongst Sikhs that when gurdwaras were 'kechay', Sikhi was 'pekee' and as the gurdwaras became 'pekay' Sikhi became ‘'kechee'’. My observation is that it is not necessarily true for Malaysia. Yes, the last time I toured Malaysia - 12 years ago, there were still some gurdwaras which were 'kechay' but on this tour almost all gurdwaras (with the exception of just Tanjong Tualang, which is in the process of becoming 'peka') are now 'pekay', but I must also report that I have been pleasantly surprised with the Sikhi activity almost everywhere especially amongst the youth! Sikhi here is not becoming kechee. We should draw positive feelings from this, and hence strengthen our collective resolve to be of Sikhi service to our younger and future generations and leave them a strong legacy to carry forward. Of note, are the youth activities I have noticed in Kangar with general active participation by youth; Sungei Petani also for active youth participation in the gurdwara; Bayan Bharu (spearheaded by veer Sukhinderpal) in gurmat, paath and kirtan; Butterworth in Punjabi and kirtan; Seremban in

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PHOTOS OF LATE SAMELAN 1960s

general participation by youth; Sentul in especially classical kirtan with taanti instruments spearheaded by Chamkaur; youth participation in Shapah Klang and Johor Bharu Gurdwara. I must also mention that there are some good granthis around. All they need is some urging to pay greater attention towards youth. That depends on the local Sabha representatives working in liaison with the gurdwara committes. We need to remain upbeat, in Chardhi Kala, and continue to work towards more bilingual Sikhi perchar and making Sikhi more relevant and 'user-friendly' to today and tomorrow Sikh youth. Responsible evolution with firm feet in our 'picha', our past, is necessary. Unnecessary and long rituals need to be done away with. Gurdwara services must be more relevant for youth rather than just continuing with routine services. Greater preparation in the carrying out of 'parchar' and also participation of local sangat members in delivering relevant discourses in both Punjabi and also English need to be encouraged besides 'simran' sessions. Most importantly, may we all stick to mainstream Akal Takhat maryadha. It is so pleasing to note 'gurbani vichar' classes being conducted by various deliverers and proof of this need is in the fact that a great many youth attend! Make gurdwara-going more relevant, and Sikhs will attend. The continuity, growth and progress of the Sabha is testimony to the professionalism of the original and current Malaysian Sikh youth sewadhars over five decades, the blessings of elevated souls and Akal Purakh. May the Sabha continue to serve the needs of the Sikhs not only in Malaysia but also South-East Asia, New Zealand and Australia, especially the younger generations, in progressive Sikh spirituality and may WAHEGURU bless the organisation with Chardhi Kala. May it become a shining example of how Sikhi parchar can be carried out in any part of the globe.

The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN 1963


The Sikh, Dec 2013

PHOTO OF LATE SAMELAN 1960s

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN 1964

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PHOTO OF LATE SAMELAN 1960s

The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN 1967


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN AT P.D. April, 1970

Young members looking forward to the bright future. (” Guru mera sung sada hai nalae”)

Learning to swim across the Ocean of Life

Jathedar chosen is the one who knows the real value of Sewa (service) ! Sewadars who not only preach but also practise what they preach! (”Sewak ko sewa bhan ayee”)

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

The Sikh, Dec 2013

The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN 1970 - KG PANDAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PETALING JAYA - 1977 Samelan 1977 was held at Petaling Jaya in the month of December, 1977. 300 participants attended this Samelan.The girls were accomodated at Gurdwara Tatt Khalsa while the boys at Petaling Jaya Gurdwara. Talks, keertan, debate, question - answer were among the highlights of the Samelan. The Samelan was the venue for the ardaas of the first satsang started by Johore Bahru Naujawans.


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PETALING JAYA - 1977

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PETALING JAYA - 1977


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN IPOH - 1978 The Annual Samelan was held at the Guru Nanak Instituition in Ipoh from 18th to 24th December 1978. About 500 youths from all over Malaysia and few from Singapore took part in the Samelan. A wide range of topics were covered during the one week Samelan. We are sure that all the participants benefitted from this Samelan. We had participants not only from Malaysia but two buses load of participants from Singapore. The highlights of the Samelan was participants were divided according to the areas the came from and formed units and the remaining were grouped together. We also had one Gursikh sponsoring Durians for all the participants and Sewadars. This Samelan was the first time that participants numbers exceeded 500 pax.

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN BATU PAHAT - 1985 More then 550 naujawans attended the 1985 Samelan which was held at Sekolah Menegah Kolam Air, Batu Pahat, Johore from 15th to 21st December, 1985. The response from the naujawans seems to be increasing year by year. It appears to be a good indicator of the fast-spreading awareness among naujawans towards the need for Sikhi guidance.

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KLANG - 1986 Samelan 86 had a class of its own. As it records the largest number of participants (804) a samelan has ever had, this Samelan would also go down in memory as the most resplendent and illustrious. The spiritual morale of the samelan, already bursting at its seams with the uncountable Fathes and Jikaras, was hoisted to a climax with a jubilant performance by the Khalsa Band. Even the heavy rain failed to dampen the spirits. As the clouds roared, so did the drums of the band, as if in a challenge to give the most fitting and spectacular welcome to the Swari of Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj. The splendant panj pyare and the colourful canopy were indeed a sight to look at and be proud. Drenched as they were, the Band members proved their victory over the rain by giving a lively performance to the thrilled and excited participants who had jammed the corridors of the school to watch the Swari being brought in. Thereafter began the seven days of learning, sharing, praying, voluntering in doing sewa, making friends and enjoying a totally satisfying atmosphere and surrounding. Each day began as early as 4am, with prayers, classes, talks, forums, shows, games, dramas and plenty of kirten to enjoy before the day ended at 10pm. To ensure participants had enough energy to go through the hectic day, they were treated to new and exciting dishes by the langgar section. Every effort was made to give the participants a chance to live a model life of a Khalsa during the Samelan period. Talk of this Samelan would not be complete without mentioning the great benefit participants derived from the presence of Sant Baba Makhan Singh Ji and Ragi Jatha of Bhai Sahib Bhai Gurmail Singh Ji, both of whom took a keen and personal interest in the Samelan.

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN Inspired by it all, 40 naujawans took the Amrit. Many more were inspired to make commitments to lead better and more meaningful life when they returned home. It was a successful samelan. The proof being the tears that flowed on the last day. It was difficult to believe the beautiful event was over, but as they say, all good things must come to an end.

The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN IPOH - 1987 Samelan 87 was magnificent event. Packed with 850 participants and another 100 sewadars.It was held at Anderson School, Ipoh from 19th to 26th December, 1987. It was nothing short of a grand event. It had everything a Samelan enthusiast would want – fun, knowledge and excitement. Inspirational sessions, fancy dress, football, milo during a thunderstorm, Amrit Sanchaar, drama session were the highlights of this event.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KLANG - 1988 Samelan 1988 was held at A.C.S. School, Klang from 17th to 23rd December, 1988. About 700 participants and sewadars attended this Samelan. Changes were made for the successful implementation of certain new administrative procedures. In the morning programmes, the Inspirational Kirtan Jathas and Lecturers did their level best to perform wonderfully. The great variety and diversity in the Kirtan and talks made this Samelan truly memorable indeed. The elective afternoon programmes (3.00 – 4.00 p.m.) were given a new approach this year whereby speakers from various organizations such as the Police, Health Ministry, Road Transport Division were invited to deliver their talks on issues such as drug abuse, dental care, alcoholism and road safety amongst others.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN BATU PAHAT - 1989 THE gathering of the young minds is what Samelan is all about. The annual event provides the youths an opportunity to meet and rekindle the passion of friendship and companionship. About 400 youths made their way to Batu Pahat for Samelan ’89. Some came in cars, others thronged in by busses while others marched in with various modes of transport. But nothing stopped or deterred them from making their presence felt in the event of the year for Sikh youths in this country – the Annual Gurmat Parchar Samelan organised by the Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia. “To the new comers, Samelan was an experience never really imagined before. It was different from the past experiences, much different.” From the start till the final salutation to Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj, it was a colourful affair. All in all, it was a beautiful and splendid one week break for the participants – young and old. As in the past years, numerous first timers appeared at the Samelan. However, others were ‘Samelan veterans’. To the new comers, Samelan was an experience never really imagined before. It was different from all past experience, much, much different. “Why did I not attend Samelans earlier?” some asked. The one week span was indeed a precious episode for them. To the veterans, the Samelan served as an arena to rekindle the friendship with fellow brothers and sisters from all over the country – a friendship formed over the years. It was a chance to foster better ties An occasion for sharing the love, and rejoicing spirit of togetherness.

In the Samelan, the naujawans were impressed upon the importance of togetherness. Togetherness forms the core of the Khalsa brotherhood. It imparts love, a vital element in religion. “Na ko beri, nehi begana. Sagal sang ham ko baneayee. (None is my enemy,none a stranger. All are friends).” Was the theme for this Samelan The Annual Gurmat Parchaar Samelan was undoubtedly the occasion for the great gathering of the young minds – the event of the year.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KAMPAR - 1990 OUR MIGHTY FORCE Following the tradition started many years ago, naujawans from around the country gathered together at the Annual Gurmat Samelan. This year, more than 400 youths camped out for one week school in Kampar, Perak. Samelan used to be a boy only affair. Today, more than half the participants are girls. Compared to 50 – odd participants in those years, samelans today converges together no less than 400 young minds. And together with them are more than 100 sewadars - men and women of all walks of life participating in the annual youth camp. For them, samelan is an arena to rekindle the fires of Sikhi. This year’s samelan theme was Kal Taaran Guru Nanak Aaiya. For six days beginning Nov 17, that theme was repeated over and over again. As in the previous years, participants were exposed to various subjects, including lectures on sikhi social and career. Then there are the daily inspirational sessions to motivate the participants. Many of the participants in this year’s samelan were new faces. Also in the forceful group was an Australian young lady who was in this country for her holidays. On the second last day, 31 Sikh youths joined the Khalsa Brotherhood by partaking the Amrit. Congratulations to these brothers and sisters for their courageous decision to thread the path of the Khalsahood.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN SEREMBAN - 1991 Samelan 1991 was held at Sekolah Tunku Ampuan Durah, Jalan Sikamat, Seremban from 17th to 23rd November, 1991. More than 400 participants from around the country took part with about 100 sewadars. The theme of the Samelan was “Thur Ki Bani Aiyee, Tin Sagli Chint Mi-tayee”

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN RAWANG - 1992 Samelan 1992 was held at Rawang, Selangor. It brought together more than 650 Naujawans (age 5 to 26) and about 100 sewadars. We also had the presence of esteemed Jathedar of Takhat Sri Keshgarh Sahib, Singh Sahib Prof. Manjit Singh and the renowned historian, Principal Satbir Singh. They conducted Gurmat Enrichment Course for sewadars and members of the Sangat.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KAMPAR - 1993 Samelan 1993 was held at Kampar, Perak from 14th to 21st November, 1993. About 650 Naujawans and 100 sewadars participated in this Samelan. They Sikhs of all walks of live were present at the Samelan. Some already had some degree of understanding of the teachings of Guru Ji. Others were fresh, learning from scratch. But together, they stayed, ate, worshipped, laughed and cried. We again had the presence of the renowned Sikh historian and writer, Principal Satbir Singh. Principal Sahib handled a special programmes for the sewadars. Participants also had a chance to join in a question and answer session with him.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN JOHOR BAHRU - 1994 Samelan 1994 was held at Johor Bahru from 20th to 27th November, 1994. About 650 Naujawans and Sewadars participated in this Samelan. Dr. Gurbakhsh Singh former Professor and Dean of Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, India was the guest speaker at this samelan. Dr Ji has written a number of books on Sikh philosophy. Among them are Questions and Answers for the Sikh Youth, a very useful and appropriate book for youth in dealing with their numerous queries on the Sikh Faith. He made a good impact, upon the youths at the Samelan. Talking to a Naujawan, he had this to say “I have learned on thing, my brother, the Guru’s work never ends. Keep on at it and keep doing it”.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN TAMPIN - 1995 Samelan 1995 was held at Tampin, Negeri Sembilan was held in the month of November, 1995. About 600 youths from around the country and Singapore gathered for this samelan. The Theme of the Samelan was TEAM KHALSA! And what is a ‘team’? It is Together, Everybody Achieves More. When we work with a common goal, we work as a TEAM. The Khalsa is one great, universal and dynamic team. Together, we are all going to make it happen.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PETALING JAYA - 1996 Samelan 1996 was held at Petaling Jaya from 15th to 21st December, 1996. About 800 Naujawans and sewadars attend this Samelan. One of the most powerful aspects of the Samelan is togetherness. Here, Naujawans have a gilt-edge opportunity to mingle. They get to be among those of their fellow faith and have a wonderful time in sharing experiences and starting new friendships. If there is one group that really enjoys the Samelan, it must be the Mighties! These are the younger participants who practically have a camp within a camp. They have their own group of coordinators and programmers.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KLANG - 1997 Samelan 1997 was held at A.C.S. Klang in December, 1997. About 1000 Naujawans and sewadars attend this Samelan. There is no denying that the Samelan has had a profound impact on many participants, especially on their spiritual awakening. Some senior sewadars refer to the Samelan as a time of farming where the seeds of Sikhi are planted with love. It sinks its roots deep into the souls of those whose mind and heart are fertile and ready for the bounty of Sikhi.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN MALACCA - 1998 Samelan 1998 was held at Malacca from 20th to 27th December, 1998. About 800 participants and sewadars attend this Samelan. We also had the esteemed presence of Jathedar of Takhat Sri Keshgarh Sahib, Singh Sahib Prof. Manjit Singh and Dr. Vikram Singh from Gurmat College, Patiala. They conducted Gurmat Enrichment Course for sewadars and interested members of the Sangat. “I always look forward to the Inspirational Session on the Amrit Sanchaar Day. It gives me the umphhh that I need to carry me through”A Sewadar at the Samelan.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN IPOH - 1999 Samelan 1999 was held in Sekolah Menegah Teknik Persiaran Brash, Ipoh from 19th to 25th December, 1999. The Theme of the Samelan was “Sagal Duar Ko Shaad Kay, Gahio Tuhaaro Duar�. More than 1200 Participants and Sewadars attended this Samelan. This Samelan was described as the happening Samelan. Many participants enjoyed the learning modules, loved the nitnem sessions and welcomed the Spiritual Enchancement Session. The Inspiration Session was brilliant while the social dynamics were good. Those who came to learn, enjoyed the samelan. They were spoilt for choice;- Survival skills, sant sepahi training, learning waja and tabla, Sikh way of Life, understanding gurbani, IT, Sikh History, newsletter, problem solving and decision making were some of the modules offered and enjoyed. The social dynamics activities included a giant crossword puzzle, a jigsaw puzzle made up of districts of Punjab, etc. The spiritual enrichment sessions saw an effort to provide participants with spiritually enriching stories and activities.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PENANG - 2000


The Sikh, Dec 2013

LIFE FROM SAMELAN 2013 - PORT DICKSON

LIFE FROM SAMELAN 2013 - PORT DICKSON

Gurmat – Living It At the time of writing this article, Day 1 of Samelan is very much underway. In commemorating with the 50th anniversary of our Annual Gurmat Parchar Samelan, we saw a stronger focus to move the Samelan more towards its core, instilling Gurmat Parchar inspirations to its youths. Each day the Learning Module extending to the afternoon sessions is defined with a specific aspiration in mind. Our desire is to help youths appreciate that Sikhi values are universal values and not limited to Sikhs only. When we look at inspiring role model of different faiths we realize that their values are no different from Sikhi values. Warren Buffet and others have values so similar to us that it reminds us that God’s virtues are embraced in all of God’s creation and only our limited outlook see it within the narrow confines of Sikhi. This time we are also experimenting with Jatha Coordinators to be in the forefront interacting with the participants. We hope to achieve two possible outcomes: 1. Reduce the generation gap between participants and facilitators enabling participants to be more receptive in embracing Gurmat inspirations through better interactions. 2. Our aspiration is Jatha Coordinators who facilitates these sessions will be able to internalize Gurmat inspirations much readily and be role models that participants can align to in future. In the morning Learning Module, we focus in providing deeper appreciation of “TRUTH” that transcends all religions. We want participants to appreciate that TRUTH they source within society may be incomplete and if remain unchecked limits their growth and potential. We want them to build a connection from Sikhi as they know it and develop that linkage to Sangat, Guru Nanak’s philosophy, and Shabad

Guru. These will ultimately gear them to realize that all this support structures will build their consciousness to a level that helps them discover their purpose, talent and infuse with a passion to see this calling true. 1. We start the journey in getting youths to open up how they have been connecting to Sikhi. Our hope is participants will get a rich appreciation of what Sikhi means to them. Some see it from Gurdwara sewa, while others may see it in nitnem banies , attending gurdwara programs, Langgar, etc. This diverse perspective opens their minds to appreciate that each journey and connection to Sikhi is different to each one of them, each playing a critical role in shaping their thoughts/ behaviors and slowly aligning them to Sikhi values and virtues. We hope this will help open up their minds to see Sikhi in more holistic way and create a path for them to appreciate that Sikhi extends to universal values that are consistent to teachings of other non-Sikh faiths. 2. As participants connect to Sikhi at a personal level we work at extending this link to Sangat and hopefully help participants to see Sangat beyond Gurdwaras. We like to inspire participants to see all of God’s creation as Sangat. Nature teaches and molds us to be more complete and help us be the best we can possibly be. We hope to inspire participants to stay away from judging others as they severely limit ones inspiration and learnings. We guide them to focus on the validity of the message and not the messenger. This helps us embrace new experiences without deteriorating our noble virtues that we have worked hard at instilling into our behaviors. 3. We will share Guru Nanak’s philosophy and how it is the perfect formula in accelerating our growth to the path of being the

best we can possibly be. We provide examples where these values are universal and are embraced by many non-Sikhs too. We hope this will inspire them to embrace this values in their everyday lives. 4. On the fourth day we help participants connect to the Shabad Guru where we emphasize “My Guru, My Teacher”. We give them insight to how this treasure is a critical daily source of inspirational truth that constantly refines our thoughts to a level of clarity where our choices and decisions now are destined to have positive outcomes. We hope to get participants to appreciate that Nature/Hukum are evidence of real life experiences that reinforces the inspirations we embrace from the Shabad Guru. We now see what Nature/Hukum offers us something wonderful and start allowing us to see everything in a positive mindset. 5. Ultimately, our desire is to help each participant see that they have unique talents within them and the passion to see it shape their destiny. We like them to use the Shabad Guru’s daily truth to bring clarity to their thinking and enable them to look inwards discovering this unique talent within them and committing to realizing the potential to be the very best they can be. To complete the holistic learnings for the participants we plan in the afternoon session in providing unique experiences when participant choose to engage with noble thoughts and noble virtues. We want to encourage youths to appreciate that they will grow at an accelerated way if they improve their behaviors through embracing Gurmat thoughts and Gurmat virtues. Our hope is to help them shape their minds towards making their thoughts pure and their action pure thereby guaranteeing them in creating a very positive experience in lives of others and through this they will find themselves being passionate of Cont on Page 76

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LIFE FROM SAMELAN 2013 - PORT DICKSON

LIFE FROM SAMELAN Opening Ceremony of the 50th Annual Gurmat Parchar Samelan

Opening ceremony It was the most awaited moment of the samelan. It was a cool dark evening. The weather was welcoming, and so was the crowd. The samelan grounds were packed with a sea of people. Participants and visitors alike crowded the selami area, anxiously awaiting the arrival of our most awaited VVIP, our guruji, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. The mighties as usual set the tone by excitedly singing the “Mighty Khalsa” song, gearing up for Guru Maharaj’s arrival. The samelan committee has year after year, ensured that Guru Maharaj makes a grand and exciting entrance. This time around, being the 50th anniversary of Samelan, we knew that things would be spectacular. Was it going to be via the sky?

(Ala James Bond). Or escorted by police cars? Army trucks, maybe?? As soon as the Dasmesh band had started its glorious tune, we knew that Guru Maharaj was here. This was followed by a roaring sound. Guru Maharaj was lavishly escorted by a thunderous crew of 50 Sikh bikers decked in their finest biker outfits. This was followed by the punj pyare and a sea of Sikhs. The two saroops of Guru Maharaj was seated on palkis at the front of the selami area. And then, the fireworks started. 50 shots of fireworks to be exact, each representing the 50 years since the inception of the samelan. The fireworks showcase was elaborate, with a variety of designs that made the sanggat go

“oooh” and “ahh”. For a slight comic relief, there were passerby aeroplanes that seemed to be too close to the ongoing fireworks, worrying the sanggat (although they were obviously too high to be affected by the ongoing fireoworks). At the end of the showcase, 50 blue helium balloons were released to the sky, followed by the release of 50 pigeons were, which then flew themselves right over the darbar sahib. Needless to say the opening ceremony definitely started the samelan off with a bang! 50 was the golden number, a recurring theme throughout the opening ceremony and the samelan. It was fifty years ago when the first samelan ever was held in port Dickson. 50 years later, here we are again. Let the magic begin!


The Sikh, Dec 2013

LIFE FROM SAMELAN 2013 - PORT DICKSON

2013 - PORT DICKSON

The Mighty Khalsa Experience! In conjunction with the 50th Annual Gurmat Parchar Samelan, the Mighties Team resolved to make this year’s experience one the Mighties would not forget. Some of the interesting events were the Gurmat Workshop, The Amazing Race- Mighties Edition, and The Protect and Save Our Children session. The Gurmat Workshop entailed the Mighties moving in their groups to different stations to learn a little about Sikhi in a practical manner. Among the stations was the Darbar Sahib station. Here Penji Pardeep and Penji Pervinder explained the Darbar Sahib etiquette to the Mighties and also allowed the Mighties to do “Parkash” and “Sukhasan” on a pothi. The Mighties were also taught how to make Karah Parshad and the significance and importance of Langgar and the Nishan Sahib. The Amazing Race-Mighties Edition involved all the youngsters moving in teams from station to station solving puzzles and collecting points. This helped the Mighties bond and have some fun with their new friends. The organisers also invited an NGO called Protect and Save Our Children to talk to the Mighties

about their safety and protection in all situations. The session was interactive and the professional speakers managed to deliver the message to the children. The Mighties also visited the Royal Malaysian Army Museum. The Army officials gave the children a tour and organized a treasure hunt in the Museum for the children. The Army had also brought their tanks into the Samelan grounds for all participants to explore and take pictures with. Besides that, the children also made a photo frame from recyclable material for their group photo. This served as a perfect memento for the Mighties to take home from Samelan, along with their module books, Sikhi knowledge and their fortified love for Sikhi. While the Mighties had a lot of fun, they were also exposed to a multitude of Sikhi teachings. The Mighties attended an interactive and enlightening session every morning called “Gyan Ka Sagar”. Here, selected speakers would talk to and conduct activities with the Mighties about Sikhi and the Sikh lifestyle. Many of the participants voiced their opinions and questions

by Antarjami Kaur

as well as learn from the learned speakers. The Gyan Ka Sagar program this year concentrated on sewa, simran, the power of satsang, the problems Mighties face and how they can overcome their problems and walk on the Sikhi path. They were also exposed to Sikhi in today’s world and how to keep abreast of times while staying true to the Guru’s word. The Mighties did Japji Sahib and Rehrass together every day and also had two Inspirational Sessions a day. Here, they would sing along to Kirtan and listen to sakhis in the Darbar Sahib. The Kirtanis engaged the Mighties that they could be heard singing along to the kirtan even from the dorms! Last but not least, all the Mighty Khalsa participants made two very special friends- Super Singh and Super Kaur, the Super Sewaks! Every evening before Rehrass, Super Singh and Super Kaur, two masked Sikh youngsters would meet the Mighties. Our superheroes would talk about the importance of sewa and path, and how proud they are to be Sikhs. With all these interesting activities lined up for the Mighties, the Mighty Khalsa experience this year around was truly mighty!

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LIFE FROM SAMELAN 2013 - PORT DICKSON who they are and what they represent. They will now have clarity of intention and purpose instilling a strong sense of passion in their lives.

critical elements that need to be embedded into their behaviors to ensure we create the maximum positive experience for people we engage to serve.

1. The first two days of the afternoon session, we share with them how similar youths in other countries are inspired to do volunteering activities which “touch” others. We ask participants to reflect on this inspirations and get them to appreciate that the integrity of any volunteering activity requires a clarity and purity of intention. We bring local inspiring role models who pursue similar inspirations allowing participants to ask them personally and get more insight into their purpose in life and passion that drives them.

4. Participants will get to apply what they have learned and we hope with purity of thoughts and virtues the participants will get to experience new experiences that will “touch” them as they “touch” others.

The Sikh, Dec 2013

5. Towards the end of the Samelan, they will reflect on the whole experience in completing these volunteer events and share how honest they were on their pledges and what inspiring experiences they learned.

On Day 6 we expect to get each Jatha to share their learnings to all participants. We position Samelan 2. We offer participants insight into volunteer activities that Apprentices to come in on this day to share projects they plan to they will undertake and ask each Annual Samelan 1971undertake after the Samelan and of them toGurmat commitParchaar to a personal they will have the opportunity to “Pledge of Commitment”. The solicit participants support to intention is to ensure that participants reflect deeply on what engage in these projects. Our desire is to create many small and they plan to commit to and meaningful projects that youth can hopefully help them align their take on after the Samelan where integrity to serve with a clear they are inspired to embrace intention to bring a positive Gurmat virtues with purity of mind experience to others. and heart creating maximum impact to others and themselves. 3. Through the role models We hope we will ignite the flame of we like to get participants to also volunteerism in the hearts of all appreciate that noble virtues like ultimately realizing Sabha’s vision Love, Compassion, Forgiveness, of “Love All, Serve All. Humility and Contentment are

Nikki Khalse: Sikhi Fun For Young Ones! If you are a parent with a young child in Samelan, fret not because we’ve got you and your offspring covered at Nikke Khalse. What you see today in Nikke Khalse is a flourished version of what Nursery used to be then. Thanks to the work put in by our past and current Nikke Khalse (Nursery) sewadars, we are able to provide a place for our precious ‘chotey bechay’ to gather and equip themselves with some knowledge which would make their transition into Mighties, easy and pleasurable. This year in conjunction with the grandest opening ceremony to celebrate the 50th year of Samelan, Nikke Khalse programme included special Masterchef activities, yoga sessions, art and craft programmes and a special outing to the Port Dickson beach. Although, Nikke Khalse programme has been running for the past 15 years, we think it is befitting to mention some of the pioneer sewadars who made this possible. A special thank you goes to Hardeep Kaur, Harminder Kaur-fondly known as Min and Paramjit Kaur (Pam). What you started is still running and is appreciated by many parents


The Sikh, Dec 2013

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KLANG - 2003


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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN

ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN KLANG - 2003 Samelan 2003 was held in Sekolah Menengah Teknik Klang, Klang, Selangor from 14th to 20th December, 2003. About 1200 Naujawans and Sewadars Participated in this Samelan. The theme of the Samelan was “Guru mere sangg sadaa hai naaley� For the first time in a Samelan, Sri Guru Granth Sahib ji was brought to the Samelan Grounds in a helicopter. At this Samelan, we placed a greater emphasis on sewa. We taught and coached the participants so that they are able to do the sewa correctly and do the same in their local communities. The Samelan provides an excellant training ground where participants can have hands-on training and hopefully apply it correctly in the future.

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The Sikh, Dec 2013


The Sikh, Dec 2013

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN JOHOR BAHRU - 2004 Samelan 2004 was held in Sekolah Menengah Perdagangan Teknik, Johor Bahru from 18th to 25th December, 2004. About 1000 Naujawans and Sewadars participated in this Samelan. For the first time Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji was ceremoniously escorted in a float resembling Sri Harmandar Sahib (Golden Temple). The theme of the Samelan was “Jis kay sir oopar toon su-aamee so dukh kaisaa paavai” . This year we implemented the Jatha Coordinators. Their primary role was to become the contact point between the organisers and participants. This year, we also had the “Mr Singh” competition where all the naujawans in the samelan got a chance to participate and display their talents in areas such as public speaking, khalsa dress parade, cultural dance, etc and the winner was declared with majority vote by the participants. Chardi Kala Jatha (USA) made their first appearance in our samelan. They were very inspiring for the youths as well as the sewadars with their traditional kirtan and fluent Punjabi. They also conducted classrooms sessions to share their experiences. Our home grown rally world champion Sardar Karamjit Singh made a surprise visit to the Samelan. He demonstrated his excellent driving skills.

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ANNUAL GURMAT PARCHAAR SAMELAN PORT DICKSON - 2006 Samelan 2006 was held in Sekolah Menengah Teknik, Port Dickson from 17th to 24th December, 2006. About 1400 Naujawans and Sewadars participated in this Samelan. “Youth Leaders” was a new group created for senior participants. They were identified to become the next batch of sewadars for future samelans. We had participants from Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand. The program focused on areas such as self development, leadership skills, sikhi values, group dynamics and others. Many of “Youth Leaders” are now running mini samelans and SNSM core activities nationwide.


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The Sikh Magazine (Dec 2013) Vol 49